Culver cuts capital spending bond offering by $2.5 million

County Executive Bob Culver has reduced the county’s Capital Improvement bond offering for Fiscal Year 2016 by nearly $2.5 million.

Culver said that, by working with the Board of Education, the county will eliminate $375,000 worth of projects and defer $2.2 million worth of projects for future fiscal years.

“I find it to be important to be great stewards of the taxpayers’ dollars,” Culver said in a statement. “These changes allow us to get the most bang for our buck today and in future fiscal years.”

West Salisbury School, which has generated controversy since Culver’s first day in office, will absorb $800,000 in deferred funds.

Culver insisted the move would neither delay systemic renovations or the replacement project.

“The money that was deferred will be made up once the project has been finalized,” Culver said. “This $1.2 million that is left will provide for the necessary architectural and engineering work.”

Culver also announced that the Salisbury-to-Mardela Springs “Rails to Trails” project was removed from the Priority Letter to the Maryland Department of Transportation. That annual letter lists projects for which Wicomico County seeks monetary assistance from the state.

“I heard the community loud and clear, and there was overwhelming concern with this project,” Culver said.

County Councilman Marc Kilmer, who represents the portion of the county where the trail would have been considered, said the matter had not been properly communicated to the western communities.

“The county cannot impose a biking path on an area that does not want it,” Kilmer said in a statement. “ Local residents need to be consulted more thoroughly before a project like this begins to be considered.”

Both of these changes were approved by the Wicomico County Council at the legislative session held Aug. 18.

A full list of the deferred and eliminated projects:

  • West Salisbury School Systemic Renovations — Reduced proposed amount from $2 million to $1.2 million. The deferred $800,000 will be made up in future years.
  • Delmar Systemic Renovations & Replacements – Deferred full amount of the project to Fiscal Year 2017 ($806,000).
  • Pinehurst Therapy Tank Conversion — Deferred full amount of the project to Fiscal Year 2017 ($275,000).
  • Portable Classroom Projects – Project eliminated ($375,000).
  • Mardela Middle/High School Systemic Renovation HVAC –  Deferred full amount of the project to Fiscal Year 2017 ($143,000).
  • Wicomico Middle Systemic Renovation Roofs – Deferred full amount of the project until Fiscal Year 2017 ($176,000).

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