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O'Malley Warns of More Budget Cuts, Tax Increases

Pipkin: Governor "spells out a world where the pie’s not big enough and the revenue is not big enough."

Gov. Martin O’Malley warned county leaders to be ready for more state budget cuts and possibly tax increases when the General Assembly meets in January.

“We will all have to be open to more cuts, and at the same time—to protect our children’s future—we must be open to new revenues,” O’Malley said Saturday in a nearly 25 minute speech to county leaders at the Maryland Association of Counties conference in Ocean City.

"One year I hope to be able to come before you and proclaim a return to full employment, a restoration of all highway user dollars and other state grants," O'Malley said. "One year I hope to come here and proclaim the existence of a giant, deficit-slaying surplus. But that year isn't this year."

The governor met with county leaders prior to the speech but apparently offered no more insights into the potential new revenue streams he said are needed than were in his speech.

“The bottom line is there are so many uncertainties that my sense is it’s difficult for the governor to give too many specifics about the upcoming budget and where we’re headed without knowing what’s happening in Washington,” said Ken Ulman, Howard County executive and MACo president.

Increases to the sales and gas tax are just two thought to be on the table. Some legislators had been predicting those increases could come up when the General Assembly returns to Annapolis in October to redraw the state’s eight congressional districts.

The governor offered no specifics about new or increased taxes in his speech. He declined to provide specifics afterwards to reporters before he headed to the beach.

Both O’Malley and House Speaker Michael Busch both said that, barring a dramatic change at the federal level, any discussion on taxes would not take place until the 2012 session which begins in January.

“It’s a better opportunity to discuss the overall vision and direction of the state during the period when you’re dealing with the budget of the state of Maryland, which is during the 90 day session,” said Busch, an Anne Arundel County Democrat. “Unless there’s some kind of catastrophe that comes about because of the federal government, I think we’re better off waiting for the 90-day session.”

O'Malley, during his speech, highlighted what he said was the state's interdependence on ongoing federal issues including a new so-called super committee charged with finding more than $1 trillion in cuts to the federal budget. Those cuts are not likely to be known until late December— weeks before O’Malley would be expected to deliver his budget to state legislators.

“Any further help from Washington is doubtful, and more serious hurt to all state economies -- from the narrow-minded faction of jobs-obstructionist in Congress -- is very likely,” O’Malley said. “We must be willing to adapt; ready to meet what may come from our Congress by December with the balanced approach necessary to move our state forward.”

O’Malley called Republicans in Congress “economic saboteurs.”

At least one leading state Republican legislator said he was unimpressed with O’Malley’s speech.

Sen. E.J Pipkin, an Eastern Shore Republican, called O’Malley’s speech “way out of balance and way out of touch.”

O’Malley “spells out a world where the pie’s not big enough and the revenue is not big enough,” Pipkin said. “I think that’s the wrong view.”

“I don’t think that Maryland, by any objective benchmark, is under-taxed,” said Sen. E.J. Pipkin, an Eastern Shore Republican. “People aren’t coming up to me and saying they want to be taxed more.”

“This is a governor talks about more taxes and more spending and it’s time to stop digging the hole,” Pipkin said.

