Bond money for public needs Sun endorsement: Balto. Co. voters should approve $195 million in bonds to improve infrastructure.

October 31, 1998

WHEN Baltimore County residents go to the polls Tuesday, they will be asked to authorize $195 million in bond financing. That's quite a bit of money. But improving the county's infrastructure is so important that the package deserves citizen support.

Question E, the biggest item, is a telling example. Although it would authorize the county to borrow $85 million for school maintenance and renovation, most of the money would go for roofs and other long-delayed repairs at older elementary schools. Only $1 million would be earmarked for a new project -- to plan a high school in the rapidly growing Owings Mills area.

Question D, which amounts to $72 million, is another example. More than $41 million would be used for road projects and $14.4 million for resurfacing. The rest would go toward storm drain improvements, bridge repairs and alley construction.

We urge a vote FOR all the bond issues, which appear on the ballot as Questions D through K. These community projects are badly needed. Although the grand total of borrowing appears high, it in no way endangers the county's excellent bond rating.

The ballot also includes three charter amendments.

Question A would clarify the County Council's approval process on certain contracts. Question B would exempt only the county executive's staff from the civil service system. Question C would simplify decision-making when the county accepts grants and gifts. All three questions merit a vote FOR.

Pub Date: 10/31/98

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