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Governor’s Newsletter – March 3, 2017

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Message From Governor Larry Hogan

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Dear Friend,

With just 39 days left in the 2017 Legislative Session, we have been working hard on behalf of all Marylanders across the state.

Our robust legislative agenda of over thirty proposals to continue Changing Maryland for the Better is working its way through the General Assembly and I am confident we will make significant progress this session.

One of the issues at the top of our agenda is heroin and opioid use. Despite our efforts for the past two years, heroin and opioid-related deaths are on the rise here in Maryland and across the country. We need to treat this crisis the way we would treat any other emergency. That is why I declared a State of Emergency and additional funding to combat this epidemic. Find more information about our action below.

The First Lady and I had also the opportunity to welcome veterans with Warrior Events to Government House, pictured above. Warrior Events’ sole purpose is to enrich the lives of those wounded while serving our country as well as the lives of their family members. I would like to express my deepest gratitude to all those who have put their lives on the line for their communities and country.

Read on below for some of the latest information from our administration, and stay tuned to future newsletters for a firsthand look at the progress we are making in Maryland for all our citizens.

Your Governor,

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Heroin and Opioid Crisis – Declaring a State of Emergency

On March 1, Governor Larry Hogan signed an Executive Order declaring a State of Emergency in response to the heroin, opioid, and fentanyl crisis ravaging communities in Maryland and across the country. This declaration activates the governor’s emergency management authority and enables increased and more rapid coordination between the state and local jurisdictions. The governor, along with Lt. Governor Boyd Rutherford, also announced $50 million in new funding to address the crisis, as well as the appointment of the governor’s senior emergency management advisor Clay Stamp to lead the state’s coordinated effort to combat the crisis.

“We need to treat this crisis the exact same way we would treat any other state emergency. With this continuing threat increasing at such an alarming rate, we must allow for rapid coordination with our state and local emergency teams,” said Governor Hogan. “We must cut through the red tape so that we are empowering the important work being done in our many state agencies and at the local level all across our state. This is about taking an all-hands-on-deck approach so that together we can save the lives of thousands of Marylanders.”

Visit bit.do/MDHeroinStateofEmergency to learn more about the State of Emergency and additional funding.

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Governor Hogan announces he will declare a State of Emergency in response to the rapidly growing heroin and opioid crisis.

Lower Eastern Shore – Funding Initiatives

During a day-long visit to the Eastern Shore, Governor Hogan announced state funding for Lower Eastern Shore initiatives at a press conference at the Salisbury Chamber of Commerce, including $1 million for Salisbury’s Downtown Revitalization Plan, as well as nearly $29 million for projects across Wicomico, Somerset, and Worcester Counties.

“I am pleased to announce that our administration is investing $1 million for the Downtown Revitalization Plan to continue bringing much-needed improvements to one of our most beloved Eastern Shore communities,” said Governor Hogan. “This project is a terrific example of how state and local governments can work together with the private sector to make smart investments that spur redevelopment, economic growth, and job creation.”

For more details about all of the projects funded, visit bit.do/LowerEasternShoreInitiatives.


Before It’s Too Late – Combating the Heroin Epidemic

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Governor Hogan released a statewide public service announcement (PSA) urging parents to discuss the risks of heroin and opioid abuse with their children. The 30- and 60-second PSAs, titled “Before It’s Too Late,” feature actor Michael Kelly, star of an award-winning television series filmed in Maryland.

To see the 60-second video, click here.

“Addressing this crisis that is ravaging communities across Maryland and the country has been and will continue to be a top priority of our administration,” said Governor Hogan. “This epidemic affects people of all walks of life, and opioid abuse is becoming more and more common among our youth. It is critical that parents talk to their children about the dangers of heroin and opioid abuse – before it’s too late. I would like to thank Mr. Kelly for partnering with us to raise awareness of this important issue.”

The PSA will run on local news stations and public access channels across the state. Visit bit.do/MDHeroinPSAs to view and download the videos.


National Governors Association – Fighting for Maryland

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“We had a productive four days in Washington with the National Governors Association. I had the opportunity to participate in multiple meetings and briefings with the nation’s governors of both parties with the President, the Vice President, and many members of the Cabinet to discuss the interests and concerns of the states.

I had discussions with Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao and Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price, as well as other cabinet members and senior White House officials regarding particular concerns to Maryland.

We discussed the new FBI headquarters, which we hope to bring to Maryland, as well as critical transportation and infrastructure projects like expanding the Howard Street Tunnel for the Port of Baltimore expansion.

I also continued to advocate for our health care priorities, including increased federal funding to combat the opioid and heroin epidemic and, most importantly, ensuring that Maryland has a strong voice in the debate occurring around the Affordable Care Act.

Just as I said when I called a meeting in Annapolis with all of Maryland’s federal representatives earlier this month, we need to work to ensure that any reform and repairs to the ACA are done in a bipartisan, common sense way.

I appreciate the administration for recognizing the important role that governors play fighting for the people in our states.” -Governor Hogan


Helen Delich Bentley Port of Baltimore – Breaking Records

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Governor Hogan announced that 2016 was another record year for the Helen Delich Bentley Port of Baltimore’s public marine terminals, setting records for key targeted commodities. For the first time in its history, the Port surpassed 10 million total tons of general cargo handled at its public terminals and saw a record number of containers. The Port was recently named the most efficient port in the U.S. for the third consecutive time.

“With the arrival of these larger ships bringing more cargo, the Port of Baltimore is truly open for business. As one of Maryland’s leading economic engines, the Port continues to set new records and generate good-paying, family-supporting jobs for tens of thousands of Marylanders,” said Governor Hogan.


Commerce Corner

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Freshly, a health-conscious food delivery service headquartered in New York City, is opening a meal distribution center in Savage and plans to add 500 new jobs by the end of 2018. Expected to open in fall 2017, the new 171,000 square-foot facility will be located at Bollman Place and serve as the company’s East Coast location for food preparation, cooking, assembly, and distribution.

“It is a tremendous win for the state and for Howard County that the fast-growing startup Freshly is establishing a significant presence in Maryland,” said Governor Hogan. “This new facility and the 500 new jobs it brings underscores our administration’s promise to make Maryland more business friendly and create new opportunities for our citizens.”

U.S. News and World Report – Ranking the Top States

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Maryland has been recognized as one of the best states in the nation to live in by U.S. News & World Report in their inaugural “Best States” ranking, which analyzed data in seven key areas – education, health care, infrastructure, economy, government, opportunity, and crime and corrections – to determine the state’s composite score.

In addition to ranking eighth overall, Maryland ranked among the top five states for education and opportunity, a metric that includes factors like income disparity and upward mobility, as well as having the second-lowest poverty rate in the nation, and the highest household income.

“Maryland has made tremendous strides in turning our economy around, improving education, and working to ensure that every single Marylander has the opportunity to succeed,” said Governor Hogan. “We have made incredible progress over the past two years, but there is still more work to do to continue making Maryland the very best place to live, work, raise a family, and retire.”


Did you know?

The phrase “Green Bag Appointments” refers to names the Governor submits to the Senate for state boards and commissions each legislative session that are hand-delivered in a traditional green satchel. Learn more about Governor Hogan’s 189 “Green Bag” appointments at bit.do/MDGreenBag17.

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