Maryland’s Transportation Budget is in Trouble

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Maryland transportation officials this week fielded questions from state lawmakers about the $3.3 billion budget shortfall they face in funding their six-year plan. Though the administration of Governor Moore avoided drastic cuts for the coming fiscal year, they are looking at shortfalls in the following years, prompting lawmakers and officials to search for new revenue streams to fund transportation. Contributing to the budget squeeze is a trend of higher costs and declining gas tax revenues, which has traditionally funded such matters. Transportation Secretary Paul Wiedefeld, Maryland Transit Administrator Holly Arnold and State Highway Administrator William Pines appeared at a House of Delegates appropriations subcommittee hearing on Monday to discuss their budgets for the coming year.

Ways the shortfall could shake out: Some of the biggest takeaways from Monday’s hearing are the potential impacts of the state’s transportation shortfall. Of these are potential cuts to Baltimore transit services, a growing $2 billion backlog of MTA rehab work, as well as further delays to the Purple Line. As the Transportation Trust Fund dwindles, sustainable funding solutions will be discussed and recommended by the Maryland Commission on Transportation Revenue and Infrastructure Needs. The Commission’s final report is due by Jan. 1, 2025.

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