Press Release - Office of the Lt. Governor
Lt. Governor Releases Maryland's Draft BRAC Action Plan
Presentation by BRAC Subcabinet Allows for Comment and Discussion
ANNAPOLIS, MD (November 19, 2007) – Lt. Governor Anthony G. Brown hosted a public presentation on Maryland’s draft BRAC Action Plan today at the Department of Housing and Community Development. Members of the BRAC Subcabinet were present to highlight each department’s priorities and answer questions from the public.
“Two years ago, the Base Realignment and Closure decisions tasked our state with a new responsibility. We have taken on a new role as a national leader in our homeland defense,” said Lt. Gov. Brown. “New challenges arise with new responsibility, but also new opportunities. Maryland is prepared and ready for the single-largest job creation in our state since the end of the Second World War.”
“I want to thank Lt. Governor Brown, the BRAC Subcabinet and all of the local and county officials who spent countless hours working together to develop this draft plan,” said Governor Martin O’Malley. “I look forward to receiving the final Maryland BRAC Action plan in the coming weeks after the public has had the opportunity to review the plan and provide their input.”
The public and regional jurisdictions impacted by BRAC were invited to the 10 BRAC Subcabinet meetings held around the state in the last five months. Each BRAC-impacted community presented their priorities to the Subcabinet during those meetings.
“During these challenging times, we are working together at the local, State and Federal levels and with our private partners, toward the goal of a stronger integrated defense,” said Lt. Gov. Brown. “The draft BRAC Action plan for Maryland takes the first steps toward prioritizing the infrastructure that we need as a State to protect and enhance the quality of life that we enjoy.”
In addition to input at the 10 community meetings, Maryland’s draft BRAC Action plan was formulated, with input from the BRAC Local Government Subcommittee, to present to the Governor the regional legislative and budgetary priorities for the State. The final Maryland BRAC Action plan will be presented by the Lt. Governor and the BRAC Subcabinet to the Governor in early December.
The budget component of the draft action plan reflects capital projects for Fiscal Year 2008 only. These items are ongoing and demonstrate Maryland’s commitment to moving forward in BRAC implementation activities. The legislative component of the draft action plan focuses on three main areas that will be submitted to the Governor:
- Maryland Higher Education Commission BRAC Fund – This proposed legislation will enable the Commission to support initiatives to address the higher education needs of the State related to BRAC. Maryland’s higher education community will be challenged to provide appropriate and accessible postsecondary education and workforce training opportunities to meet the needs of the new citizens coming to our State as a result of BRAC.
- Enhanced Use Leases – This proposed legislation will provide greater flexibility for the State and County governments to negotiate with private commercial developers and military installations the proposed Enhanced Use Lease (EUL) developments on military installations. Under the proposed legislation, a Payment in Lieu of Taxes (PILOT) would provide flexibility to adjust tax payments to reflect that military installations provide some governmental services, like fire and police protection. Giving a county or the State the responsibility for negotiating a PILOT with the EUL developers and military installations would promote a consistent approach statewide, allow for the consideration of regional issues, and give a county and the State more leverage in addressing its interests.
- BRAC Zones – The proposed legislation will provide local jurisdictions with incentives to build public infrastructure (e.g., streets, utilities and parks) in designated revitalization and redevelopment areas and provide incentives to locate BRAC employees and residents in targeted areas of the State in need of redevelopment and revitalization. The purpose of creating BRAC Zones is to mitigate the impact of the large number of people coming to the State by directing population growth to areas that are served by public transit but have underutilized capacity in terms of housing, public facilities, and infrastructure. In keeping with the principles of Smart Growth, which are to accommodate and encourage growth without contributing to sprawl, the program could include certain incentives, such as income tax credits, tax increment financing, and dedicated transfer tax for Program Open Space.
Maryland’s Draft BRAC Action Plan Highlights
- Create BRAC housing incentive for individuals that participate in the Maryland Mortgage Program that move to Baltimore City.
- Implement new “Maple Street” residential component of Main Street Maryland Program.
- Develop BRAC data information packages that local governments can use when updating their Comprehensive Land Use Plans or Community Plans
- MARC Growth and Investment Plan - adding seats and increasing frequency of service in Central Maryland; service expansions into Northern Virginia and to Delaware
- Conduct water studies in Aberdeen Proving Ground region
- Conduct technology assessment of water/ wastewater treatment plants in Harford and Cecil Counties around Aberdeen Proving Ground
- Establishes a "High/low" capital strategy for transportation
- Quicker to implement, less expensive projects: Intersection improvements, Commuter bus
- Large, regionally significant capital projects – major highway projects, MARC
- Incentives for growth in areas with mature infrastructure capacity (BRAC Zone)
- Conduct an interagency study to identify BRAC related contracting opportunities for Small, Disadvantaged, Minority and Women owned businesses
- Create economic development field offices at Aberdeen Proving Ground and Ft. Meade to encourage opportunity for small and minority business contracting
- Develop innovated Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) programs while recruiting and retaining highly-qualified STEM teachers
- Enhance Early Childhood Education by improving childcare access/quality and expanding pre-kindergarten programs in accredited child care centers
- Establish security clearance education programs for K-20 students, including developing financial literacy awareness, incorporating security clearance information as a speaker’s bureau topic, and launching an educational website
- Establish and manage the $3 million competitive grant program for BRAC higher education initiatives
- Establish “One-Stop” Transition Career Centers at Ft. Monmouth, NJ and DISA in Virginia
- Match security-cleared workforce who live in Maryland with comparable secured jobs in State through partnerships with federal agencies
- Target outreach to returning veterans to maximize earning potential
- Streamline Maryland’s occupational licensing requirements with those of BRAC “sending states” for employees transitioning to Maryland
The draft Maryland BRAC Action plan can be viewed at http://www.gov.state.md.us/brac. The public can send comments on the draft plan to BRAC@gov.state.md.us or by calling the BRAC Subcabinet at 410-260-6116.
November 20, 2007