The new operating and capital budgets that the Council signed off on this week have some major wins for District 5 and the rest of the county:
- While holding the line on taxes and starting to reduce our borrowing, we’re fully funding the school board’s operating budget request.
- We’re adding $237 million for additions and renovations at 10 schools in District 5, including $123 million for Northwood High.
- We’re maintaining staffing at Hillandale Fire Station 24 and the Burtonsville station.
- We’re adding a detective to the vice unit to combat human trafficking.
- We’re devoting more resources — $27 million — to curb gang violence, with stronger efforts from the courts, police and community intervention programs.
- We’ve slotted $5.7 million for a long-overdue overhaul of Hillandale Local Park.
- At the Forest Glen Metro station, we’ve allotted $15 million for a second entrance and pedestrian tunnel under Georgia Avenue.
- There’s money for new Bus Rapid Transit projects on U.S. 29 and New Hampshire Avenue.
- And we’re moving ahead with studies for a new student loan finance program, which can make Montgomery County a national leader in helping borrowers refinance their crushing debt loads.
My thanks to my Council colleagues and our staff for their hard work in hammering out a budget that both meets our county’s needs and is fiscally responsible.
See my remarks here: