Kirwan Commission Wants $4 Billion Spending Hike

Commission Member Insists Record Spending Hike is “A Very Small Amount”

Dec 7, 2018

ROCKVILLE, MD (December 7, 2018) — The Maryland Public Policy Institute today issued the following statement after Maryland’s Kirwan Commission called for a record $4.4 billion in new taxpayer spending on public education and a commission member called the record spending increase, “a very small amount of money.” The Daily Record reports that Kirwan Commission member Kalman Hettleman said at the commission’s Thursday meeting, “That is a very small amount of money for the near-term years to get about the work that needs to be done.”


“Four billion in new spending can only be called ‘a very small amount’ by those who make a career out of spending other peoples’ money,” said Christopher B. Summers, president and chief executive officer of the Institute. “Maryland taxpayers should be concerned by the commission’s recommendations. Our in-depth analysis of the commission’s work finds scant evidence that their recommendations will benefit Maryland children and families, while ample evidence shows that historic school spending increase since 2002 has produced disappointing results.”


The Institute in June released a comprehensive analysis of the commission’s interim recommendations and found they would dramatically increase government spending and bureaucracy while delivering questionable results for Maryland students and families. The report found that Maryland already invests big in education relative to the nation and that new school spending in the state often encourages administrative bloat rather than classroom performance. Read the full report at


As part of its “Better Schools for Maryland” Initiative, the Institute also released a statewide survey gauging public sentiment on public education. The survey showed that Marylanders support increasing teacher pay as the commission recommends, but believe it should be paid for through the existing budget and not new spending. Read the survey at


About the Maryland Public Policy Institute: Founded in 2001, the Maryland Public Policy Institute is a nonpartisan public policy research and education organization that focuses on state policy issues. The Institute’s mission is to formulate and promote public policies at all levels of government based on principles of free enterprise, limited government, and civil society.  Learn more at