Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot focused his remarks at a recent Greater Baltimore Committee Newsmaker Breakfast on the state’s fiscal health.
“We’re doing better recently than we were last year,” Franchot said. “Our economic recovery – and that is an odd phrase because we are talking about the recovery for eight years – continues to be sluggish and many employers are still struggling to make ends meet.
“Not surprisingly our fellow Marylanders are still having a tough time finding a job and our state continues to trail the nation in personal income, wage growth and total employment growth,” he said.
The comptroller addressed more than 50 members and guests of the GBC at the Newsmaker Breakfast series event on December 7 at The Center Club.
Peter Franchot was elected Maryland’s 33rd Comptroller in 2006 and sworn into office the following January. He was re-elected in 2010 and 2014.
Prior to his election to statewide office, he served for 20 years in the Maryland House of Delegates, representing the residents of Montgomery County. He served on the House Appropriations Committee and chaired the Transportation and the Environment Subcommittee.
Despite a slow economic recovery, the state’s economy has bright spots.
In fact, 10,000 new jobs were added in November, Franchot noted.
“To sustain positive momentum we need to continue to invest in high quality education, diversify the state economy,” he said. “We need to manage our spending more carefully and avoid policies that add to what is already an unsustainable debt load that the state is carrying. We need to adopt an economic strategy that welcomes private-sector money and rewards private-sector innovation.”
Stability, predictability and certainty for the next three years are imperative to the state’s continued economic recovery, Franchot said.
“We need to instill confidence about certainty and predictability,” he said.
To help put the state’s economy back on track state leaders should “be mindful about how we spend the taxpayer’s money,” Franchot said.
He encourages Marylanders to visit small, local businesses and shop small during the holiday season.
“Go down to these small, brick and mortar stores that are so crucial to our state’s economy and patronize them,” Franchot said. “Small businesses are the bedrock of our communities. We need to pay attention to these small businesses.”