The General Assembly gave final approval Tuesday to a $43.5 billion state budget that closes a $400 million revenue gap while holding the line on taxes and sending new funding to Baltimore and 10 other school systems.
The lawmakers’ action came with time to spare — two weeks remain before the legislature will adjourn its annual 90-day session. The legislature’s only constitutionally mandated annual duty is to pass a balanced budget.
The final spending plan crafted by a House-Senate conference committee neither increases not decreases taxes while limiting tuition increases at public colleges and universities to 2 percent. A private school voucher program that came under challenge in the House emerged mostly intact. Growth in general fund spending, over which the state has most control, will increase by 0.5 percent.