PPPs still loom large for Maryland

Lieutenant governor Anthony Brown (pictured) again stressed the importance enabling PPP legislation would have on infrastructure. The state Senate in April signed a PPP bill into law.

Piecing together enabling public-private partnership (PPP) legislation in Maryland is vital to building and restoring infrastructure statewide, a government official said.

Lieutenant governor Anthony Brown in a speech to the Maryland general assembly reaffirmed his belief that the Old Line State should create PPP “framework,” and go on to support 6 percent to 10 percent of its infrastructure via the private sector.

In promoting pro-PPP legislation, Brown, head of a committee established in 2010 to explore private investment in public infrastructure, was reiterating a previously stated opinion.

In January, Brown voiced a similar assessment to Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley. Democrat O’Malley is responsible for creating a joint legislative and executive PPP task force.

The 6-to-10 percent budget allocation would amount to between $205 million and $315 million. Maryland has a $3.1 billion annual budget.

Brown in his speech cited Florida, Virginia and Puerto Rico, for their successful use of the private sector for transportation infrastructure.

He went on to point out Maryland in 2010 embarked on its own fruitful PPP: the Seagirt Marine Terminal project in Baltimore—named Infrastructure Investor’s “North America Infrastructure Deal of the Year”.

The state attempted its second-ever PPP—to redevelop its aging travel center on the John F. Kennedy Memorial Highway—in an agreement with Areas USA.

A special legislative session resulted in the state Senate in April passing a bill to enable PPP law.

However, a legal framework for implementing a PPP has not been mapped out.