Franchot toasts good news about wineries
Comptroller Peter Franchot has apparently grown weary of all the downer economic news out there.
So the state’s chief tax collector took the time yesterday to e-mail supporters and tell them to take heart: Maryland’s wineries are thriving! (The comptroller’s duties include regulating the wine industry.)
He began his missive by laying out the bad news: “Jobs are hard to find. For those who have jobs, salaries are stagnant. Foreclosures are rampant, and decimated home values are hitting every corner of the state. As you saw last week, Maryland is facing severe budget challenges, and painful cuts will have to be made.”
“Things may be gloomy,” Franchot conceded, “but there are some bright spots that deserve our attention and support.”
While not immune to the national recession, Maryland’s wine industry is expanding, Franchot wrote. The number of wineries in the state has doubled in the past four years, and they now support 350 jobs that pay a total of nearly $11 million in annual salaries.
So imbibe, Franchot urged. He has.
“I've had the opportunity to visit vineyards throughout Maryland, and I've been impressed by both the value and the quality of their products,” he wrote. “If you're looking for a day-trip experience this summer that is both distinctive and affordable, visit a Maryland vineyard... and remember to buy Maryland wines when shopping at your local retailer.”
He concluded with one last public service announcement: “When you go on your wine tour, make sure to bring a designated driver and enjoy.”