Do you support the findings of the Commission on Innovation and Excellence in Education? Are you committed to funding associated reforms, and if so, how?
Milano: Yes, I am fully committed to supporting and adequately funding the Kirwan Commission recommendations, among which are universal pre-K, incentivizing a teacher leadership development, prioritizing career and technology education, and more. In order to adequately fund the final recommendations, we need to fight for existing dollars, identify partnerships that can produce funding and resources, and generate new revenue by expanding our tax base. First, casino revenues (roughly $500M) which will now be re-directed to education can help to fund these recommended initiatives. Second, I will also propose legislation for a grant/foundation-seeking Authority to assist with certain recommendations that private and corporate funders would consider. We are a small, nimble state that can partner on pilot projects to enhance the quality of our education. Companies like Tesla, foundations like Pew, or nonprofit advocacy groups can partner with our school systems to provide new opportunities for students. Third, on a larger scale and with a longer-term timeframe, I have a tiered economic plan for expanding the tax base, which includes smart growth for neighborhoods, creating the conditions for small businesses to thrive, recruiting businesses from certain high-paying sectors (i.e., tech, finance, etc..) and investing in renewable energy. If we prioritize renewable energy in Maryland, we can aim to generate more of Maryland’s energy within our state, and sell to surrounding states. This will produce a strong, diversified revenue stream for our state, with an enormous potential for growth.