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Title: Kamenetz testifies in opposition to repeal of the Maryland Open Transportation Investment Decision Act of 2016

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.


 
 
Revised September 11, 2017