Despite the tight financial conditions the city of Cumberland faces, the mayor and council are doing an absolute necessity by budgeting a considerable amount of money for city paving projects.
Conditions on some city streets can only be described as deplorable. In defense of city officials, this is a problem that has been left unaddressed by many previous administrations.
The proposed budget for the coming fiscal year includes $2.6 million for city paving projects. While that amount will cover only a fraction of the repaving needs in Cumberland, it is a step in the right direction. Another positive step is the establishment of weekly curbside recycling for Cumberland residents. Mayor Brian Grim said the city’s new hauling company, Burgmeier, will accept about anything that can be taken to a recycling center.
The city of Frostburg has had a curbside recycling program for many years. Despite discussion by Cumberland officials over the years, a recycling program has never been established until now.
Cumberland also will continue to spend money to demolish dilapidated or fire-ravaged properties. Again, this will be money well spent. There are many structures in the city that are beyond repair and need to be razed. The city had obtained $3.5 million in financing for the demolition, but so far the projected cost is around $2.1 million. However, with the demolition project only at the midpoint, change orders and cost overruns could still occur.
The Let’s Beautify Cumberland! program has done wonders in sprucing up various Cumberland neighborhoods. Using city money to pave streets and remove blight are also major components to beautifying the Queen City.