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Anne Arundel Schools May Get $36M Less Than Planned in O'Malley's Budget

State funding would cover 13 school projects, but not Severna Park High School's replacement.

The school system has already held multiple public hearings on the spending plan, and the Board of Education is slated to vote on it Feb. 19. (Photo by D. Frank Smith)
The school system has already held multiple public hearings on the spending plan, and the Board of Education is slated to vote on it Feb. 19. (Photo by D. Frank Smith)
Local schools may get much less than they planned for in Gov. Martin O'Malley's latest capital budget.

O'Malley's administration announced plans Wednesday to dole out $20.2 million to Anne Arundel County Public Schools in the next state budget. The amount is $36.2 million less than the school system requested for this year, and about $12 million less than it received in recent years. 

The $20.2 million covers construction projects at 13 Anne Arundel County schools, but leaves out Severna Park High's $22.5 million replacement costs. Work at the high school was slated to begin this year, school officials have said.

Local school projects funded by the state next year include:
  • Annapolis High School (Athletic Facilities)—$700,000
  • Benfield Elementary School—$500,000
  • Jacobsville Elementary School—$880,000
  • Jones Elementary School—$464,000
  • Magothy River Middle School—$1.75 million
  • Mills Parole Elementary School—$115,000
  • Meade Heights Elementary School—$895,000
  • Meade High School—$7.53 million
  • Nantucket Elementary School—$892,000
  • North Glen Elementary School—$2.25 million
  • Park Elementary School—$77,000
  • Rolling Knolls Elementary School—$3.42 million
  • South River High School (Athletic Facilities)—$700,000
Acting Anne Arundel County Superintendent Mamie J. Perkins laid out her 2014-2015 budget proposal in December, weighing in at $1.04 billion. The school system has already held multiple public hearings on the spending plan, and the Board of Education is slated to vote on it Feb. 19, before passing it to the county government for review. 

Schools spokesman Bob Mosier said they will have the opportunity to request additional funding at hearings with the Maryland Board of Public Works later this month. The school system had requested $25.2 million from the state for SPHS this year, Mosier said. 

Barring that, the school system can turn to the Anne Arundel County Council, its other funding source. Mosier said there's an opportunity that the council could pay more this year for the project and less in the next budget. 

And if that plan doesn't pan out, the school system may have to slow the replacement project down. However, Mosier said it's still premature to be considering that option.

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