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“You’re Hired” Conference Theme Emphasizes Workforce and Economic Development

Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz, President of the Maryland Association of Counties (MACo) and Ocean City Mayor Rick Meehan in welcomed local government officials this morning to MACo’s annual summer conference at the Roland E. Powell Convention Center in Ocean City.

This year’s conference theme, “You’re Hired” reflects an emphasis on working together to grow Maryland’s workforce and economic opportunities in diverse industries including technology, the military, clean energy, the environment, agriculture and education. The conference kicked off yesterday with a Tech Expo hosted by MACo and the Maryland Technology Council, and it features two full days of educational sessions offering valuable opportunities for local officials to learn from each other and share best practices. Session topics range from economic and workforce development to the opioid crisis, cannabis business regulation, recreation, environmental justice, land use and much more.

“If you think about it, local government truly touches every element of our lives and this conference offers local decision-makers valuable opportunities to share insights and experience on the issues making headlines as well as the more mundane, but equally critical, services we provide our residents every day,” Kamenetz said.

“Ocean City is kind of a second hometown for most Marylanders and we are delighted to, once again, host the hard-working people who make our local governments work and help to make Maryland one of the best-run states in the country,” said Ocean City Mayor Rick Meehan. Mayor Meehan presented County Executive Kevin Kamenetz with a ceremonial “key to O.C.” as they welcomed conference attendees.

This year’s conference attracted 2,800 registrants from around the state including local government staffers, elected officials, lawmakers and business representatives. Attendance is up from approximately 2,500 attendees last year, with about one-third of all county government elected officials from the state participating.

MACo was founded in 1939, as a non-partisan organization to advocate the needs of local government to the Maryland General Assembly, representing all of Maryland’s 23 counties and Baltimore City. Kamenetz is the fifth Baltimore County Executive to serve as President in the history of MACo, succeeding Christian Kahl, Dale Anderson, Dutch Ruppersberger and Jim Smith. With this new term, Kamenetz also becomes the longest serving current member of MACo, first joining in 1994 as a member of the Baltimore County Council. 


Discusses MACo’s Advocacy for Maryland's Counties

Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz, President of the Maryland Association of Counties (MACo), met with local legislators on the lower Eastern Shore yesterday while he was attending the Maryland Municipal League’s annual conference in Ocean City. He spent time with the Worcester County Commissioners and the Wicomico County Council members as part of an ongoing tour of the state’s major subdivisions.

Leaders of these legislative bodies sat down with Kamenetz and MACo Executive Director Michael Sanderson to discuss an overview of MACo’s advocacy for Maryland counties in Annapolis at this year’s General Assembly session and about the value of MACo conferences where local officials can learn from each other and build beneficial relationships. Wicomico and Worcester county leaders raised the issues of transportation funding from the state and the challenging constraints of the state’s school funding formula. Wicomico officials also touched on plans for water and sewer build-out and the local airport.

“I really appreciate the time that our colleagues in Wicomico and Worcester spent with us sharing their goals and challenges,” said Kamenetz. “It goes to show you that whether you are governing on Maryland’s beautiful Eastern Shore, in our mountains or in the City, we all have the same basic charge to provide our people with a good education, transportation options and basic health and safety.”

MACo, first organized in 1939, is a non-partisan organization that advocates the needs of local government to the Maryland General Assembly, representing all of Maryland’s 23 counties and Baltimore City. Kamenetz is the fifth Baltimore County Executive to serve as President in the history of MACo, succeeding Christian Kahl, Dale Anderson, Dutch Ruppersberger and Jim Smith. With this new term, Kamenetz also becomes the longest serving current member of MACo, first joining in 1994 as a member of the Baltimore County Council. 

Kamenetz also brought greetings to colleagues from around the state at this week’s Maryland Municipal League’s annual conference in Ocean City. 


Discusses Shared Concerns Including the State’s Inadequate Transportation and Education Funding

Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz, President of the Maryland Association of Counties (MACo), spent time this afternoon in Upper Marlboro conferring with members of the Prince George’s County Council as part of his statewide tour to meet with local leaders and discuss MACo’s priorities and advocacy for county governments. 

Kamenetz and MACo Executive Director Michael Sanderson discussed a wide range of topics with the Council members including issues of insufficient state funding for transportation and education, traffic congestion and the need to better link education priorities with economic development opportunities.  Specifically, County Council members brought up the alarming deficiencies in state Highway User Revenues provided to counties for road maintenance, the need for a better integrated transportation network to alleviate commuter congestion between Prince George’s County and Southern Maryland and the challenges of dealing with school overcrowding given the limited school construction allocations from the state.   

“I found it quite remarkable to hear the degree to which leaders in Prince George’s are confronting the exact same issues we deal with in Baltimore County as similar suburban jurisdictions,” Kamenetz said. “At the local level, it really comes down to schools, transportation and jobs, and we simply need more targeted state attention to meet these basic needs.”

In addition to comparing notes on policy and budget issues, Kamenetz and Sanderson also gave an overview of how MACo worked to protect the interests of Maryland counties in Annapolis during this year’s General Assembly session, and they promoted MACo conferences as valuable opportunities for local officials to learn from each other and share best practices.

MACo was founded in 1939, as a non-partisan organization to advocate the needs of local government to the Maryland General Assembly, representing all of Maryland’s 23 counties and Baltimore City. Kamenetz is the fifth Baltimore County Executive to serve as President in the history of MACo, succeeding Christian Kahl, Dale Anderson, Dutch Ruppersberger and Jim Smith. With this new term, Kamenetz also becomes the longest serving current member of MACo, first joining in 1994 as a member of the Baltimore County Council. 


 
 
Revised September 26, 2016