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FY25 budget, supplements approved by legislators

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Delaware legislators passed the FY25 budget and one-time supplement bills which now await the governor’s signature. | DBT PHOTO BY JACOB OWENS

DOVER — Delaware’s budget and one-time supplement bills for the upcoming fiscal year are now waiting for Governor John Carney’s signature after they were approved late Thursday night.

The $6.13 billion general budget approved by the current General Assembly is more than $50 million greater than the budget previously proposed by Carney and includes increases to salaries for educators, EZPass operations, executive office salaries, student housing and transportation and more.

The one-time supplement bill also saw an increase from the governor’s proposed bill from $91.7 million to $168.3 million, citing major jumps in funding for technology needs, trauma-informed services and school-based behavioral health technology. Delaware’s other post-retirement benefits increase supplement came in as one of the largest increases for the year at $51 million.

The budget also includes setting aside $50 million in the budget stabilization fund to cover future raises for educators as part of an ongoing plan to raise base teacher salaries to start at $60,000.

Capital budgetary items, otherwise known as the bond bill, and grant-in-aid funding have not yet worked their ways through the legislature as of press time.

Carney lauded the efforts of legislators, noting that the budget continues investments in Delaware’s public schools, workforce, and environment, “while doing so responsibly and sustainably.”

“We are continuing to raise salaries for teachers, provide more resources for students who need our help the most, and address rising health care costs, while setting aside reserves to protect Delaware taxpayers well into the future,” Carney said in a prepared statement.

The approved budget also increases federal funding possibilities by adding money to long-term care and Medicaid payments and offers more to Delaware’s Purchase of Care and Early Childhood Assistance Programs. It clocks in at over 9% more than the budget for the current year.

“This budget not only addresses immediate needs, but also invests in the future of our state, providing critical funding for education, healthcare, and social services,” said Rep. Kim Williams, who is the co-chair of the Joint Finance Committee. “For the third year in a row, we were able to deliver well-deserved raises for our state workers and educators, bolstering our workforce, ensuring we remain competitive with neighboring states, and enabling us to attract and retain top talent.”

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