Wednesday, February 22, 2012

2014 Comptroller: Former MoCo Exec Doug Duncan Stumps for Gas Tax // Op Ed Appears on Governor O'Malley's Blog

Last month, Maryland Juice reported on hints that former Montgomery County Executive Doug Duncan was weighing a 2014 run for Comptroller. Today, Governor Martin O'Malley's blog highlights a Washington Post op. ed. where Mr. Duncan stumps for the Governor's gas tax proposal (see excerpt below):
Doug Duncan on investing in infrastructure
February 22nd, 2012

By Rick Abbruzzese, Director of Public Affairs

As former Montgomery County Executive and now Chairman of the Suburban Maryland Transportation Alliance, Doug Duncan understands the importance of investing in infrastructure to rebuild our transportation networks and create jobs.

Key Points: “Our failure to invest has cost us tens of thousands of jobs, and the price tag will only go up if we don’t reverse course.”

“Almost $2,300 a year in wasted gas and extra wear and tear, according to the Road Information Project. Such congestion costs disproportionately fall on the backs of working families and the poor. Nothing is more regressive than severe congestion, lost opportunity and job losses.”

Why higher gas taxes are the right medicine for Maryland

By Douglas M. Duncan, February 17

For years, we’ve been hearing from experts across the political spectrum about the need to invest more in our failing transportation infrastructure in Maryland. The D.C. region is at the top of the list of the most-congested cities in America, and Baltimore is not far behind. Almost half of Maryland’s roads and bridges are in poor or mediocre condition, and 55 percent of our urban highways are heavily congested. Maryland’s construction industry and its thousands of workers have been decimated by years of severe cuts in transportation investment. Despite what is clearly a growing need, Maryland’s transportation program is a shadow of its former self. Our failure to invest has cost us tens of thousands of jobs, and the price tag will only go up if we don’t reverse course.

This year, in his State of the State address, Gov. Martin O’Malley called on state legislators to add $613 million in dedicated transportation funding by applying the state’s 6 percent sales tax to gasoline sales at the wholesale level. The governor’s diagnosis is correct: Our economy is slowly choking to death, and we know what medicine to take. The fact that it may not taste good going down is no reason to refuse treatment. Our region’s health suffered for years as we endlessly debated building the Intercounty Connector, a roadway that is now taking cars off the Beltway and giving motorists some relief. We need to take bold action once again.


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