Anne Arundel County Executive Steve Schuh has unveiled his budget plan for fiscal 2017. “Last year, we set out an agenda to help our county reach its full potential. We began working to change the policies and culture of Anne Arundel County,” said Schuh, “and we are succeeding.”
The budget delivers on the county executive’s five-point strategic plan for a stronger Anne Arundel County including the following.
- Reducing Taxes and Fees: The fiscal 2017 budget fully funds both an $11 million tax cut and $75 million reduction in water and sewer connection fees. Through the property tax cap, citizens will also see a 1%, $5.5 million reduction in property taxes.
- Strengthening Education: It fully funds a $15.5 million teacher salary step increase and the largest school construction effort in county history.
- Investing in Public Safety: It includes funding for 20 new public safety personnel and continues to fund the planning of a new police academy and central booking facility.
- Reforming County Government: The plan reorganizes various operating units related to inspections, permits, planning and zoning to ensure greater efficiency and a smoother work flow.
- Cleaning Up our Waterways: In the largest investment in waterway cleanup in county history, the plan calls for $253 million in a six-year program to support more than 300 waterway cleanup projects throughout the county. The fiscal 2017 budget also works to improve residents’ overall quality of life by making strategic investments in every corner of the county through the JumpStart Anne Arundel Capital Funding program. Key projects in the budget include the following.
- Crofton High School: The plan includes $6.2 million in design funds for the first incrementally new high school in our county since 1982.
- Brooklyn Park Senior Center Capital Improvement: It will include $824,000 for an expansion of the County’s Brooklyn Park Senior Center.
- George Cromwell Elementary Revitalization: It will include funds to help with the design of George Cromwell Elementary School’s revitalization.
- Mountain Road Revitalization: It proposed $23 million during the next six years for the long-awaited, and much-needed revitalization of Mountain Road in Pasadena to ensure this vital artery of the county can fulfill its economic potential.
- Severn Health and Wellness Center: It allocates more than $2 million for the much-needed Severn Health and Wellness Center to ensure basic medical services for the Severn community.
The executive’s budget plan will face final consideration by the county council on June 15.