County Executive Glassman to Recommend Funding for Law Enforcement Body Cameras, Aberdeen Community Center, Quantifying Forested Lands
County Executive Barry Glassman announced Tuesday that Harford County remains fiscally strong and introduced several new initiatives, even as he warned of unpredictable headwinds from the pandemic.
In his seventh annual State of the County Address, the county executive said his upcoming fiscal year 2022 budget recommendation would include funding for body cameras for the Harford County Sheriff’s Office, building an Aberdeen Community Center and partnering with the Chesapeake Conservancy to quantify the county’s forested lands.
So far, he said, the county has not needed to make cuts or dip into reserves, which have been restored to weather challenges ahead. Revenue is on track to grow by 2%. He said the county has a diverse economic base and continues to be a desirable place to live, as evidenced by its hot housing market.
At the same time he cautioned that significant, unpredictable concerns remain, including the rollout of vaccines, the availability of federal aid, the extent of statewide business closures, and potential cost-shifting from the state to local governments.
“Over the last six years I have navigated the County to a position of fiscal strength,” he said. “Quite frankly, that is allowing us to sail these stormy seas brought on by the pandemic … What I can say is we have built a solid ship with a resilient local economy, and my conservative budgeting has restored strong reserves without tax increases as we made record-level investments in education, public safety and local businesses. I do not plan on changing course, turning back or lowering our sails.”
The county executive also praised county employees for keeping the county government operating and continuing to serve citizens and businesses throughout the crisis. He presented a brief video of his administration’s accomplishments in 2020: https://youtu.be/VTvmIqsFxZc
Due to the pandemic, the county executive’s State of the County Address was presented via video to the County Council and the public. Video is posted here: https://youtu.be/S65QrJAC_j4
Text of the speech is published online at http://www.harfordcountymd.gov/1826/State-of-the-County-Addresses