Good morning it’s great to be here.
I want to congratulate Bill Marriott, Arne Sorenson, Trish Primrose, and the entire Marriott team; Stuart and Adam Bernstein and everyone at the Bernstein companies; Ray Ritchey and his team at Boston Properties; and everyone else who has been involved in this exciting achievement for Bethesda, for Montgomery County, and for the entire State of Maryland.
I want to thank Secretary Mike Gill of our Department of Commerce and our entire state team who worked hard with Marriott and Montgomery County to help get this deal done and to make today possible.
We had the best year for business in more than a decade, the best year for job growth in 15 years. We went from losing 100,000 jobs to gaining 100,000 jobs. More businesses have been opened and more people are working in Maryland than at any other time in the history of our state.
Just before I became Governor, our state economy ranked 49th out of 50 states. Now two recent rankings have Maryland ranked in the top 10 in America!
Today’s groundbreaking is another powerful and shining example that Maryland is open for business.
Marriott has shown such loyalty and commitment to Maryland over more than 60 years, supporting more than 10,000 Maryland jobs and generating more than $430 million into our state economy annually.
And now Marriott’s footprint in Maryland will grow even further with this brand new $600-million-dollar corporate headquarters and flagship hotel complex right here in Bethesda, which will be the home to more than 3,500 employees.
I again want to sincerely thank Bill Marriott, Arne Sorenson, and everyone involved in this project for their commitment and dedication to the great State of Maryland.
We could not be more proud that Marriott, this iconic Maryland company, worldwide brand, and the largest hotel company in the world, is headquartered right here in Maryland.
Thank you again for the opportunity to be here, and congratulations!