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Archive for the ‘Martin O’Malley’ Category

Governor Hogan Creates Commission To Ease Anti-Business Regulations

Friday, July 10th, 2015

Maryland Governor Larry Hogan announced yesterday the signing of an executive order which creates a new 10 member commission. The Regulatory Reform Commission is being tasked with reviewing every regulation on the books as it relates to doing business in Maryland. This is a continuation of his campaign promise to make Maryland open for business. The 3 year commission will report yearly, no later than December 1 of each year.

Some people, including House Speaker Michael Busch were critical of the plan. According to the Baltimore Sun, critics are concerned that the panel is made up mostly of CEOs and Presidents of companies. They are upset because there are no non-profit or environmental members. What I think the critics fail to realize is that the panel is just part of a process, and a much needed process. The governor was elected in part because Marylander’s are fed up with being 49th in job growth, they are fed up with over-burdensome regulations. The panel needs to be able to work unobstructed to review the regulations, and to be able to highlight those that need to be revised or eliminated. Once the recommendations are put forth, then we as the citizens of this great state have the ability to voice our opinion, and to speak out against proposals that are unsatisfactory. The Governor can always appoint additional members if he determines the need.

Speaker Busch is quoted as having said “He has the right to review every regulation.” He continued that any legislative proposals would be “highly scrutinized” by the house. Of course that is the right of the Speaker, and we can be sure that he will. The Sun article points out that O’Malley had a similar regulation review that revised or eliminate 130 regulations in 2012. Speaker Busch also is quoted as recalling that Governor Donald Schaefer did the same in the early 90′s. As the Chief Executive of the state, Gov. Hogan should be reviewing every regulation, there are no doubt tons of regulations that need to be lifted off of the backs of our businesses.

Commission Members
Lt. Governor Boyd Rutherford, Honorary Chair
James A. Soltesz, co-chair
Abba David Poliakoff, co-chair
Susan J. Ganz
Jay Steinmetz
Henry Gilford III
William B. Grant, Esq., CFP
Jennifer Rhodes
Joseph G. Baldwin
Howard Bowen
James T. Brady

Governor Hogan Press Release
Baltimore Sun

Why O’Malley Can’t Become President

Wednesday, September 3rd, 2014

We all know that Governor O’Malley has been a horrible Governor for the state of Maryland. But even ardent followers of Martin’s shortcomings might have forgotten a couple of items on Blair Lee’s list. Check out his article from today in the Gazette. And while you are at it, think about whether or not you think O’Malleys deputy Anthony Brown deserves a promotion to Governor.

Martin O’Malley is running for president. He’s handsome (never takes a bad photo), sings and plays the guitar, oozes Irish charm and sports a solid liberal record appealing to most Democrats: gun control, death penalty repeal, gay marriage, minimum wage increase, aid to illegals, decriminalized pot, environmental regulations, fracking moratorium. He even gerrymandered a Republican out of Congress and chaired the Democratic Governors Conference.

He’s already campaigned in two dozen states including…

Read more…

Larry Hogan to Face Anthony Brown: Hogan Comes Out Swinging

Wednesday, June 25th, 2014

Larry Hogan won the Maryland Republican Party’s nomination for Governor last night. Anthony Brown also secured his party’s nomination for Governor on the Democratic side. And as the digital ink is barely dry on the primary ballots, the Hogan Rutherford team has already come out swinging in a stinging new YouTube ad.

Governor O’Malley put his Lt. Governor in charge of Maryland’s rollout of the Affordable Care Act. Unfortunately after spending anywhere from $125-175 Million on the website, they decided that it wasn’t fixable and the scrapped it. This new ad puts Brown on blast for his failure of leadership over this massive waste of Maryland taxpayer dollars.

Maryland To Pay ‘House of Cards’ Show $11.5 Million This Year

Monday, April 28th, 2014

House of Cards #HoCoPolitics First let me start by saying that I love the Netflix political drama “House of Cards.” News broke on Friday that the O’Malley administration had reached an agreement with Media Rights Capital, the producers of the popular show.

The O’Malley administration said the following in a press release “Spoiler alert: we’re going to keep the 3700 jobs and more than 100 million dollars of economic activity and investment that House of Cards generates right here in Maryland.”

I can’t help but wonder is it worth it? I can’t imagine that there are perpetually 3700 jobs that are created by this show. That figure must count every single employee at every catering shop in town, even if they only delivered one meal to the set. There are certainly hundreds of workers, some of which are from other states, that work as actors, producers, technicians, and extras. But to claim that “HoC” is going to keep 3700 jobs seems like an O’Malley’s fantasy.

I will certainly agree that having a major film production here in Maryland has some benefit in terms of workers trained and hired locally. Not all of the workers come from out of town, and having those jobs available locally allows our residents a chance to enhance their production careers.

This agreement will send $11.5 Million dollars to the network in 2014. According to Yahoo, this is on top of the $11 Million that the series received for season 1, and up to $15 Million that was allocated for season 2. The show has definitely helped the network as House of Cards is reportedly part of the reason why Netflix gained 4.1 Million new subscribers in the first quarter of this year. The company passed $1 Billion quarterly income for the first time in Q1 as well.

Outlook: Maryland General Assembly’s 90 Day 2014 Session

Wednesday, January 8th, 2014

The Maryland General Assembly reports to work today to start off a 90 day legislative session for 2014. Democratic leaders are hoping to raise the minimum wage, legalize marijuana, and spend more money on school construction and other projects. Republican leaders are hoping to cut taxes, including the highly controversial “Rain Tax”, and will also take major issue with Maryland’s fumbled Healthcare Exchange and website. Below are some expanded highlights of what we can expect in the upcoming session.

