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November 18, 2010

MD holds ranking in new New Economy survey

Gov. Martin O'Malley amassed another feather in his economic cap today when the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation rated Maryland third in the country for "moving the country toward an innovation economy."

Ranking ahead of us are Massachusetts and Washington state. Maryland took the same place when the study was last published two years ago and was bested by the same two states.

The governor loves these types of studies, and sees them as evidence that he's successfully steering the state toward what he alternatively calls a "knowledge economy" or an "innovation economy." The idea is to woo high-tech, bio-tech and green energy firms with the belief that the captains of these industries value a highly educated workforce and decent infrastructure over cut rate taxes.

In the upcoming legislative session O'Malley will do something else the folks at Kauffman will probably like: introduce legislation that would establish a $100 million venture capital fund that the state -- or a non-profit -- would invest in new economy firms. The money would come from insurance companies forward paying their taxes, an idea that is already stirring ire from some in the House GOP caucus.

During the campaign, former Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. laid out a different economic vision -- one that involved chopping the state's sales tax and looking for ways to reduce the corporate income tax. O'Malley repeatably pointed out that many states with the lowest tax rates are also fairing poorly during the recession. 

Ehrlich had one other cheaper idea: Replace the heads of what he called "broken" state agencies. He would have re-made the Maryland Department of the Environment (developers say it takes forever to get a permit) and the state's Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation (which served up a rare mini-scandal over the summer when staffers posted a downbeat economic narrative at odds with the governor's sunnier talking points.) Ehrlich lost by more than 13 percentage points.
Posted by Annie Linskey at 3:21 PM | | Comments (3)
Categories: jobs, jobs, jobs
        

Comments

Who cares what Ehrlich said? Get over him.

O'Malley is doing a fine job. He is all about improvements.

People designed a number of effective specifics generally there. Used to do a look intended for within the problem and discovered a lot of folks may permission in your page.

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Annie Linskey covers state politics and government for The Baltimore Sun. Previously, as a City Hall reporter, she wrote about the corruption trial of Mayor Sheila Dixon and kept a close eye on city spending. Originally from Connecticut, Annie has also lived in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, where she reported on war crimes tribunals and landmines. She lives in Canton.

John Fritze has covered politics and government at the local, state and federal levels for more than a decade and is now The Baltimore Sun’s Washington correspondent. He previously wrote about Congress for USA TODAY, where he led coverage of the health care overhaul debate and the 2010 election. A native of Albany, N.Y., he currently lives in Montgomery County.

Julie Scharper covers City Hall and Baltimore politics. A native of Baltimore County, she graduated from The Johns Hopkins University in 2001 and spent two years teaching in Honduras before joining The Baltimore Sun. She has followed the Amish community of Nickel Mines, Pa., in the year after a schoolhouse massacre, reported on courts and crime in Anne Arundel County, and chronicled the unique personalities and places of Baltimore City and its surrounding counties.
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