Montgomery Co. Lawmakers Push Transportation Funding

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (CBSDC) — The Maryland House of Delegates started the year with transportation funding as its top priority, but some local lawmakers are frustrated that things have slowed down on the issue and are getting ready to take matters into their own hands.

Montgomery County members of the House met in a closed-door meeting Friday morning to discuss taking the lead on the issue and possibly putting forward a statewide plan in the coming days.

“The Montgomery delegation is going to come up with a proposal and, perhaps, take the lead,” Delegate Luiz Simmons said Friday morning after the meeting.

Delegate Anne Kaiser, chairwoman of Montgomery County delegation, said there won’t be any transportation funding without the county’s support.

“No transportation bill will pass without our leadership,” Kaiser said. “A lot of people want the fix; not everyone wants to raise the gas tax or make the other choices that make it happen.”

The lawmakers stressed that because Montgomery County is the state’s “economic engine” and will provide a good chunk of the funding, the county needs to receive more money than it has in the past for transportation projects.

“We need to ensure that an equivalent amount is flowing right back in, if not more,” Delegate Ben Kramer said. “This is not a money-grab by Montgomery County but an investment in the entire state.”

WNEW’s John Domen contributed to this report. Follow him on Twitter.

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