Governor Larry Hogan today reaffirmed that the administration’s top legislative priority for the 2017 session of the Maryland General Assembly will be the immediate and full repeal of House Bill 1013, more commonly known as the Road Kill Bill. At a State House press conference, the governor joined Maryland Transportation Secretary Pete Rahn in announcing the administration’s plan to submit emergency legislation to repeal the Road Kill Bill and return the prioritization of transportation projects back to local jurisdictions. The bill was passed and became law over the governor’s veto during the 2016 legislative session.
“Today I am here to announce that we will submit emergency legislation for our top priority for this legislative session, which is to push for the full and immediate repeal of this disastrous bill which will absolutely be responsible for the elimination of nearly all of the most important transportation priorities in every single jurisdiction all across the state,” said Governor Hogan. “It will wreak havoc on the entire state transportation system and usurp important authority away from local governments and away from the executive branch of state government, giving authority instead to lobbyists and special interest groups.”
“The repercussions of this law are quite simply disastrous for our state, and I can assure you that on behalf of our citizens, I will not stop fighting until this catastrophic bill is repealed,” the governor continued.
Due to an extremely flawed and biased scoring system implemented by the law, major priority transportation projects will be canceled in every jurisdiction in the state. Under the legislatively mandated scoring system, 66 out of 73 transportation projects are fully canceled, including pivotal projects such as:
Earlier this year, at a November 18 legislative hearing, Maryland Department of Transportation Secretary Pete Rahn outlined the law’s severe and fatal flaws and strongly advocated the need for full and total repeal. Under questioning by legislators, the secretary repeatedly stated that there is no possible method by which the department could create regulations implementing the law that would not result in the vast majority of these priority of projects being cancelled.
“The one-size-fits-all ranking system mandated by this law is wrong for Maryland drivers, wrong for employers relying on needed improvements to local roads and bridges, wrong for tourists and visitors traveling to our state, and wrong for Maryland taxpayers who expect their dollars to be spent in an fair and equitable manner on projects that will improve their daily lives,” said Secretary Rahn. “This administration is committed to funding top priority projects in all regions of the state, and the only way that can happen is if this deeply misguided law is repealed.”