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Bart August 22, 2011 at 01:45 AM
How right you are, Cassandra! The U. S. is still far and away the richest, most powerful nation in the world. Even the recent debt ceiling "panic" has little to do with the reality of the US's ability to pay its debts, and everything to do with the parties playing politics. Even the explanation S & P gave for the recent downgrade had everything to do with our government's inability to come to an agreement when EVERYTHING is at stake. It's all about politics now. How very sad. The US used to stand for something. Now it's all about how we can't do things.
Bart August 22, 2011 at 01:49 AM
The burden runs downhill all the way to the people who can least afford it: the poor, the elderly and the disabled. All while the billionaires pay less, as a percentage of their income than the average middle income family. This isn't right.
Tim August 22, 2011 at 03:31 AM
Bart: I agree. Then the Billionaires fabricate jedi-mind trick statistics saying how 45-50% of Americans don't pay federal tax, when truth is, it's because they don't earn enough money to do so!
Butch Jansen August 22, 2011 at 03:31 AM
TEA party = Taxed Enough Already! Like most average citizens and families, the government (Federal/State/Local) need to live/operate within their means and not on unlimited credit spending at the burden of the 50% whom do pay their taxes....I'm a Republican and I applaud the Tea Party for taking a stand when the overwhelming majority of liberal Democrats and some of my own Republicans won't. If we average "Joe American's" have to stay within our budget, so does Annapolis and Washington.
Nick August 22, 2011 at 05:34 AM
I've worked on many Whiting and Turner jobs and I can assure with 100% certainty that although they do not directly employ illegals they do employ subcontractors that almost exclusively employ illegals. Frankly, since they are the ones in control of the money I don't really see the difference.
Buzz Beeler August 22, 2011 at 06:48 AM
And Bart who is in power now? The other day you were all for the leadership in the county, remember? Why don't you ride over to Breentwood Ave. and the Bread and Cheese Creek and tell them what a wonderful job John is doing. I'm sure they would receive you with open arms. After all the problem has only been going on for at least 15 years and nothing has been done. They can't find the time or money to fix a flooding problem that has festered for over a decade, but they can pay out million dollar pensions and travel to OC. Name one project to come out of that junket? Do you know what the percentage of the GDP is to the debt, or how about the interest on the debt. What about the trade deficit and its impact on jobs? Next you can explain the financial crisis in Europe and how that will impact us? You are right on one thing though, it is all about politics and not about leadership. Ask Robert Armstrong to help you, the one who lies constantly about his military career, three college degrees and 6 languages he speaks. Comparing someone to a Nazi without any evidence is just about as crass as one can get. His quote of: "Whatever happened to that Teabagger that ran for office in Ohio thAt like to dress up as a Nazi?". I can't quite make out that word "thAT." Must be part of his thesis paper on being a juvenile delinquent.
Tom Barnes August 22, 2011 at 09:58 AM
The whole "Owemalley" name calling thing?... It's old and it's EXTREMELY juvenile. These are the people we allow to vote? Frankly, I don't want 2 year old personalities voting on anything in this country. They continuiously prove that they lack any sense of maturity whatsoever.
Bart August 22, 2011 at 11:35 AM
To save everybody the pain of Beeler going off the rails again, I will not respond to his rambling diatribe. But I must confess, I DID hear Michael Steele, late of the leadership post of the Republcan Party, state that we should be sending troops to Central Africa to aid with the famine. Yeah, that's just what we need: ANOTHER war. And it would be a war, since the group El Shabab is keeping all foreign aid out of the area.
Robert Armstrong August 22, 2011 at 01:04 PM
Bueller, maybe you can Goggle (sic) "Rich Iott" the Tea Party candidate and "Young Gun" from Ohio. I gave you the link but obviously the old Commodore must be having trouble opening it.
Robert Armstrong August 22, 2011 at 01:19 PM
You can't say anything about the subject with 100% certainty. Have you looked at their employment papers?
Buzz Beeler August 22, 2011 at 03:42 PM
You start acting like an adult and I'll look at the link. How am I supposed to know who you're are talking to? You have a habit of referring to others using the R word and yet you constantly slur people. What site is "Goggle."? (sic) I don't have trouble reading links, it's just your writing I can't understand. If you meant to say Google then why not use your delete key and correct it? That way you won't have to use the term (sic) as it applies to your mistake. You want everyone to accept your links as truth, yet when someone uses one like Fox or You Tube, you pan it as being racist. What is even stranger, you use both of them yourself. I would expect something a little more sophisticated from a person who claims to hold three college degrees and speak 6 languages. By the way you made the statement you belong to a country club and observe politicans there. What club do you have a membership with?
Neil B August 22, 2011 at 04:03 PM
It is a felony too!
Buzz Beeler August 22, 2011 at 04:14 PM
