Baltimore County News
County Executive says a clever slogan does not make it true
Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz testified before the Senate Committee on Budget and Taxation on February 22 opposing repeal of the Maryland Open Transportation Investment Decision Act of 2016. His testimony is reprinted below:
I am Kevin Kamenetz, Baltimore County Executive, speaking against SB 307. I speak not as the President of MACo but rather as the County Executive of the third largest county in the State, and a county that has 90% of the Baltimore Beltway within its borders.
A clever slogan – “Road Kill Bill” – does not make it true.
Nothing in the law keeps the Governor from building roads. The Governor is simply not telling the truth. And let me suggest why.
The Governor cut the Red Line, without public discussion or legislative input. He offered no Plan B, and the Baltimore region is still stuck in traffic. The Governor then diverted the money from the Red Line that was to be used for easing traffic congestion in the Baltimore region, to fund rural road projects that have significantly lower traffic counts. The Governor cut the tolls, but what he really cut was $54 million annually from the transportation budget. Now the Governor is facing a reduction in revenues due to the decrease of the price of gasoline.
Guess what? The impact of all of these decisions is that the Governor can’t fund major transportation projects that alleviate traffic congestion and promote economic development.
That, I suggest, is the real truth behind this clever slogan. We owe it to the public to have transparency in how and why we fund transportation projects.
@CleanGreenBaltCo is a “one-stop shop” for news and information on County programs and services that support sustainable living
Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz announced the launch of a new Facebook page promoting the County’s commitment to making our communities more sustainable. Clean Green Baltimore County serves as a resource for residents seeking to become better environmental stewards while also highlighting environmentally-friendly achievements throughout the county.
“We have such a good story to tell in terms of Baltimore County’s commitment to restoring streams and waterways, anti-litter programs, recycling, forest sustainability, land preservation and more,” said Kamenetz. “I’m excited about this new platform highlighting the work our dedicated employees do every day to protect the environment. The page is also a great resource for residents and businesses, featuring tangible steps to help people reduce their environmental impact. Please consider sharing the Clean Green Baltimore County page with your family members, friends and Facebook followers. We look forward to connecting with you!”
Clean Green Baltimore County posts useful information and resources related to various Baltimore County agencies, including, but not limited to:
- Department of Environmental Protection & Sustainability
- Department of Permits, Approvals & Inspections
- Department of Planning
- Department of Public Works
- Department of Recreation & Parks
- Office of Budget & Finance, Property Management Division, Energy Management & Sustainability Section
Visit facebook.com/CleanGreenBaltCo and “like” the page to see tips and strategies to help you “go green,” as well as sustainable success stories from around the County and noteworthy environmental initiatives from across the globe. Sign up for Facebook notifications from @CleanGreenBaltCo to stay up-to-date on our continued pursuit toward a cleaner, greener Baltimore County.
Says Governor is not factually correct
Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz responded to a form letter that he received last week threatening the completion of transportation projects in the County. The full text of the County Executive’s response is below:
Dear Governor Hogan,
I am in receipt of your form letter of February 2, 2017, seeking support of a repeal of the Maryland Open Transportation Investment Act. Your attachment asserts that the Act will result in the cancellation of six transportation projects in Baltimore County, five of which involve major improvements to the Baltimore Beltway. I am dismayed that you continue to assert a position that is not factually correct.
As you are aware, the plain language of the Act states: "nothing in this Act may be construed to prohibit or prevent the funding of the capital transportation priorities in each jurisdiction." The law simply requires the Governor to provide an advisory scoring process, letting the public understand how decisions are made when road projects are funded. The law even allowed your office to create the scoring mechanism.
I've previously requested that your Administration provide the data behind your scoring calculations. Since you still refuse to provide that data, I can only assume that the "scores" are simply a scare tactic. I urge you to inform us of the real reasons why you believe there would be a shortfall of transportation funds to complete the needed Beltway improvements. In the meantime, my constituents still remain stuck in traffic.
Very truly yours,
Baltimore County Executive
c: Honorable Michael E. Busch, Speaker of the House
Honorable Thomas V. Mike Miller Jr., Senate President