Wednesday, January 14, 2015
HOGAN NAMES " BEST HIGHWAY BUILDER IN THE COUNTRY " AS MD TRANSPORTATION SECRETARY
Hogan stressed that record, in the context of fiascos such as the still-unfinished Silver Spring Transit Center, for which taxpayers involuntarily forked over another $21 million after a County Council vote yesterday. "Pete oversaw the successful reconstruction of Interstate 64, and finished the $530 million dollar project under budget, and ahead of schedule - something that never happens here in Maryland," Hogan jabbed.
To the question of whether he would favor highways over transit, the latter of which Hogan has noted is utilized by less than 10% of Marylanders, Rahn promised to work toward a "very balanced network" of transportation modes. In 2009, Rahn was named Public Official of the Year by Governing magazine.
Cost will be a major factor in prioritizing transportation projects, with budget deficits looming.
Last-minute budget cuts by outgoing Governor Martin O'Malley and the Board of Public Works have been played up in recent media reports. But with a $750 million shortfall in next year's budget, and a structural deficit likely to last into the near future, Hogan's assessment of the situation was not quite as rosy.
"Our budget secretary said it's the worst he's seen in his lifetime," Hogan warned, predicting it could take "eight to ten years to get out of this mess." That budget secretary's name is expected to be revealed at another press conference on Thursday.