Everyone who lives, works, shops, moves and breathes in Maryland depends upon its infrastructure. Re-investing in infrastructure – a call being heard at every level of government – is good for Maryland jobs, business attractiveness, and quality of life across the state.
Every few years, the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE)’s Report Card for America’s Infrastructure depicts the condition and performance of American infrastructure in the familiar form of a school report card—assigning letter grades based on the physical condition and needed investments for improvement. In 2011, Maryland got a C-.
When the Maryland General Assembly passed the Transportation Infrastructure Investment Act of 2013, it helped. However, none of that new money improves local infrastructure. None of those new revenues go to local governments, who own and maintain 83 percent of the public roads in Maryland. According the the Maryland chapter of ASCE’s 2011 Report Card, of the 359 structurally deficient bridges in the state, nearly 69 percent of them are owned and maintained by local governments. It is time to look comprehensively at the infrastructure needs in Maryland, and address funding them fairly and sufficiently to keeping Maryland moving.
That is why MACo is advocating for a Local Infrastructure Fast Track for Maryland (#LIFT4MD). At this year’s MACo Winter Conference, “An Ounce of Prevention,” experts will address the need for a #LIFT4MD from a variety of facets.
Attendees will hear from Joel Griffith, Deputy Research Director at the National Association of Counties (NACo), who will provide an overview on how infrastructure needs are funded across the country – and how in no other state do local governments own and maintain so many public roads, yet receive so small a percentage of road-related revenues.
Rudy Chow, Director of the Baltimore City Department of Public Works will discuss the City’s work to fund a comprehensive wastewater collection system evaluation and rehabilitation program, in compliance with a 2002 Consent Decree with the United States.
It can be done. It should be done. But to get there, all leaders, stakeholders and activists need to work together to deliver the message clearly. That’s why Theresa McClure, Regional Strategic Communications Lead, HDR, Inc. will discuss how to use social media to advance the message that local infrastructure needs a #LIFT4MD.
#LIFT4MD: Local Infrastructure Fast Track for Maryland
Description: We all know it: our fundamental infrastructure needs a lift. Join MACo in advocating for a #LIFT4MD to strengthen our roads, bridges, water mains, wastewater systems, and public structures. It’s one of the few points which can draw consensus from both sides of the aisle, from both public and private sectors, and from all levels of government. The questions remain on how to fund this investment, how to stretch our limited resources wisely, how to leverage this opportunity to best stimulate our economy, and how to target the greatest of our many needs. In this session, experts will discuss the challenges involved and how we might begin to answer these questions and more about our local infrastructure funding options.
- Joel Griffith, Esq., Deputy Research Director, NACo
- Rudy Chow, P.E., Director, Baltimore City Department of Public Works
- Theresa McClure, ENVSP, Regional Strategic Communications Lead, HDR, Inc.
Date/Time: Thursday, December 8, 2016; 10:30 am – 11:45 am
The MACo Winter Conference will be held December 7-9, 2016 at the Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay Hotel in Cambridge, Maryland.
Learn more about MACo’s Winter Conference: