Governor Larry Hogan has decided not to spend $80 million that Maryland’s legislature had fenced off for specific budget areas.
According to the Baltimore Sun, the Administration stated that it will try to shift its budget to cover the costs of some of the programs caught in the fenced off funding, including $9.2 million needed to build a Public Safety Communication System to improve police and fire department communications in emergencies.
MACo’s letter to the Governor regarding the fenced off funds asked specifically for consideration of that public safety program. For more information, see MACo Asks Governor To Fully Fund Lingering Budget Items.
The Baltimore Sun reports the plan described by Budget Secretary David R. Brinkley,
The budget secretary said that of a total of $173 million left to the governor’s discretion, the administration would release about $75 million. However, the money that will be spent includes none of the $80 million lawmakers “fenced off” and told the governor he could spend either all of it or none of it.
The administration said it will try to shift about $37 million around in its budget to cover the costs of some of the programs the legislature included in that package. That includes such things as the $9.2 million needed to build a Public Safety Communication System to improve police and fire department communications in emergencies.
Among the money that will not be released is $19 million the legislature directed toward helping most of the state’s local school systems with the cost of employee pensions. Another $1 million that lawmakers allocated for Baltimore’s Safe Streets program to reduce violence also did not make the cut.
Read the full article for more information.