A Critical Moment for Transportation Funding in Maryland
Yesterday, the Maryland House Ways and Means Committee voted to approve HB 1515. This bill, proposed jointly by Governor O’Malley, Senate President Mike Miller and House Speaker Mike Busch, would raise about $3.4 billion in transportation revenue over the next five years. Without this funding package, we will have no money for any new transit, road or bridge projects beginning in 2017. Virginia recently passed its own transportation revenue package, and our elected leaders need to take similar steps to ensure that Maryland has a twenty-first century transportation system.
The Chevy Chase Land Company is a member of the “Get Maryland Moving” Coalition, which has been organizing support for transportation funding from business groups, environmental organizations, and transit advocates. Along with many other coalition members and Maryland residents, we submitted testimony at a Ways and Means Committee hearing on Friday strongly supporting HB 1515. County Executive Leggett also testified in support of the bill, and the County Council has unanimously endorsed it.
The Purple Line is one of the critical projects that would be affected by the lack of funding. The state and federal governments have already spent more than $100 million in planning and engineering for the project, but if Maryland cannot demonstrate to the federal government how it will pay for its half of the construction costs, the Purple Line will not qualify for federal funding and will fall behind other projects in the pipeline.
Maryland’s gas tax hasn’t been raised since 1992, and it’s time for our leaders to act on this issue now. Please click here to see how you can help by signing the petition and contacting your legislators.
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