Wednesday, February 22, 2017

HEARING ALERT: Road Kill Bill Repeal

HEARING ALERT: Road Kill Bill RepealEmergency Legislation to Repeal Legislative Mandated Scoring System Which Threatens 66 Top Priority Transportation ProjectsNote: Senate Budget and Taxation Committee to Hold Hearing on SB 307 on February 22, 2017, 1:00 PM   
"This disaster of a law will wreak havoc on our state transportation system and usurp important authority away from local governments and away from the executive branch of state government, giving authority instead to lobbyists and special interest groups. I will not stop fighting until this catastrophic bill is repealed.”  - Governor Larry Hogan,  February 7, 2017
After Eight Years Of Neglect, Governor Hogan Has Kept His Campaign Promise To Improve Maryland’s Roads And Bridges
Candidate Larry Hogan: “We’re Going To Focus On Building Roads, And That’s Something This Administration Has Not Done.” (Michael Dresser, “Governor Candidates Are On Separate Tracks,” The Baltimore Sun, 9/17/14) 
  • In The 2017- 2022 CTP The Hogan Administration Has Invested $14.8 Billion In Transportation Projects; 60% ($7.8 Billion) Of Which Toward Roads And Bridges. (Maryland Department Of Transportation, 2/21/17)
  • Currently, Over 1,000 Transportation Projects Totaling Nearly $8 Billion Are Under Construction Across The State - The Most Ever In History. (Maryland Department Of Transportation 2/21/17) 
  • In June 2015, Governor Hogan Announced $1.97 Billion In Funding For 84 Highway And Bridge Projects Across The State. (Press Release, “Governor Larry Hogan Announces $1.97 Billion In Transportation Funding,”Office Of The Governor, 6/25/15)  
Governor Hogan Has Been An Outspoken Critic Of The Road Kill Bill; Disastrous Legislation Does Nothing To Move Maryland Forward
In His Veto Letter, Governor Hogan Criticized The Lack Of Transparency When Passing The Bill; Stated That Authority Would Be Stripped From The Executive Branch And Local Governments. “In a worrying preview of what could happen in future years, this bill was constructed in a secretive and haphazard manner with enormous input from political pressure groups but with no real thought and no meaningful input from the Department of Transportation. The obvious intent of this legislation is to severely limit the decision making of local governments, to strip the Executive Branch of its authority over transportation decisions and to create new mechanisms to divert taxpayer dollars away from highway infrastructure. Vague and imprecise language as well as multiple technical problems associated with the implementation of this bill only further diminish the quality of what was already poorly conceived legislation.”  (Letter From Governor Larry Hogan To Speaker Mike Busch: HB 1013, Office Of The Governor, 4/1/16)
Governor Hogan Announced His Intention To Fight For The Repeal Of The Law At The Maryland Association Of Counties (MACo) Summer Conference
At The 2016 MACo Summer Conference, Governor Hogan Called For The Repeal Of The Transportation Scoring Bill. Governor Hogan: “Let me reassure you that our administration will continue to fight on your behalf and we will push for the repeal of this terrible legislation. We will continue to do everything in our power to ensure that the top priority transportation projects of every single county will continue to move forward. But we cannot do it without each and every one of you standing up and fighting with us so that these desperately needed priority projects can continue to move forward.” (Governor Larry Hogan Remarks At MACo, 8/20/16)
The Road Kill Bill Will Cancel 66 Of 73 Top Priority Projects In Maryland
Governor Hogan: “If this law is not immediately repealed, the vast majority of jurisdictions in our state would immediately lose their priority projects.” (Remarks, “Road Kill Bill Repeal Press Conference,” 12/14/16) 
  • All But 7 Of 73 Major Transportation Projects Across The State Will Be Canceled If The Road Kill Bill Is Not Repealed. (“Chapter 36 Implementation,” Maryland Department Of Transportation, Accessed: 2/20/17)  
  • If Road Kill Bill Is Not Repealed, Only 4 Jurisdictions Would Receive Any Funding For Projects. “Chapter 36 Implementation,” Maryland Department Of Transportation, Accessed: 2/20/17) 
Members Of The General Assembly Have Backed Away From Their Strong Support Of The Law; Realized The Law Is Unworkable And Have Acquiesced To Changing The Law 
