Recently, county officials appeared in Annapolis at the January 25 Board of Public Works (BPW) meeting to appeal for funding for school construction projects. The BPW is composed of Governor Martin O’Malley, Treasurer Nancy Kopp, and Comptroller Peter Franchot. The Washington Post reported that,
With the budget process accelerating, participants flocked to the state capital to compete for limited funds above an initial allocation of $250 million that will be divvied up among the state’s 23 counties and Baltimore.
Jocularly known around Annapolis as the “Beg-a-Thon” but rechristened the “Hope-a-Thon” by Gov. Martin O’Malley (D), the appeals to the three members who sit on the Board of Public Works take on more importance this year as O’Malley’s budget proposes a near-record $372 million for school construction.
This increased funding for school construction was previously reported on Conduit Street. MACo’s Legislative Committee adopted its annual initiatives for 2012, including School Construction and Renovation Funding on this list of top priority items for the 2012 legislative session. From the initiative summary:
School Construction and Renovation Funding
While the State has laudably increased its school construction and renovation efforts in recent years, the need for funding remains high. Every state dollar invested in school projects leverages roughly two county dollars of local funding. MACo urges the General Assembly to continue its commitment by keeping school construction and renovation funding a high priority, and support a funding level consistent with its own adopted multi-year goals. Additionally, MACo urges the State to develop and adopt a new multi-year funding strategy as the current goal expires in FY 2013.