Departments Seek $94 Million For Schools, Other Projects

February 05, 1992|By James M. Coram | James M. Coram,Staff writer

County department heads want $94 million for capital projects in fiscal 1993, including $41 million for new schools and other education expenses.

The requests, which were sent to the Planning Board Monday, are 8 percent less than department heads received a year ago and 22 percent less than they asked for last year.

About $66 million of the revenue would come from bond sales. The rest would come from several sources. About $14 million would come from state school construction funds, $4.9 million from pay-as-you-go revenues, $4.6 million from transfer taxes, and the rest from other sources.

County Executive Charles I. Ecker is expected to pare the requests considerably once he receives recommendations from the Planning Board and his bond-affordability committee. Both will give him advice later this month.

Among the education projects were $22.5 million for a new western high school, $7 million for a new northern elementary school and $1.8 million for plans and engineering for a secondnew high school. The $14.2 million in state school construction money may be in jeopardy because of the state's financial crisis.

Among the requests in this year's budget are:

* $6 million to acquire land and buildings to house 95,000 square feet of office space the county now rents.

* $6.1 million to build a community college building that would house classrooms, conference rooms, administrative offices, faculty offices, a child-care center and micro-computer labs.

* $1.9 million for a Dorsey Hall fire station at Old Annapolis Road and U.S. 29.

* $3 million to pay for state road projects that would otherwise languish because of the state's fiscal problems. The county would go ahead with the projects now and hope for reimbursement from the state later.

* $790,000 to equip the east Columbia branch library, which is scheduled to open in September, and $700,000 to modify and add new equipment to the Central Library.

Also included in the requests is a $575,000 water and sewer project on Guilford Road across from the Harriet Tubman Center. If the project is approved by Ecker and the County Council, Howard County will get its first synagogue two years earlier than anticipated. The project had been planned for the fiscal 1995 budget.

The planned water and sewer hookup for Beth Shalom synagogue is the second phase of a $630,000 water and sewer project near the Harriet Tubman Center. Taken together, the projects could provide service to 22 Guilford Road properties.

Also, $5.1 million in state Program Open Space money was cut from the proposal. The money had been earmarked mostly to purchase land for two publicly owned golf courses. The county now expects developers to donate the courses to the county.

The Planning Board will hold a public hearing on the requests Feb. 13 and report to Ecker by March 1. Ecker must submit his proposals to the County Council by April 1.

Ecker's bond-affordability committee has yet to give him its recommendations.Last year, the committee advised Ecker to slash $20 million from departmental requests and limit general-obligation bonds sales to $55 million. General-obligation bond requests this year are $61.3 million.

Ecker's spending-affordability committee, which deals with the operating budget, is expected to report to him Monday.

Baltimore Sun Articles
|
|
|
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.