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O'Malley Advises Frugality For MACo Conference

The Maryland Association of Counties summer conference in Ocean City next month could be a more sober affair than usual -- at least for Gov. Martin O'Malley's administration.

With both the state and Maryland counties facing hundreds of millions in budget cuts, O'Malley's chief of staff has advised the governor's office and his Cabinet members to send "essential staff only" to the annual beachfront confab.

And there's more. In letters made public today, O'Malley Chief of Staff Michael R. Enright encourages carpooling. And sharing hotel rooms. And he asks that staffers who slip out to the beach or golf course between conference sessions use comp time or take personal leave.

O'Malley (D) appears to be setting the tone for upcoming state budget cuts that will impact Maryland's counties. Aid to local governments accounts for about 40 percent of the state's general fund budget, making it an attractive target in times of fiscal shortfalls.

The legislature also is preparing to engage in "a thoughtful examination of the fiscal relationship between the state and local governments," according to a recent letter sent by Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller Jr. (D-Calvert) and House Speaker Michael E. Busch (D-Anne Arundel) to legislative staff.

The letter details the membership and agenda of a joint Senate-House work group that Miller and Busch announced in concept during the past legislative session.

By John Wagner  |  July 29, 2009; 3:30 PM ET
Categories:  John Wagner  
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The post reports on the existence of this letter. But does not show it to us. Whenever this blog references a document, it should be linked to or uploaded as a PDF. C'mon guys!

Posted by: --Secret-- | July 30, 2009 12:12 AM | Report abuse

Yes, primary sources would be nice. We may not have all gone to journalism school, but most of us can read.

Posted by: fonkyou | July 30, 2009 2:39 PM | Report abuse

You all are missing the point. If OMalley is so concerned about being "frugal" why dosn't he tell Maco to cancel this year's convention? After all, allegedly the whole state is in dire financial straights so why waste more tax dollars so a bunch of bureaucrats can sit around whining about the budget problems?

Posted by: VikingRider | July 30, 2009 7:42 PM | Report abuse

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