ENTERTAINMENT

Montgomery Schools-Spending, $100 million increase

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ROCKVILLE, Md. (AP) - Montgomery County officials say new state mandates will drive up spending on the county's school system by $100 million over the next four years.

The spending is driven in part by a shift of some teacher pension costs to counties that was approved last year. Spending will also be driven up by a law that requires local school systems to ensure that per-pupil funding doesn't drop from year to year.

The Washington Post reports that Montgomery council member Valerie Ervin likened the spending increases to "a runaway train."

Stephen Farber, who presented an analysis of County Executive Isiah Leggett's budget proposal to the council, says the county needs to persuade the state to amend the per-pupil funding law to make it less "punitive" and "overreaching."

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