Senate President Mike Miller Stated That He’d Be Willing To Make Changes To The Road Kill Bill. “Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller said Wednesday that he's open to making changes to a transportation scoring law detested by Gov. Larry Hogan…” (Ian Duncan, “Maryland Senate President Says He’s Open To Changing Transportation Scoring Law, If Governor Asks,” The Baltimore Sun, 1/25/17)  
Senator Guy Guzzone: “If There Are Places That Could Be Tweaked To Address Some Of The Concerns That You Have, We Would Be Willing To Look At That. We Want This To Work.” (Bryan Sears, “Rahn, Md. Lawmakers Butt Heads On Transportation Scoring Bill,” The Daily Record, 11/18/16)  
Senator Richard Manno Suggested That The Members Of The General Assembly Would Be Willing To Work With The Hogan Administration On A Compromise On The Regulation. “Some supporters of the law say they hope it will provide an opportunity to work out a compromise with the governor. ‘We’ve extended an olive branch to the governor and (Transportation) Secretary (Pete) Rahn, seeking their ideas since they’ve expressed discomfort with the legislation,’ said Sen. Roger Manno, D-Montgomery and co-chairman of the joint Administrative, Executive and Legislative Review Committee.” (Bryan Sears, “Hogan, Md. Lawmakers To Collide Over Transportation Law,” The Daily Record, 12/11/16)   
Delegate Sandy Rosenberg Suggested That He Was Open To Repealing The Law. “We don’t end with repeal,’ Rosenberg said. ‘The goal of this group is to see how the Virginia statute could be enacted here with appropriate modifications for Maryland’s situation.’” (Josh Hicks, “Md. Lawmakers Signal Interest In Va. Model For Transportation Funding,” The Washington Post, 11/18/16)  
Misguided Legislators Have Consistently Stated That The Road Kill Bill Is Advisory Only
Speaker Mike Busch: “There’s nothing in this (law) that would make the governor fund or not fund anything. It just asks the administration to prioritize.” (Amanda Yeager, “Hogan Makes Overturn Of Road Project Scoring His ‘Top Priority’,” Capital Gazette, 12/14/16)  
Delegate Brooke Lierman: “Gov. Hogan seems to be creating his own fake news… It’s just a score, and that shows to us, the taxpayers, how we’re spending our money in a transparent way.” (Erin Cox, “Hogan Vows To Fight Maryland ‘Road Kill’ Law,” The Baltimore Sun, 12/14/16)
Delegate Karen Lewis Young: This action lacks merit because there is nothing in the bill that precludes the governor from funding whichever project he pleases.” (Karen Lewis Young, “Critics Of State Transportation Bill Took A Few Wrong Turns,”The Frederick News-Post, 1/13/17)
Delegate Mary Ann Lisanti: “To tell the public that two projects are not going to be funded is inaccurate… you can’t lose something that you don’t have.” (David Anderson, “End To ‘Road-Kill Bill’ Remains Top Priority For Most, But Not All, Harford Legislators In 2017 Session,” The Aegis, 1/18/17)    
In February 2017, MACo Voted To Support Governor Hogan’s Call To Repeal The Road Kill Bill
MACo, The Non-Partisan, Non-Profit Organization That Advocates On Behalf Maryland’s 24 Jurisdictions Voted To Support Governor Hogan’s Call For A Repeal Of The Road Kill Bill. “The Maryland Association of Counties (MACo), a non-profit and non-partisan organization that advocates on behalf of local governments to the Maryland General Assembly, has voted to support Governor Larry Hogan’s call for a full repeal of House Bill 1013, more commonly known as the Road Kill Bill… The vote to support Governor Hogan’s repeal legislation took place on February 1. MACo’s membership consists of county elected officials and representatives from Maryland’s 23 counties and Baltimore City.” (Press Release, “Maryland Association Of Counties Stands With Governor Hogan On Road Kill Bill Repeal,” Office Of The Governor, 2/7/16)    
Road Kill Bill Repeal
Road Kill Bill Repeal Legislation Calls For the Repeal Of this Disastrous Law; Noted That The Regulations Required by the Law Will Result In The Cancellation Of 66 Transportation Projects Across The State. “WHEREAS, The prescriptive regulations and their imminent implementation required by the law passed during the 2016 legislative session make it impossible for projects statewide to be scored and evaluated equally, resulting in the cancellation of 66 projects across the State; now, therefore, SECTION 1. BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF MARYLAND, That Chapter 36 of the Acts of the General Assembly of 2016 be repealed.” (“Senate Bill 307,” Maryland General Assembly, 1/20/17)   

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