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Home Local Maryland Government Announcement Originally published February 20, 2013

LT. GOVERNOR BROWN TESTIFIES ON BEHALF OF ADMINISTRATION’S PUBLIC-PRIVATE PARTNERSHIPS LEGISLATION



LT. GOVERNOR BROWN TESTIFIES ON BEHALF OF ADMINISTRATION’S PUBLIC-PRIVATE PARTNERSHIPS LEGISLATION

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT:
Lauren Gibbs
Office: 410-260-3847
Cell: 410-570-3115

 

LT. GOVERNOR BROWN TESTIFIES ON

BEHALF OF ADMINISTRATION’S PUBLIC-

PRIVATE PARTNERSHIPS LEGISLATION

 

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (February 20, 2013) – Today, Lt. Governor Anthony G. Brown testified before the Senate Budget & Taxation Committee in support of the O’Malley-Brown Administration’s Public-Private Partnerships legislation (SB358/HB560). The bill creates a framework for future public-private partnerships (P3s) that will provide the private sector with a stronger, more predictable and streamlined process that balances risks and protects public assets, while ensuring a strong workforce. It is prospective and revenue neutral. Last week, the Lt. Governor testified in favor of the legislation before the House Environmental Matters Committee.
 
“As Maryland continues to grow and thrive, we’re going to have to find innovative ways to address our shared infrastructure challenges, and while Public-Private Partnerships are not a complete solution, we know that they can finance six to ten percent of our capital budget and create thousands of jobs,” said Lt. Governor Anthony Brown. “This legislation will help define the rules of the road for future Public-Private partnerships, which will attract more private sector investment and allow us to do these deals more often, creating jobs and developing infrastructure to support our growing economy and communities.”
 
Specifically, the legislation will add additional oversight at the beginning of a project, while reducing the amount of time for a project to receive final approval; require open and competitive solicitations for all projects; and allow the private sector to submit new “unsolicited” concepts to address Maryland’s infrastructure needs. While Maryland has entered into three P3 deals over the past five years, the private sector, Department of Legislative Services and General Assembly have asked that the Administration improve Maryland’s P3 process before pursuing additional projects.
 
The Administration’s bill stems from a series of recommendations developed in 2012 by the Joint Legislative and Executive Commission on Oversight of Public-Private Partnerships, chaired by Lt. Governor Brown
 <http://www.governor.maryland.gov/ltgovernor/pressreleases/120110.asp. The fifteen member Commission was established in 2010 under HB 1370/SB 979 to evaluate and improve the State’s framework for and oversight of public-private partnerships.  The recommendations were developed after input from various stakeholders at the Commission’s six public meetings, as well as a Maryland Forward policy forum attended by over 200 representatives from the labor, business, transportation, construction, and other infrastructure-related communities <http://www.governor.maryland.gov/ltgovernor/pressreleases/111104.asp. Specifically, the legislation will clarify the State’s definition of a P3, strengthen and increase transparency for the P3 review process, and lay the foundation for improved coordination among State agencies.
 
Initial estimates by Maryland departments overseeing capital projects have found that additional utilization of public-private partnerships could contribute between six percent and ten percent, or $205 million and $315 million respectively, of Maryland’s $3.1 billion annual capital budget while creating as many as 4,000 jobs.  This includes an estimated $160 million to $240 million annually that could be invested in Maryland transportation projects through public-private partnerships.
 
The 2011 Maryland Blue Ribbon Commission on Transportation Funding found that the State needs an additional $870 million annually in new transportation revenues to address current needs. One of the recommendations in the Commission’s final report
 <http://www.mdot.maryland.gov/Office%20of%20Planning%20and%20Capital%20Programming/Blue_Ribbon/Documents/BRC_Final_Report_Nov_01_2011.pdfwas to consider legislation to facilitate partnerships with the private sector in order to enhance transportation funding.
 
Lt. Governor Brown leads the O’Malley-Brown Administration’s economic development portfolio. In addition to his role as Chair of the Joint Legislative and Executive Commission on Oversight of Public-Private Partnerships, the Lt. Governor chairs Maryland’s FastTrack initiative – part of Maryland Made Easy (www.easy.maryland.gov
<http://www.easy.maryland.gov/) – to streamline the state permitting process for businesses and developers and serves as Chair of the Governor’s Subcabinet on Base Realignment and Closure.