April 18, 2011

Montgomery Council Committees to Discuss FY12 Operating Budget Requests for Police, School Resource Officers, Recreation. Also on Friday, April 15: Ur

Release ID: 11-091
Release Date: 4/14/2011
Contact: Neil Greenberger 240-777-7939 or Delphine Harriston240-777-7931
From: Council Office

ROCKVILLE, Md., April 14, 2011—The Montgomery County Council’s Public Safety Committee and its Education Committee 1:30 p.m. on Friday, April 15, will meet jointly to review the operating budget request for Fiscal Year 2012 concerning School Resource Officers. County Executive Isiah Leggett’s recommended budget would abolish the program that places police officers in schools and would redeploy nine officers currently in those positions to other duties.

The Public Safety Committee, which is chaired by Phil Andrews and includes Councilmembers Roger Berliner and Marc Elrich, and the Education Committee, which is chaired by Councilmember Valerie Ervin and includes Councilmembers Andrews and Craig Rice, will meet in the Seventh Floor Hearing Room of the Council Office Building at 100 Maryland Ave. in Rockville. The meeting will be televised live by County Cable Montgomery (CCM—Cable Channel 6 on Comcast and RCN, Channel 30 on Verizon) and also will be available via streaming through the County Web site at www.montgomerycountymd.gov.

The County Executive’s recommendation to abolish the School Resource Officers program would reduce expenditures in FY12 by $1,050,080. The program that places officers in schools, originally called the Educational Facilities Officers (EFO) program, was established for the 2003-04 school year with a $4 million grant that was used to hire 32 new police officers in high schools and middle schools. The program has been gradually reduced as the County has faced increasing budget pressures in recent years.

After its review of the proposed budget, the joint committees will make recommendations that will be considered by the full Council. The Council will adopt the FY12 County budget in late May. It will go into effect on July 1.

At 2:30 p.m., the Public Safety Committee will hold a worksession on the operating budget request of the Police Department. That meeting also will be televised live by County Cable Montgomery.

At 9:30 a.m. in the Third Floor Conference Room, the Government Operations and Fiscal Policy (GO) Committee, which is chaired by Councilmember Nancy Navarro and includes Councilmembers Ervin and Hans Riemer, will discuss the budget requests of the Office of the Inspector General, the Department of General Services and the Office of Intergovernmental Relations.

At 9:30 a.m. in the Seventh Floor Hearing Room, the Planning, Housing and Economic Development (PHED) Committee, which is chaired by Nancy Floreen and includes Councilmembers Elrich and George Leventhal, will review the operating budget request of the Department of Recreation. County Executive Leggett has recommended that the recreation budget be decreased by 5.5 percent from the FY11 original approved budget. If the recommendation is approved, it would mean that the Department of Recreation’s overall expenditures will have declined by 21.8 percent since FY08 and the number of career staff in that period would have been reduced by 42.3 percent.

The County Executive’s recommendations would eliminate youth flag football and T ball sports programs, but would retain funding for youth basketball programs. Teen special events would be eliminated. The PHED Committee also will hold a worksession on the operating budget request for the County’s Urban Districts that were created to promote activities that benefit residential and commercial interests in the Bethesda, Silver Spring and Wheaton areas.

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