What are G.O. Bonds?
voter approval, the City raises money for specific capital improvements by
issuing General Obligation Bonds or G.O. Bonds. G.O. bonds are debt instruments
secured by the full faith and credit of the City. Every two years, including
2012, G.O. bonds (termed as Loans in the ballot questions) are presented to
voters for approval on the November ballot. G.O. Bonds are used for a
variety of capital projects, including schools, parks, and libraries.
addition to being approved by a majority of the voters in Baltimore City, these
bonds must also be approved by the City Delegation to the General Assembly,
Planning Commission, Board of Finance, Board of Estimates and the City Council,
before bonds can be appropriated, issued and spent. The bonds are rated
investment grade and provide the City with a valuable inexpensive means to fund
projects. The 2012 Bond Issues will appear as questions A through I on
the November 6, 2012 election ballot.
The bond issue for Schools will provide $34 million to
continue building an educational environment that encourages the highest
caliber of teaching, learning and facility utilization. These funds will supplement other funds for renovations,
additions, new construction, and other capital improvements in schools. Projects could include a new southwest area
elementary school, completion of the new Waverly Elementary Middle School, and
improvements to various building systems.
is at an all-time high, and dropouts are down by 56 percent since 2007. As more
and more students are engaged and succeeding in school, juvenile crime in
Baltimore has plummeted by almost 70 percent.
the physical condition of many buildings is an obstacle to students’ achieving
their full potential.”
The Department of Recreation and Parks manages the City’s
network of parks, playgrounds, playing fields, swimming pools, and recreation
centers. This bond issue will provide $8
million for projects such as swimming pool renovation, recreation facility
modernization, park rehabilitation, street trees, and playground improvements.
remains committed to supporting and promoting efforts to revitalize and
stabilize neighborhoods. The City relies
on community development bonds to attract new investment and provide decent and
affordable housing choices and opportunities for our most vulnerable
populations. This $24 million bond issue
will support a range of housing and community development initiatives,
including acquisition and demolition to address blight, homeownership, major
redevelopments and the creation of green spaces and urban agriculture.
Development invests in retaining
and attracting jobs in the City, and in turn increases tax revenues. This $15.8 million bond issue will support important economic
development projects, including: commercial revitalization; infrastructure
improvements in commercial and industrial areas; Baltimore Heritage Area
grants; and improvements to the American Visionary Art Museum, Meyerhoff
Symphony Hall, Center Stage, Everyman Theater, the USS Constellation, and the
Maryland Institute College of Art.
“ In 2010, the Baltimore Development Corporation’s activities
created nearly 2,000 new jobs, while retaining more than 2,000 existing jobs,
leveraging an estimated $200 million in capital investment.”
The Department of General
Services is responsible for the capital construction and maintenance of all
City buildings including libraries, health facilities, police and fire
stations, and City-owned landmarks. This $17 million bond issue will be used to
improve life safety and fire suppression systems; building retrofits; and ADA
accessibility for City owned buildings. It
will also provide important capital funds for modernization of the Enoch Pratt
million patrons visited the Pratt Library in 2011. Over 148,000 attended free
programs for children, teens, adults, and seniors."
Walters Art Museum
$300,000 bond issue for the Walters Art Museum will contribute to the renovation
of this City-owned museum campus, which includes the Hackerman House, the
Centre Street Building between Charles and Cathedral Streets, and the building
located at 100 West Centre Street.
“After eliminating general admission fees in
2006, the museum experienced more than a 40% increase in core attendance and an
89% increase in family participation in educational programs. Improvements are
necessary to serve these expanding audiences and to provide additional space
for educational programming and activities.”
The Maryland Zoo
$200,000 bond issue for the Maryland Zoo will support renovations to the Zoo’s
aging buildings and the creation of a new penguin exhibit. This new exhibit will include underwater
viewing areas, “green” design elements, improved penguin husbandry conditions,
and water conservation.
“The Zoo maintains one of the largest and most
prolific colonies of African penguins in North America, and this colony is an
important participant for the successful captive management of this species.
The Zoo's new penguin exhibit will house up to 100 African Black-Footed
Penguins and include a water feature and underwater viewing for Zoo patrons.”
$200,000 Maryland Science Center bond issue will modernize and upgrade building
systems, including aging elevators used by school groups, visitors, staff,
volunteers, contractors, and vendors. This project includes improved physical
accessibility for persons with mobility challenges.
half a million visitors a year, including more than 80,000 students in school
groups, it is essential to maintain a safe and efficient building
Museum of Art
Baltimore Museum of Art bond issue will provide $500,000 to continue ongoing renovations,
to better serve the public, school groups, families, visitors with
disabilities, and community groups. The
contemporary, American, and African collections will be displayed in renovated
galleries, with upgraded roofing, fire suppression, and HVAC systems.
“Founded in 1914 with a single painting, the BMA
today has 90,000 works of art—including the largest holding of works by Henri
Matisse in the world. Many superb pieces cannot be displayed without expansion
of the museum.”
Help us spread the word!
If you would like more information or copies of our Bond Campaign Brochures and other materials, please contact Sara Paranilam at (410) 396-5935 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Coming Soon: Legislative Version of
the New City Zoning Code to be Introduced
The Department of Planning would
like to give you an advanced "heads up!" that the legislative version
of the new draft zoning code is coming soon!
After three years of review,
drafting, meetings, discussion and mapping, we are ready to deliver the
proposed code to the City Council for formal introduction, public hearings and
adoption. We are currently working out the schedule for a series of Planning
Commission hearings that will kick off in late November. Once the Bill is
introduced, all text and maps will be available through our web site at www.rewritebaltimore.org.
A formal notification and hearing notice
will be mailed to every property owner in the City, but we will also be
promoting the hearings online and in the media.
To be sure you receive future
announcements and updates, we are encouraging you and all other interested
parties to sign-up for our e-mail list here.
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