Mapping the Budget Part II: Ward Breakdown
Council president releases spreadsheet breaking down location of capital improvements by ward.
In the wake of last night's impasse on the five-year Capital Improvement Budget, Council President Matt McKnight (Ward 3), has released a spreadsheet breaking down proposed capital spending by ward.
It's a reaction to criticisms of the CIP leveled by Ward 4 Councilor Paula Perry and Ward 5 Councilor Ruth Ann Frazier, who said during last night's meeting that the proposed long term capital budget does not provide enough for West Hyattsville. In that vein, they charged that the budget was a reflection of perceived historical inequities in the city's administration of the poorer West Hyattsville neighborhoods, which contain a majority of the city's Hispanic residents.
"I think the argument is a bit ridiculous," wrote McKnight in an email to Patch in response to a map of the CIP investments published earlier today. "We don't budget by ward. Almost all of the capital that the city actually owns is either mobile or physically situated in Ward 1. And the irony, at least to my mind, is that the one large piece of capital we do own in Ward 5 that we are investing in apparently 'doesn't count' because Paula and Ruth Ann were opposed to purchasing it way back when (before I was on council)."
Indeed, the second most expensive capital improvement called for in the long term budget is the projected $4.52 million to renovate the old BB&T building.
And while the Patch CIP budget map had to tie down spending to specific locations, McKnight's spreadsheet takes a step back and looks at the spending by ward. Much of the data points for administrative capital improvements and tech acquisitions which were located at City Hall in the Patch map are now rendered perhaps more accurately in McKnight's spreadsheet as "citywide" improvements.