Donald Fry: Gauging the value of the Exelon-Constellation deal

By Donald C. Fry The planned Exelon-Constellation merger, announced on April 28, prompted the anticipated media reporting and commentary under headlines proclaiming the “loss” of “Baltimore’s last Fortune 500 company.” Being a business advocate, I feel compelled to offer a few observations on this proposed merger and how to view its economic impact. First, as an aside, calling Constellation the city’s “last” Fortune 500 company hints an implied cynicism about … Continue reading

GBC’s Fry: Renewable energy development is policy-driven and incentive-sensitive

Don Fry Commentary on WYPR Last month I reported that solar power is the early alternative-energy leader as Maryland works to meet its goal that 20 percent of energy used here be from renewable sources by 2022. Wide availability of well-developed solar equipment, coupled with government incentives, is what makes solar energy the front runner. Here’s a brief update on three other developing alternative-energy sources and challenges they face. Wind … Continue reading

Donald Fry: Wind power has potential in Maryland, but solar emerges as early renewable option

By Donald Fry The prospect of Maryland developing offshore wind power received media attention this week when the Obama administration approved the nation’s first offshore wind farm near Cape Cod in Massachusetts. While this lifted the spirits of wind-power advocates in our state who are seeking development of a wind farm offshore from Ocean City, the reality is that a significant renewable energy impact from Maryland offshore facilities remains far … Continue reading

GBC-supported tax credits gain passage in 2010 Assembly session

In a 2010 General Assembly session punctuated by more fiscal shuffling to close yet another budget deficit, lawmakers managed to pass a number of bills, including several key tax credits, that could favorably impact the state’s business competitiveness. GBC-supported measures that passed the General Assembly included bills to continue and broaden an incentive program for historic building rehabilitation, to fund tax credits for bioscience investment, to extend tax credits for … Continue reading

GBC’s Fry: Focus on consumer choice, not electricity re-regulation

Don Fry commentary on WYPR Two years after de-regulation for most Maryland residential customers, the call for a return to electricity price regulation lingers in Annapolis. Last year, a re-regulation bill passed the state’s Senate but died in a House committee and prospects for such legislation are no better this year. But the Governor and some lawmakers continue to advocate for more, not less, government control over electricity pricing. A … Continue reading

GBC’s Fry: Good news/bad news from Constellation-EDF and Black and Decker

Don Fry Commentary on WYPR Recently there was good news and bad news from two Maryland Fortune 500 companies. First, Maryland’s business climate was strengthened by the November 6 announcement that Constellation Energy and the EDF Group had completed their $4.5 billion joint venture following the Public Service Commission’s approval of the transaction. The deal paves the way for building a third nuclear facility at Calvert Cliffs that would significantly … Continue reading

Pipkin, Garagiola spar over re-regulation at GBC Energy Symposium

Two Maryland lawmakers who are among the most vocal in Annapolis on energy policy presented opposing views on the issue of whether to re-regulate electricity rates at the Greater Baltimore Committee’s December 9 Energy Symposium. Senator E.J. Pipkin said his support for re-regulation relates to his contention that retail customers in Maryland face a “monopoly situation” for electricity supply, he told a symposium audience of more than 75 GBC members … Continue reading

Experts to GBC: Recession is dissipating, ‘green’ business opportunities emerge

A general consensus that the recession is beginning to dissipate is prompting optimism in the financial community tempered by concerns over a continuing high rate of joblessness, a still-sluggish housing market, and a wary investing public that has less confidence in financial institutions. Meanwhile, the emergence of a strong global focus on energy conservation and carbon reduction will generate significant demand for “green” products and services and create opportunities that … Continue reading

GBC’s Donald Fry to Maryland Public Service Commission: Constellation-EDF deal has ‘clear benefits’

Greater Baltimore Committee president and CEO Donald C. Fry urged the Maryland Public Service Commission to make a decision regarding the pending Constellation-EDF deal that allows the state to realize an “unprecedented opportunity to significantly enhance its economy.” Fry testified at the PSC’s September 17 public hearing at the War Memorial Building in Baltimore. He cited what the GBC sees as “clear benefits” to BGE customers and to the state … Continue reading