Minimum Wage
Currently the minimum wage in Maryland is $7.25. There have been some proposals to raise it over $10 per hour. Gov. Martin O’Malley, House Speaker Michael E. Busch and Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller have all stated that they would like to make this a priority for this year. Despite Republican opposition this will be likely to pass, the question is will it effect the whole state, and how much will it go up.

Rain Tax
There are possible changes to the “Rain Tax” storm water management fees in this session. Republicans plan to bring this issue to light given angry backlash from in some parts of Maryland. Republicans will likely call for a full repeal. Most likely there will only be small tweaks to the law, and they will likely only help non-profits. Will the citizens in the most effected counties make this a big issue for the Democrats?

There is already a sort of moratorium on “fracking” in Maryland, which is the process of using hydraulics to fracture the ground deep below the surface to mine for natural gas. Governor O’Malley already has ordered an environmental study of the relatively new technique. Pennsylvania and other nearby states are already working hard on fracking, but environmental groups are expected to try to get legislation passed barring fracking in this state.

Legalizing Pot
Senate President Miller is likely to support marijuana legislation to keep up with Colorado and Washington’s new legalization. Hopefully they will follow House Speaker Busch’s suggestion to wait and see how the new laws effect Colorado and Washington.

Early Education
From the campaign trail, Lt. Gov. Anthony G. Brown has been pushing for pre-Kindergarten in Maryland. You can expect to see some legislation toward creating a pre-K program that may be voluntary and would be half day.

Other Issues
The Baltimore Sun is reporting that the Assembly may also debate increased school new construction and building a new jail in Baltimore to replace the current scandal plague detention center.

Problems Still Plague Maryland’s Healthcare Exchange Website

Friday, December 13th, 2013

For several weeks Governor Martin O’Malley’s administration hasn’t been ready to address the public on Maryland’s beleaguered healthcare exchange website. This week we were treated to not one but two press conferences, the first by Lt. Governor Anthony Brown, and yesterday by Governor O’Malley. O’Malley tried to put a positive spin on the problems by saying “Bottom line. We’ve made progress.”

The state has installed new leadership over the health care exchange after the Executive Director Rebecca Pierce resigned December 6th. O’Malley acknowledged that while 6 of the 9 identified “glitches” in the website exchange were resolved, 3 issues remained unresolved. O’Malley was not able to give a timeline as to when these problems could be overcome. The remaining issues include frozen screens and incorrect tax credit amounts being displayed.

O’Malley said that just under 22,000 people had enrolled in either private insurance or Medicaid through the Maryland Health Connection, which is about 7,000 more than 2 weeks ago. Maryland’s goal is by March 1st to have 260,000 people enrolled in health plans through the website. The goal is to have 150,000 people in private plans and 110,000 people to Medicaid. As of now they have about 5,200 enrolled in private plans and 16,000 in Medicaid. So the website is currently enrolling 3,500 people per week, and with 11 weeks until the March 1st deadline, they will need to boost those numbers up to about 22,000 people per week.

Also of note is that O’Malley hopes to enroll more people into private plans than into Medicaid. But right now Medicaid signups are trumping private signups by a 3 to 1 margin.

The Capital Gazette is reporting that the state has spent about $70 Million of the budgeted $107 Million for the exchange.

Baltimore Business Journal
Capital Gazette

How Much Would O’Malley Pay To Get 1,000 New Jobs?

Thursday, October 24th, 2013

Officials from the State of Maryland and Baltimore City have been in talks with Amazon to locate a new distribution center for over a year. According to the Baltimore Sun, the plant would be at the site of the old General Motors site. That site has been determined to be an impoverished area.

The deal, will bring Amazon and the landlord of the former GM plant site over $43 Million in tax credits, loans, and incentives. The Sun article says that the incentive package will be worth $35.3 million in Enterprise Zone tax credits, $5.5 million in One Maryland tax credits, and $1.7 million in brownfield (previously contaminated) tax credits. The state will also loan Amazon $1.25 million, most of which will be forgiven if Amazon employs 1,000 people for 10 years. Also once the site opens, Marylanders will have to start paying the 6% sales tax on Amazon purchases, since it will have a physical presence in the state.

As you may remember Texas Governor Rick Perry put egg on Governor O’Malley’s face highlighting how unfriendly Maryland is to business. Governor Perry released an ad campaign touting Texas’s #1 Business rating.

So how much would Governor O’Malley pay for 1,000 new jobs? $43 million. Guess who foots the bill for these jobs? We do.

Source: Baltimore Sun

2016 Elections

Primary - 4/5/2016
General - 11/8/2016

Races to Watch

U.S. Senate

Barbara Mikulski (D) is retiring.

Top (D) Candidates
Donna Edwards
Chris Van Hollen

All 8 House Seats are up for election.

Current Representatives
1st - Andy Harris (R)

2nd - Dutch Reppersberger (D)

3rd - John Sarbanes (D)
Top candidates Dr. Mark Plaster (R).

4th - Donna Edwards (D) - running for Senate
Top candidates Anthony Brown (D), Glenn Ivey (D), George McDermott (?)

5th - Steny Hoyer (D)

6th - John Delaney (D) - may run for Senate
Top (R) candidates David Vogt (R), Kathy Afzali (R), Neil Parrott (R), Mike McKay (R).

7th - Elijah Cummings (D) - may run for Senate
Top candidates Calvin Ball (D), Corrogan Vaughn (R).

8th - Chris Van Hollen (D) - running for Senate
Top (D) candidates Kumar Barve, Valerie Ervin, Kathleen Mattews, Jamie Raskin
Top (R) candidates Frank Howard - potential