Carroll County’s proposed fiscal year 2020 Annual Transportation Plan includes a projected operating budget of about $2.6 million and a possible new Westminster bus route.

An expected $646,940 capital budget is proposed to continue existing services, including preventative maintenance and seven vehicle replacements — to take older vehicles out of circulation after only three of 10 requested replacements were acquired last year.


Of the $2.6 million operating budget, the county would contribute about $1.2 million, vendor revenue would provide about $680,000, and the Federal Transit Administration and Maryland Transit Administration would contribute about $790,000 in grants, according to the public works document presented to the Board of Carroll County Commissioners on March 14.

County staff told the board last week they also proposed a service expansion in the plan, with one additional vehicle for a new Westminster TrailBlazer route next year to accommodate the system’s growth.

The Carroll County community transit program provided over 157,000 passenger trips last year to older adults, persons with disabilities and the general public through door-to-door service and TrailBlazer route — and so far this year, more than 73,000 trips have been provided with a fleet of 40 vehicles.

Carroll County Department of Planning Planning Manager Mary Lane talks planning and careers in planning in this Q & A.

The TrailBlazer system saw a 3.5 percent increase this year in passenger trips and average passengers per day since fiscal year 2018, Transportation Grants Coordinator Stacey Nash told the board, so an additional TrailBlazer route in Westminster would be beneficial to add stops and decrease wait times.

Commissioners approved the plan and the future acceptance of grant awards, but not before asking questions.

“I’m apprehensive about the expansion,” Commissioner Eric Bouchat, R-District 4, told the public works representatives. “The transportation issue isn’t something I'm big on.”

County Administrator Roberta Windham said the new route will only be implemented if additional operating and capital funding is awarded to the county, though.

Jeff Castonguay, public works director, said it will cost the county $18,995.

“That's not a whole lot,” Bouchat said. “I think I can swallow that.”

The plan will now be submitted to the MTA for approval.