Prince George's County Executive Lawrence J. Hogan has used about$700 in county funds to mail 4,500 letters to county business leaders urging them to support his proposed budget before the County Council.
The letters, dated April 17, call on the reader to attend the council's publice hearings on the budget and adds, "prudence would suggest that you arrive early, before the special interest groups pack the room."
Hogan notes that the school board, with thom he has been feuding for several months, "demanded a budget increase of over $19 million," and adds, "this is totally unwarranted.
"To give the school board the extra money it wants," Hogan wrote, "I would have to severely cut the Police Department, the Fire Department, the Public Wroks Department, and assistance to such deserving groups as the aging."
County Council Chairman William B. Amonett said yesterday Hogan had used inaccuracies in the letter and had followed a double standard by mailing it.
For example, Amonett said Hogan's assertion that he would have to cut police, fire, public works and the aging to pay for the school board's increase was not quite true. "There are other departments than those four," Amonett said.
Amonett also pointed out that Hogan criticized former Executive Winfield M. Kelly Jr. during their election campaign last fall for using county funds to mail elaborate brochures that extolled improvements in the county during Kelly's time in office.
Hogan aide Robert Ennis said there is no comparison between Hogan's letter and the brochure, which he called "very expensive and in an altogether different ballpark."
Hogan refused to comment on the letter.