On Monday, the Rockville City Council is expected to hear a preview of the 2014 legislative session and to discuss the city’s state legislative priorities with the District 17 delegation, which represents Rockville in the Maryland General Assembly. The new session begins Wednesday in Annapolis.
In November, the city council approved a list of priorities for the 2014 General Assembly. They are:
- The restoration of highway user revenues. Towns and cities use the state aid for certain transportation-related projects. But according to a report from city staff, this resource hasn’t been fully funded since 2008, when Rockville received $3.3 million of the $45 million budgeted. Rockville’s 2014 payment was $1.62 million—which included a one-time $1.2 million payment. The estimated 2015 payment is $513,558.
- Increasing the amount of funding Montgomery County receives from the state for school construction. Overcrowding and aging facilities are issues at in Montgomery County’s public schools, but there hasn’t been enough money to match the need for construction, city staff said in a report. State records show that Montgomery County Public Schools asked for the state for $149 million for fiscal 2014, but it received $35 million.
- Protection of the city’s storm water management fee and program from legislation to expand an exemption for governments from paying storm water fees on public property. The city has adopted a policy that all governments pay their fair share of storm water management costs.
- Protecting Rockville’s speed camera program
The city wants to be sure Rockville’s existing speed camera program would not be harmed by any future legislation.
- Protecting the city’s interest in the event communication
tax reform legislation is proposed in the 2014 session
Though no formal recommendation was made, a state task force report released in 2013 proposed options that the city is concerned would lead to revenue losses.
The city council also could decide to pursue a $250,000 state bond bill to help fund a $1.5 million project to renovate the Rockville Swim and Fitness Center’s indoor locker rooms. There's the possibility the city could pursue another $250,000 bond bill to improve access and parking for people with disabilities at F. Scott Fitzgerald Theatre, a project for which the city has budgeted $845,000, city records show.
If you go: The Rockville City Council meets 7 p.m. Monday at Rockville City Hall. The meeting will be broadcast live on Rockville 11 and at the city’s website. The full agenda is also available online.