Ahead of General Assembly start, millions requested through Anne Arundel bond bills
Date: Capital Gazette, January 8, 2019, Lauren Lumpkin
When women seek drug and alcohol treatment, they don’t always have a place to take their children.
“We’re one of maybe four, that I’m aware of, where women in treatment can have their children with them,” said Chris McCabe, executive director of Chrysalis House in Crownsville. “Women come here from all over the state.”
On any given day, Chrysalis House sees 70 women and children in its inpatient and transitional programs, McCabe said. And as the region’s opioid crisis rages on, the facility is nearly busting at the seams.
Chrysalis House is one of a dozen organizations working with local legislators as the 2019 General Assembly session opens Wednesday to secure funding for capital projects like building expansions, swimming pool resurfacing and parking garage repairs.
Anne Arundel County delegates and senators are carrying at least $2 million in local bond bill requests to the Maryland General Assembly. The bills — which have to approved by the delegation and ultimately the General Assembly — provide funding for local groups and charities. The requests are separate from Gov. Larry Hogan’s capital budget.
Sen. Ed Reilly, R-Crofton, and Del. Sid Saab, R-Crownsville, sponsored Chrysalis House’s $250,000 bond bill request, which McCabe said is needed to expand the organization’s child development center.
“We really need to have our facilities expanded to improve our quality of care for the women and children that we serve,” McCabe said.
The city of Annapolis, Cape St. Claire Improvement Association, Glen Burnie Park Swim Club, YWCA, and the Anne Arundel County Food Bank have called on county lawmakers to funnel money to capital projects.
The Chesapeake Lighthouse Foundation is also trying to get on lawmakers’ radars. The organization runs Chesapeake Science Point, one of the county’s four charter schools.
“I would love to see funding facilities support for charter schools,” said Mark Sutherland, Chesapeake Lighthouse Foundation’s community partnerships director.
Chesapeake Science Point was one of a handful of schools that received a five-star rating from the Maryland State Department of Education. The public charter school relies on per-pupil funding from the county school district to survive, Sutherland said.
“There’s no corporate or private sponsors,” Sutherland said. “And we need more help outside of that per-pupil (funding).”
Sutherland said he hasn’t nailed down a dollar figure for the potential expansion that would serve kindergarten through fifth-graders. He still needs to get approval from the Board of Education to move forward.
The current building, for students in sixth through twelve grades, cost $16 to $17 million to construct back in 2005, he said.
Bond bills are just a portion of what lawmakers will discuss this session. Last year, Del. Nic Kipke, R-Pasadena, estimated money for bond bills comprises “a fraction of 1 percent” of the total capital budget, The Capital reported.
Below are the organizations and dollar amounts listed in the county’s bond bills, along with the primary sponsors of each bill, if applicable, according to notes provided by the Anne Arundel County House Delegation.
- Cape St. Clair Improvement Association beach improvements — $100,000, Sen. Ed Reilly
- Chrysalis House Inc. Child Development Center expansion — $250,000, Reilly and Del. Sid Saab
- Chesapeake Arts Center HVAC repairs — $150,000 to $300,000, Del. Ned Carey, D-Brooklyn Park
- Historic Annapolis museum repairs — $125,000
- Constructing a Garden for Heroes therapeutic garden for wounded veterans — $250,000, Reilly
- Wellness House of Annapolis — Sen. Sarah Elfreth-D, Annapolis
- City of Annapolis — portion of $4.5 million flood mitigation on the Dock Street side of City Dock; portion of $15 million Hillman Garage replacement; portion of $500,000 public works maintenance facility project, Del. Mike Busch, D-Annapolis and Elfreth
- Glen Burnie Park Swim Club pool resurfacing
- Linthicum Ferndale Athletic Association field lights at Andover Park— $250,000, Del. Mark Chang, D-Glen Burnie
- YWCA Safe House and Education & Wellness Center construction — $750,000
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