Governor Talks Taxes, Teacher Pensions, Tolls and Other Topics on Radio Show

As mentioned in a previous blog on the Governor’s address during the MACo summer conference, Governor O’Malley was on WTOP’s radio show “Ask the Governor” with Mark Segraves and discussed a wide range of topics including taxes, teacher pensions, and toll increases.  According to coverage in the Baltimore Sun and the Herald Mail, the Governor offered these comments.

Teacher Pensions

O’Malley signaled a continued hesitation to transfer the costs associated with teacher pensions to county governments.
“I have always been in favor of keeping it at the state level,” said O’Malley, who was Baltimore’s mayor before he became governor in 2007. “Look, we faced an equity issue in our state. Poor jurisdictions with lower tax bases were not able to give their children, provide their children, an equitable education. Part of the way we offset that is through this common platform of ours known as the state of Maryland.”

Tax Increases

O’Malley, who said Saturday at the summer conference of the Maryland Association of Counties in Ocean City that Maryland needs to be open to tax increases as well as cuts in addressing budget problems and transportation infrastructure concerns, avoided elaborating on how he thought the state should raise new revenue.

Tolls

O’Malley floated the idea that the state’s tolls should be “indexed.” The state’s toll costs have not risen in decades, though this year there’s going to be a hike in order to pay for two massive transportation projects that are underway.

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