Monday, November 14, 2016

Petition to County Council on MCPS Overcrowding

Montgomery County Council's November 15 vote on the Subdivision Staging Policy stands to eliminate ANY disincentives to build until schools are over 120% of their capacity. The Council plans to discontinue the School Facility Payment that is currently charged on development when schools are between 105-120% of capacity.
They say they'll make up the money with a higher impact tax. But that does nothing to discourage development or prevent worsening overcrowding.

There are some a good changes in the works, but the County Council continues to view the SSP as a revenue model and not as a staging policy. THERE IS NOTHING IN PLACE TO STEM DEVELOPMENT UNTIL SCHOOLS REACH 120% OF CAPACITY. We ask that they postpone the vote scheduled for November 15th and address the the MCPS crisis more fully. Our schools cannot be left to struggle for the next four years (when this policy will be up for review again). MCPS has NO answers and can't clean up the Council's mess.

While individual school tests are a step in the right direction, more must be done to ensure that our schools don’t get worse before they get better. MCPS capacity and renovation projects can’t keep pace with development. Capital improvement projects that will be completed in 4 or 5 years cannot be counted as adequate capacity, leaving schools and their staff to cope with increasing enrollment in the interim. Impact taxes aren’t an adequate economic incentive to put our children through this. School impact taxes account for only 12% of the CIP funding, and they do nothing to cover incremental operational costs – busing, staffing, materials, etc. – all of which are a net burden to MCPS, and not a boon at all. For these reasons we propose the following


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