Friday, April 27, 2012

Change Maryland Announces One-Year Anniversary

As special session of General Assembly looms, taxes, spending under scrutiny

News Release
Contact: Jim Pettit

Change Maryland, a non-partisan grassroots political movement, is
celebrating its one-year anniversary today.  In less than a year, it
has become the largest citizens' organization in the state with over
12,000 followers on Facebook - more than the state Republican and
Democratic parties combined.  Much of the reason for this growth is due
to pent up frustration among those who are not identified with the
political class.

The special sessions of the legislature, slated to begin in mid-May,
with one to follow in August, are only a means for politicians to raise taxes
and re-visit pet projects. Change Maryland's message is focused on bringing
fiscal restraint and common sense to Maryland.

Addressing an example of a lack of common sense in Annapolis, Change
Maryland Founder Larry Hogan called attention to policies such as
Governor O'Malley's insistence on pushing an offshore wind farm scheme
off the Atlantic Ocean that would require financial support among
commercial and residential utility rate payers.

"As Maryland's budget negotiations were collapsing, Governor O'Malley was
addressing wind-energy proponents who chanted, 'all we are saying is give wind
a chance,' " said Hogan.  "It's difficult for hard-working families in Maryland to
understand the Governor's priorities when he participates in pep rallies for wind
mills as people are struggling to find work and keep the gas tank full."

When it comes to a lack of fiscal restraint, Maryland's budget has
increased from $28.8 billion to $35.4 between 2007 and 2012.  In the
so-called "doomsday budget," which was enacted by default, spending
actually increases $700 million, despite politicians who typically characterize
it as a "cut."

The special session beginning next month is due to the inability of
the Governor, Senate President and House Speaker to come to terms on
tax increases.  Although there are some personal animosities among
Maryland's top three elected officials, all are proponents of
increasing taxes to fuel more government spending.

Governor O'Malley, Senate President Miller and House Speaker Bush have
collectively held state office for about three-quarters of a century.

"When you talk about career politicians, nowhere is that more apparent
than in Maryland," said Hogan. "And Change Maryland is giving voice to
people who are fed up with politics as usual."


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