Sewers top capital budget Projects must wait for matching grants

April 04, 1993|By Sherrie Ruhl | Sherrie Ruhl,Staff Writer

The proposed $96.3 million Harford capital budget for fiscal 1994 includes money for a new elementary school in Bel Air, renovations or additions to five other schools, new firehouses for Abingdon and Havre de Grace and a nature center at Leight Park.

The capital budget, presented to the County Council on Thursday by County Executive Eileen M. Rehrmann, would increase construction spending by about $30 million, from this year's $66.3 million.

But nearly $60 million of the proposed construction budget would be set aside for two sewer projects: the Sod Run and the Whiteford Area treatment plants. The money won't be spent unless the county gets state and federal grants, said County Treasurer Jim Jewell.

The spending plan includes $2.5 million to renovate three older elementaries -- Darlington, Youth's Benefit in Fallston and Roye-Williams in Aberdeen.

School projects account for $9.3 million, less than half of the $19.5 million the school system had requested. Other schools that sought money for modernization, including Havre de Grace Elementary, Norrisville Elementary and Hickory Elementary in Bel Air, will have to wait.

The budget includes $2.6 million to build Country Walk %o Elementary, a 600-student school in Bel Air to open in 1994, $801,000 for a second gym at C. Milton Wright High and about $700,000 to complete the county's share of a 300-student addition at Bel Air Middle School.

The state has agreed to contribute about $3.1 million to Country Walk and is expected to contribute $2 million for the Bel Air Middle project.

In addition, the budget includes about $1 million to buy land for Abingdon Middle, to open in 1997, and Abingdon High, which has no target opening date.

Under the executive's spending blueprint, the county also would spend $2.3 million to build firehouses in Abingdon and Havre de Grace, expand the firehouse in Fallston and renovate the Fawn Grove station.

Parks and recreation, which has been cut severely in years past, would get $2.5 million for projects, including a nature center at Leight Park on Otter Point.

Harford's share for the expansion of the Sod Run sewage treatment plant would be $43.5 million, but the county won't begin the project unless it gets a $9 million grant from the state.

Laying sewer lines for the Whiteford area treatment plant, on the border between Harford County and Delta, Pa., would cost about $4.4 million. The county won't build it unless it gets a $3 million federal grant.

Also in the capital budget is $8.9 million for highways (including $2.2 million for road resurfacing) and $7 million for solid waste ($5.6 million to cap the Tollgate Landfill and $1.4 million for an engineering study on how to close the old Abingdon Landfill).

The budget must be approved by the seven-member County Council before May 31.

BUDGET HIGHLIGHTS

* $2.5 million to renovate three older elementaries -- Darlington, Youth's Benefit in Fallston and Roye-Williams in Aberdeen.

* $801,000 for a second gym at C. Milton Wright High and $700,000 for a 300-student addition at Bel Air Middle.

* $2.6 million for Country Walk Elementary, a 600-student school in Bel Air to open in 1994.

* $2.5 million for parks and recreation, including construction of a nature center at Leight Park on Otter Point.

$2.3 million to build new firehouses in Abingdon and Havre de Grace, expand the firehouse in Fallston and renovate the Fawn Grove station.

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