Baltimore County Executive Roger B. Hayden wants to change the county's capital spending habits, after several years of restraint.
During an address delivered Thursday to the county Planning Board, Mr. Hayden recommended spending $120 million for fiscal years 1996 and 1997. The proposal will go on this year's referendum ballot in the November general election.
Although the $120 million is roughly the average appropriated in past years, the key difference in this latest proposal is that Mr. Hayden said the county will spend what is appropriated for 1996 and 1997.
In 1992, voters approved appropriations of $117.8 million for the fiscal 1994-1995 capital budget cycle. However, because of cash flow restraints and other fiscal concerns, the county only spent $106.4 million of that. The county went to a biannual capital budget process last year.
Mr. Hayden told board members that when they are deciding how to spend the $120 million, he hopes they will focus on projects that help expand existing industries and attract new businesses, that protect older communities and their associated business districts and conserve the county's rural areas.
"We are not going to be able to extend the urban boundary for development purposes beyond the present limits ," said Mr. Hayden. "It is too expensive. It's environmentally unsound and socially and economically damaging."