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U.S. Department of Education: Promoting Educational Excellence for all Americans

Adjustments to local fiscal efforts in certain fiscal years (Sec. 300.205)

Comment: A few commenters stated that the link between early intervening services and reductions in maintenance of effort in Sec. 300.205(d) is not in the Act. Some commenters expressed concern that this requirement forces an LEA to choose between providing early intervening services and directing local funds toward nondisabled children. One commenter stated that linking the use of funds for early intervening services to reduction in maintenance of effort in Sec. 300.205 is not logical and was not the intent of Congress.

Discussion: The link between reductions in local maintenance of effort (reflected in Sec. 300.205(d)) and the amount of Part B funds that LEAs may use to provide early intervening services (reflected in Sec. 300.226) is established in the Act. Section 300.205(d) tracks the statutory language in section 613(a)(2)(C)(iv) of the Act and Sec. 300.226(a) tracks the statutory language in section 613(f)(1) of the Act. Section 300.205(d) states that the amount of funds expended by an LEA for early intervening services under Sec. 300.226 counts toward the maximum amount of expenditures that an LEA may reduce in its local maintenance of effort. Section 300.226(a) clearly states that the amount of Part B funds an LEA may use to provide early intervening services may not exceed 15 percent of the funds the LEA receives under Part B of the Act less any amount reduced by the LEA under Sec. 300.205.

As noted in the NPRM, the Department believes it is important to caution LEAs that seek to reduce their local maintenance of effort in accordance with Sec. 300.205(d) and use some of their Part B funds for early intervening services under Sec. 300.226 because the local maintenance of effort reduction provision and the authority to use Part B funds for early intervening services are interconnected. The decision that an LEA makes about the amount of funds that it uses for one purpose affects the amount that it may use for the other. Appendix D to Part 300--Maintenance of Effort and Early Intervening Services includes examples that illustrate how Sec. Sec. 300.205(d) and 300.226(a) affect one another.

Changes: We have added a reference to Appendix D in Sec. 300.226(a).