Unanimous Council Support for “The People’s Budget”
The Prince George’s County Council, convening virtually on Thursday, May 27, 2021, unanimously adopted a balanced $4.6 billion Operating Budget for Fiscal Year 2022. The County’s new spending plan, which reflects a 2.2-percent increase over last year’s budget, takes effect with the new Fiscal Year, which begins July 1, 2021.
Following Council adoption of what Council Chair Calvin S. Hawkins, II, called “The People’s Budget,” he noted the impact of COVID-19 on Prince George’s County, and shared his optimism for its fiscal future.
“These are times like none other – not only for the challenges, but also for the opportunities before us. This final budget package is built upon sound and responsible principles of fiscal management, which we continue to follow. It will take time for our slow economy to heal, but Prince George’s County is not standing still, and we will not be pulled back.”
The Council concurred with the County Executive’s proposed $2.34 billion appropriation for education, consistently the top spending priority in Prince George’s County. Included among Council enhancements to the approved budget, was added funding to support a partnership between the Health and Police departments to improve Mobile Crisis Intervention initiatives, including the addition of mental health crisis workers to 911 and expansion of mental health crisis teams. The Council also provided additional funding for officer recruitment from Prince George’s County and to ensure adequate staffing.
Additionally, the Council increased funding for Federally Qualified Health Centers; supported the hiring of a consultant for a 10-year Homeless Plan update; increased funding for the County’s Youth Services bureaus; supported a Fair Housing Program to address unfair, wrongful evictions; and increased support for the County’s Developmental Disabilities Administration, to reduce the devastating impact of COVID-19 on operations.
The Council also ensured funding for housing rehabilitation along the Purple Line Corridor; funding to the Economic Development Corporation to support Purple Line Corridor businesses, including Latino entrepreneurs affected by the construction and the pandemic. There are also monies to develop and deploy the Prince George’s Supply Schedule in the County’s Office of Central Services, providing opportunities for County-based businesses, and to support a countywide flood assessment by the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers. For more FY 22 County Budget information, including additional Council-initiated budget enhancements and the Chair’s remarks, visit the Council’s FY 22 Budget Portal.
In bi-county budget action earlier this month, Prince George’s and Montgomery county lawmakers unanimously adopted new FY22 spending plans for the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission (WSSC); the bi-county portion of the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission (M-NCPPC); and the Washington Suburban Transit Commission (WSTC).