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The Anne Arundel City Council approves the budget for the 2025 fiscal year

The Anne Arundel County Council approved its fiscal year 2025 budget on a narrow 4-3 vote, along party lines. Council members Allison Pickard, Julie Hummer, Lisa Rodvien and Pete Smith voted in favor of the budget, which emphasizes public safety, education, community well-being and environmental sustainability.

The budget, introduced May 1 by County Executive Steuart Pittman under the theme “Staying Strong,” aims to maintain the lowest tax rates in the region while making significant investments in key areas.

Public safety initiatives

The FY25 budget enhances public safety by raising the starting salary for police officers to the highest level in Maryland, establishing a substantial pay package to retain current officers and funding the training of 70 new firefighters. It also includes hiring bonuses for detention officers and funds a program to ensure a sheriff’s deputy is present in every courtroom.

Educational investments

The budget funds Dr.’s budget request. Bedell in full, which provides an incremental increase and a 3% cost-of-living adjustment for teachers. It meets all current Maryland Blueprint for Education requirements. It supports several education initiatives, including funding for the Anne Arundel County Public Library system, Anne Arundel Community College, pre-K provider programs, a new high school athletics program and an after-school program for virtual tutoring and homework.

Community Wellbeing

Community support remains a priority, with $1.5 million allocated to the Anne Arundel County Food Bank and funding for the Department of Human Services’ SNAP program, which benefits more than 36,000 children. The budget also supports the Mental Health Agency’s Crisis Response Team and adds a position in the Department of Health to oversee the Cure Violence program.

Environmental protection

The budget supports the province’s new Environment Sub-Cabinet, which focuses on sustainability efforts. Funding is included for Jug Bay Emory Waters Nature Preserve staff and the expansion of the River Days Festival series, which provides free public water access at five locations.

Fiscal responsibility and critical services

Anne Arundel County has maintained a Triple-A bond rating from all three major rating agencies for the second consecutive year. The budget includes a nearly 3% cost-of-living adjustment for union and unrepresented workers and covers rising information technology spending for various public safety and administrative tools.

Adjustments and additional financing

The County Council has made several adjustments to its budget, reallocating funds from the delayed opening of New Village Academy to other education priorities. Additional capital budget programs and a new position in the library system were also funded at the request of the Council.

Council President Allison Pickard emphasized the budget’s role in investing in the community’s future. At the same time, Council Vice President Julie Hummer emphasized the budget’s comprehensive support for public safety, education and community health. Councilors Lisa Rodvien and Pete Smith also expressed their support, noting the budget reflects the county’s values ​​and priorities.

For detailed information about the FY25 budget, visit aacounty.org/fy25budget.