xml:space="preserve">

When Anne Arundel County schools Superintendent Kevin M. Maxwell departed to become CEO of Prince George's County schools last year, he left with more than $90,000 for unused annual leave and sick leave - raising eyebrows among education experts and union officials.

And also, apparently, county legislators. Two bills the Anne Arundel County legislative delegation considered Friday would limit how much the next schools superintendent can pocket.

House Bill 87, from Del. Herb McMillan, R-Annapolis, would prohibit the Board of Education from compensating a superintendent for unused sick leave while he or she is employed by any county other than Anne Arundel.

House Bill 216, sponsored by Del. Tony McConkey, R-Severna Park, and Del. Theodore Sophocleus, D-Linthicum, would allow a superintendent to get only the compensation available to any other county school board employee.

Unlike McMillan's bill, which applies only to sick leave, HB 216 would cover annual, compensatory, sick and personal leave.

The delegation didn't vote on either bill Friday, but delegates from both parties seemed receptive.

McConkey said that with the school system embarking on a search for a new permanent superintendent, he hopes the delegation can act on one of the bills to prevent "shockers" like Maxwell's departing payout.

House Speaker Michael E. Busch, D-Annapolis, said that before there's a vote he wants details on the "checks and balances" in contract negotiations between the school board and prospective superintendents.

That way, Busch said, if the delegation acts on one of the bills, it won't have to go back to the subject later to make up for something it missed.

As The Capital reported in August, Maxwell's contract with the county school system entitled him to 212.5 days of annual leave accrued since he took the job in July 2006.

Maxwell was able to convert all or part of that unused leave into additional compensation, calculated at a before-tax rate of about $988 per day.

Along with annual leave, Maxwell earned a day of sick leave each month.

It is unclear how much leave time Maxwell used before departing. But Prince George's County, according to Maxwell's contract with that jurisdiction, credited him with 65.75 days of sick leave he accrued but didn't use while superintendent of Anne Arundel County schools.

Republicans debut

'Disappearing Dollar Act'

Two Baltimore County Republicans took to YouTube this past week to blast Maryland taxes.

Advertisement

In "Disappearing Dollar Act," a wordless one-minute video with perky music, House Minority Whip Kathy Szeliga and Del. Susan Aumann briskly hand over wads of dollar bills before and after all sorts of activities - including going to the bathroom.

Check out the video online by visiting the Under the Dome blog at http://www.capitalgazette.com.

The video, Szeliga emailed Friday, "illustrates some of the taxes and fees raised over the last seven years by the leadership in Annapolis."

She called it a "fun parody."

"Of course, we've included the flush tax, because that's funny no matter what your age!" Szeliga wrote.

Former Republican Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. initiated that fee, paid by most homeowners. It funds sewage plant upgrades, septic system replacements and other efforts to reduce pollution in the Chesapeake Bay.

But Gov. Martin O'Malley supported doubling the fee in 2012.

In its seven years, the O'Malley administration has raised about three dozen fees and taxes.

Last year O'Malley's office said Ehrlich increased 31 taxes and fees - garnering $3.3 billion in revenue - during his four years in office.

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement