O'Malley says he'll spend more money building schools
Gov. Martin O’Malley pledged to spend an additional $1 billion in state money for school construction if re-elected, repeating a campaign promise he made and kept four years ago.
“Change doesn’t happen overnight, but we see change happening here,” said O’Malley gesturing toward a construction pit where work was underway for new buildings at Annapolis' Germantown Elementary School.
He appeared at the same school four years ago to promise a $250 million annual investment building schools if elected. Over the past four years O’Malley exceeded that amount, spending $1.3 billion on construction.
The plan would honor recommendations made by a task force Treasurer Nancy Kopp convened in 2004 that said $250 million a year should be dedicated to new buildings.
When in office Ehrlich chopped money from schools to close a budget deficit but the legislature restored funding.
The governor’s plan also seeks alternative financing to help local governments put more capital resources toward schools. He proposes finance new windows, heating and cooling systems through energy service contracts, an arrangement where the more efficient equipment is funded by the savings realized by lower energy bills.