Well, one out of two ain’t really all that bad, especially considering that the Good One was Great and the not-so-good-one really wasn’t all that bad. Quite the auspicious start. More or less.
I am, of course, writing about the first two tangible actions of any real merit taken by the man of the hour, Maryland’s newly minted Governor, Larry Hogan.
The Good one: A few hours after his inauguration as Maryland’s 62nd Governor, Mr. Hogan yanked the phosphorous rule, stopping it from being implemented the first week of February.
Instead, his plan is to conduct a “comprehensive review” of the regulations, including getting input from everyday citizens – which is something I simply cannot imagine the recently departed former Governor, Martin Whatshisname, form doing. Folks on the Eastern Shore of Maryland should be rejoicing. If Hogan’s initial move is any indication, all of y’all may just yet have something of a real voice in Annapolis.
And, truth be told, although I kinda like a clean environment, too, I LOVE the fact that the various, bombastic, “environmental” groups are having a cow over this move. They are not pro-environment as much as they are anti-business. And, for them, the old saying that there’s “a new sheriff in town” has taken on a whole new meaning. Continuing to demonize farmers just isn’t going to work anymore.
(Demonize? No Demons here! Live the Change, Love the Change…BE the Change.)
The Not-so-Good-But-Not-Bad-One: Governor Hogan’s first budget; Okay, for the most part, who can really complain about a budget that reduces agency spending 2 Percent while swearing off furloughs and the like?
I can – particularly since there are no tax cuts in his first budget. So, as much as Larry Hogan campaigned against and complained about the “Rain Tax,” guess what is still going to be taxed in Maryland, at least for the foreseeable future? That, and the fact I was hoping to see a 10% cut across the board (Sigh).
That aside, please consider this, from my friend and colleague, Jason Boisvert’s Blog: (:http://jasonboisvert.blogspot.com/2015/01/governor-hogans-new-budget-no-tax-cuts.html)
“…Governor Hogan announced his first budget yesterday, January 22nd, announcing a two-percent reduction in state agency spending. (I can’t tell if the cut is an actual cut in the base budgets or just the rate of increase. If someone knows for sure, tell me.) Reuters reports that this cut was actually instituted by former Governor O’Malley in his final budget…” and
“Governor Hogan swore off tax cuts this year, and made no mention of the tax and fee increases of the last eight years. He focused instead on balancing and stabilizing the budget this year…”
Mr. Boisvert nails the exact reason I am giving Larry Hogan a bit of a pass on his first tax cut-less budget: “He focused instead on balancing and stabilizing” it in his first year.
But, NEXT year could be a whole different story.
Regardless, at least it’s not more of the previous 8 years where all Marylanders (citizens as well as corporations) were greasing themselves up for another go ‘round while the legislature is in session and the Governor is exercising and flexing his muscles as he comes up from behind you, this year we will at least know that, although we aren’t getting anything back…they’re not going to take anything new from us.
That’s a good thing.