True to His Bipartisan Pledge, Hogan Literally Paves the Way, Approves Purple Line
Yesterday Governor Larry Hogan announced that he would move forward with providing state funding for the Purple Line, a transit project that would link the Red, Green, and Orange Metro lines.
The Purple Line would run through Prince George’s and Montgomery Counties, and both counties would join the State of Maryland in contributing to its construction.
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In his Thursday press conference, Governor Hogan said that the State would be paying $168 million towards the Purple Line, rather than the $700 million previously considered. Prince George’s and Montgomery Counties will need to pick up the rest of the funds to cover the project.
In addition to providing another Metro line in the two Maryland counties, the new project would also provide 23,000 jobs. Prince George’s County Executive Rushern Baker (D) was quick to recognize that fact in a statement yesterday, while at the same time saying that he will “thoroughly review [the] proposal” with several of his advisers.
Governor Hogan also used yesterday’s press conference to announce that Maryland will not be funding the proposed Red Line in Baltimore (a project that would come with a price tag of $2.64 billion), as well as to outline detailed plans for $1.97 billion worth of road and bridge projects, saying that, “We have a responsibility to the state as a whole, and with these projects we are investing in, we are going to touch the daily lives of citizens all across the state.”
Who can blame Governor Hogan for being cautious on proceeding with the Red Line in Baltimore? Personally, I believe that the Governor was right, for a reason that perhaps is just my own. In a previous article, I wrote extensively about how illogical and unfair it is for Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake to deny liquor store owners the city aid that they need to rebuild their businesses after being destroyed by the recent Baltimore riots.
If Baltimore City politicians cannot even respect their own business owners, how can they possibly take care of a nearly $3 billion project?
Focusing on road and bridge improvements, rather than wasteful projects, is a common sense, bipartisan approach. Only in his first year of governing, bipartisanship is the word that describes Larry Hogan’s leadership style.
Since taking office last January, Hogan has received positive reviews from republicans and democrats alike, especially from Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot (D), who serves with Governor Hogan on the Maryland Board of Public Works.
Anyone who has ever attended a Maryland Board of Public Works meeting, as I have, would know that when it comes to spending our hard earn tax dollars, Governor Hogan does not hold back his honesty and his critique for those who think they can sneak by the three member board with troubled funding requests that, up until recently, were just as much a part of Annapolis as the State House itself.
While it is possible that liberal, status quo individuals and groups may go after the Hogan administration for dropping the wasteful Red Line proposal and also for calling on Prince George’s and Montgomery Counties to step up to the plate financially regarding the Purple Line, one thing is for sure: last November, the democratic stronghold state of Maryland had to make a choice between a career politician who was determined to continue the tax and spend mindset of the previous administration, and a person with a business background and enough experience to realize a common sense solution when he sees it.
Maryland is seeing the benefits of sending Larry Hogan to Annapolis.
One would think that the traditionally minded politicos, bent on doing anything to disrupt the legitimate progress of Maryland, would not attack a Governor who has managed to improve our state more in his first year than the O’Malley administration did for the entirety of its eight years of governance.
You see, the traditional Annapolis political society is not familiar with a person who wins an election and then does what he or she actually promised to do on the campaign trail. And the one thing we are learning from Mr. Hogan’s first year in office is this: He’s not your traditional politician.
And that’s a really, really good thing.
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article belong to the author. At no time has he spoken for, or in behalf of, The Prince George’s County Republican Central Committee.