Increased funding for schools, roads, and preserving local authority related to small cellular tower infrastructure were among the wins for Rockville during the 2019 Maryland General Assembly session that concluded April 8.

Lawmakers approved funds for addressing growing enrollment and overcrowding in county schools. That included a one-time infusion of $25.9 million to Montgomery County through a state grant program focused on school systems with significant enrollment growth. Ultimately, the county is expected to receive more than the $59.2 million in state aid for school construction assumed in County Executive Marc Elrich’s recommended capital budget for Fiscal Year 2020, which begins July 1.

Rockville will receive about $2.7 million in highway user revenue for road maintenance and small infrastructure projects. This is the first year of a five-year funding increase included in the state budget. The increase will help pay for bridge rehabilitation projects

A bill, strongly opposed by the city, that would severely restrict the ability of municipalities to control the siting and installation of small cellular antennas and distributed antennae systems used in wireless networks was referred to summer study. So too was a bill that would allow municipalities to impose a fee for permit review and rental of space in a municipal right of way

The General Assembly also passed legislation, supported by the Mayor and Council, that requires statewide action to increase the deployment of new renewable energy systems and the creation of more jobs in the clean energy sector, particularly solar and wind

The District 17 delegation to the General Assembly will present the Mayor and Council with a report on the session on Monday, May 6. For more details, contact Linda Moran at lmoran@rockvillemd.gov or 240-314-8115.