Transportation Commission Discusses Environmental Factors, Funding of Other States

The Blue Ribbon Commission on Maryland Transportation Funding met yesterday to discuss environmental factors affecting transportation, Federal funding trends, and how other states fund transportation.  Department of Planning Secretary Rich Hall spoke to Maryland’s Smart Growth efforts and how PlanMaryland will direct growth for the future.  Department of Environment Secretary Shari Wilson spoke to Watershed Implementation Plans and to new federal requirements to limit the amount of nutrients running into the bay.  She also referred to restoration activities to assist with stormwater run off.  Secretary Wilson commented specifically that the State Highway Administration has retrofitted about 600 acres of failing infiltration systems, but still has approximately 4,800 acres that needs to be done.  This takes a lot of resources.

The presentation that provided an overview of how other states fund transportation was of interest.  The presentation provided an overview of revenue approaches, compared Maryland’s funding profile to select other states, and examined for select states what funding sources are used for highways and transit capital and operating expenditures.

The Commission is tentatively scheduled to meet on December 2 and/or December 14.  It is anticipated that local governments will have the opportunity to speak at the next meeting.

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