Gov. Ho­gan praises state, lo­cal ac­com­plish­ments at MML sum­mer con­fer­ence

Dorchester Star - - Front Page - By VIC­TO­RIA WIN­GATE vwingate@ches­pub.com

Brookview mayor re­ceives Hall of Fame hon­ors

— Gov. Larry Ho­gan de­liv­ered re­marks to a packed ball­room at the Mary­land Mu­nic­i­pal League sum­mer con­fer­ence, hosted at the Ocean City Con­ven­tion Cen­ter on Tuesday, June 27.

Among his com­ments, Ho­gan an­nounced two new ex­ec­u­tive or­ders signed on Tuesday.

One ex­ec­u­tive or­der cre­ates a new state agency called Of­fice of Ru­ral Broad­band.

The Of­fice of Ru­ral Broad­band will work with lo­cal gov­ern­ments, tri-county coun­cils, and key agen­cies and stake­hold­ers, in­clud­ing BY VIC­TO­RIA WIN­GATE/VWINGATE@CHES­PUB.COM Gov. Larry Ho­gan speak­ing at the Mary­land Mu­nic­i­pal League an­nual sum­mer con­fer­ence.

the Mary­land Broad­band Co­op­er­a­tive, to pro­vide statewide ac­cess to high­speed in­ter­net.

The of­fice will co­or­di­nate ef­forts with the Mary­land Ru­ral Coun­cil on the Con­nect­ing Ru­ral Mary­land Act of 2017, a bill spon­sored by East­ern Shore rep­re­sen­ta­tives Sen. Ad­die Eckardt, R37-Mid-Shore, and Del. Johnny Mautz, R-37B-Tal­bot. The goal of the bill, passed this past leg­isla­tive ses­sion, is to con­nect fed­eral re­sources with lo­cales in or­der to bol­ster ef­forts to get high-speed in­ter­net in ru­ral ar­eas where res­i­dents strug­gle with slow in­ter­net con­nec­tions.

“This new Of­fice of Ru­ral Broad­band will en­sure that ev­ery­one in Mary­land will fi­nally be able to have ac­cess to high-speed In­ter­net,” said Ho­gan.

An­other ex­ec­u­tive or­der re­peals the Zero Waste Plan for Mary­land, a pol­icy set by for­mer Gov. Martin O’Mal­ley as he was leav­ing of­fice.

As for the Zero Waste Plan, Ho­gan said that the bur­den­some plan would be re­placed by a “com­mon sense, bal­anced ap­proach” to waste man­age­ment and re­cy­cling, in re­sponse to com­plaints from lo­cal gov­ern­ments on the pol­icy.

Ho­gan also high­lighted a laundry list of facts and fig­ures to demon­strate the im­prove­ment seen across the state of Mary­land, in many sec­tors, dur­ing his time in of­fice thus far.

“A lit­tle over two and a half and a half years ago, I stood on the steps of our his­toric state house in An­napo­lis, and promised to put our state on a new path,” Ho­gan said. “We said that we were go­ing to grow our pri­vate sec­tor, put more peo­ple to work, and turn our econ­omy around — and we have been do­ing ex­actly what we said we would do. To­day our state econ­omy is stronger than it has been in more than a decade, and the Mary­land Mu­nic­i­pal League has been a great part­ner in that progress.”

The gov­er­nor noted that Mary­land was re­cently de­clared one of the most in­no­va­tive states in the na­tion, ranked third for en­tre­pre­neur­ial busi­ness growth, third for re­search and devel­op­ment in­ten­sity, sec­ond for con­cen­tra­tion of STEM em­ploy­ment, and sec­ond for high­est share of tech­nol­ogy com­pa­nies. Over­all, Mar yland was ranked as the eighth best state in the na­tion, ac­cord­ing to U.S. News and World Re­port, based on data in 68 dif­fer­ent cat­e­gories.

Mary­land also boasts the high­est me­dian house­hold in­come among the states, and the sec­ond low­est per­cent­age of peo­ple liv­ing be­low the poverty line, Ho­gan said.

“To con­tinue that progress, we have made crit­i­cal in­vest­ments in our lo­cal com­mu­ni­ties, in­clud­ing, most re­cently, ma­jor im­por­tant down­town re­vi­tal­iza­tion projects in Sal­is­bury, Cumberland and Hager­stown, just to name a few,” he said.

The gov­er­nor called on the mem­bers of MML to join with the ad­min­is­tra­tion to fight the on­go­ing heroin and opi­oid epi­demic.

“In March, we be­came the first state in the na­tion to de­clare a state of emer­gency in re­sponse to this rapid es­ca­la­tion of the cri­sis,” Ho­gan said. “I del­e­gated emer­gency pow­ers to state and lo­cal emer­gency man­age­ment of­fi­cials, so that we could fast­track co­or­di­na­tion among state and lo­cal agen­cies, and we com­mit­ted an ad­di­tional $50 mil­lion in fund­ing.

“This is a fight worth fight­ing, but it’s go­ing to take all of us work­ing to­gether — fed­eral, state, county, mu­nic­i­pal, com­mu­nity lead­ers, faith-based or­ga­ni­za­tions, neigh­bor­hoods and fam­i­lies,” he said. “It’s an all hands on deck ap­proach, but to­gether we can save thou­sands of lives here in Mary­land.”

To con­clude, Ho­gan promised to con­tinue dili­gently in his work, and give his all to the job of gov­ern­ing the State of Mary­land.

In ad­di­tion to the gov­er­nor’s re­marks, the MML in­ducted 10 new Hall of Fame mem­bers Tuesday even­ing, in­clud­ing one of­fi­cial from the small town of Brookview in Dorch­ester County.

Richard Sul­li­van has served as Mayor of Brookview since 1996, a to­tal of 21 years. The Hall of Fame hon­ors those who have served a min­i­mum of 20 years in public ser­vice as an elected mu­nic­i­pal of­fi­cial. Sul­li­van was nom­i­nated by other mu­nic­i­pal of­fi­cials.

Cam­bridge was well rep­re­sented as all five City Coun­cil mem­bers were in at­ten­dance, along with Mayor Vic­to­ria Jack­son-Stan­ley.

BY VIC­TO­RIA WIN­GATE/VWINGATE@CHES­PUB.COM Cam­bridge City Coun­cil and Mayor Vic­to­ria Jack­son-Stan­ley at the Mary­land Mu­nic­i­pal League an­nual sum­mer con­fer­ence. Stand­ing: Com­mis­sion­ers Don­ald Syd­nor, La-Shon Foster, Robert Han­son, and Steve Ride­out, and Mayor Jack­son-Stan­ley. Seated: Commissioner Foster’s spouse John Foster, City Commissioner Dave Can­non, and his spouse Cindy Can­non.

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