Testimony: SB 1123, School Facilities and Public Safety Surcharges and Report – Sunset Extension (Prince George’s, Support)

The Honorable Senator Michael A. Jackson
Chair, Prince George’s Senate Delegation
Miller Senate Office Building
Annapolis, Maryland 21401

Via: michael.jackson@senate.state.md.us

Dear Senator Jackson:

Please accept this letter of support on behalf of the Coalition for Smarter Growth.  We are the leading non-profit organization advocating for walkable, bikeable, inclusive, and transit-oriented communities as the most sustainable and equitable way for the Washington, DC region to grow and provide opportunities for all. We work extensively in suburban Maryland, focused on Montgomery and Prince George’s Counties.

We want to express our strong support for SB 1123, which would extend the current 50% reduced school facilities surcharge for multifamily housing projects located close to Metro and MARC stations. It also states that Purple Line stations can receive the same treatment by the governing body of the county. 

School surcharge relief for multifamily housing near transit is a common practice. In fact, Montgomery County reduces by more than 50%. These reductions are with good reason. Multifamily housing generates a fraction of the school-aged children that single family dwellings do. In addition, building multifamily housing near transit tends to be much costlier than building elsewhere. Easing costs and impediments to focusing more growth around transit stations is a critical action to help achieve Plan 2035 goals and accomplish the transit-oriented economic development that the county seeks. 

Thank you for your consideration. 

Cheryl Cort
Policy Director