Bart, generally the way this blog works is that someone, (meaning you) makes a comment in the first person, and then others respond in kind. You made the following comment: "It's all about politics now. How very sad. The US used to stand for something.". Now, as I said the way this works is after you have your say, others are entitled to theirs, unless you want take editorial control of the site and your voice is the only one heard. I asked some very adult and pointed questions regarding your comment requiring an answer that went beyond the word "tirade." In retrospect that would require some effort and research and I should have known better to ask such questions.
Lisa August 22, 2011 at 04:22 PM
Please like he is going to answer your questions. Who cares what he says I rather ignore him then give him any of my time. You can't have a grown up conversation with him because he likes to have temper tantrums he loses all creditability in my opinion
Bart August 22, 2011 at 04:38 PM
I do not DEMAND that someone give me an answer. I have a right to my opinion, as you do. The topic is O'Malley calling for budget cuts and tax increases. That is the topic of just about every state in the union and the Federal Government. And, last I checked, this wasn't a Blog, the Patch asks for comments. I am making comments. End of story.
Tim August 22, 2011 at 05:07 PM
Butch: I simply don't agree. If you think our taxes are bad, you should look around the world. Americans have it easy. All I'm saying is, you tea party people need to remember all this "living within your means" bluster when a couple years from now you don't get the same services and local funding from our government as we used to. Whether its highway upkeep, parks/rec funding, school upkeep, snow cleanup funding, I could go on and on. There's a balancing point between cuts and tax hikes, and it's considerably more on the side of cuts then hikes. Still, without appropriate tax hikes and tax reform (at both the state and national level) this country will continue to degrade both socially and economically. History has proven this out.
Nick August 22, 2011 at 08:37 PM
Yes I can Robert. You have no idea what position I hold or what I do for a living and when I say that I am 100% certain, that is exactly what I mean.
Robert Armstrong August 22, 2011 at 08:40 PM
Then if you are 100% sure they are "illegal" then why don't you call ICE? You are full of Dookie.
Nick August 22, 2011 at 08:52 PM
Tim, the amount of waste that in our federal government is deplorable. I find it hard to understand why we need to raise taxes again when so much money is simply thrown away. Perhaps every federal agency should be subjected to an independent audit to find more revenues before we propose more tax increases. http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/sen-tom-coburn-criticizes-wasteful-government-programs-2010/story?id=12437190 Why should taxpayers continue to be forced to throw money at these kinds of programs. Though I generally don't agree with totalitarian statements like the tea party stance of no taxes period, I am glad that they exist to help to counteract some of the wanton spending engaged upon by our congressional leaders and the current administration. I think that the implementation of a national sales tax on all purchases not necessary to survival in lieu of income tax would be a way to solve alot of this countries problems. Who cares if we have illegal immigrants if they have to pay the same taxes as everyone else. And the super rich wouldn't be able to get around paying taxes because they have to spend their money on something. It's just a thought but our current system obviously doesn't work and I think that if everyone were forced to pay their fair share the overall burden on the middle class would be drastically reduced.
Ed Jr. August 22, 2011 at 10:05 PM
Tim, Nick summed it up nicely. It is really scary how some lefties just don't get it. Unfortunately we are getting to a point in American Society where there are more receivers than payers. Once that point is reached, the receivers will continue to vote themselves ever bigger slices of a pie that someone else has baked. Americans are generous, but there is no need to give more to bloated local, state, and federal governments until they show true reform in how they spend it.
Ed Jr. August 22, 2011 at 10:08 PM
Robert Armstrong, is that your real name? You are a real tool. Are you an operative for Rachael Madcow?
Tim August 23, 2011 at 01:31 AM
Nick, I appreciate Tom Coburn's relatively impartial budget mindset. I agree with the bulk of your argument. I am anti-Tea party because of their staunch refusal to accept anything even resembling tax reform. This country needs both tax reform AND spending reform. I agree that the Tea party has done some good - I've simply said they are going too far now. I would love to see independent auditing of all government spending (federal, state, county). I am all for trimming true waste. I just consider the mega wealthy only paying 15% (give or take) taxes on investments and hedge funds when they SHOULD be paying the max rate of 35% to be waste as well, in it's own way. Because like bad spending, it's money the government SHOULD have. Same goes for other tax loopholes, and all the subsidies that are completely unnecessary. Same goes with all of these mega corporations not paying anywhere near the "35% corporate tax rate". Some subsidies have merit, but today many don't. I just can't get into the Republican mindset of today that is all or nothing. No taxes, no tax reform, all cuts. Conveniently benefits the rich.
Carole Miller August 23, 2011 at 01:37 AM
Omally Obama ..same people . Cant stand either one . Tax and spend . I hate Maryland ,cant leave, but hate it.
rick j August 23, 2011 at 11:53 AM
if you just knew where the money is going.Cannot be going to roads.Majority of roads in the East Baltimore area are shock busters.Schools?Read that only 27% graduate from school in Baltimore City.Cannot be going for more police to stop the ever rasing crime.Cannot be going to create jobs.Unemployment rate is going up.So where does the money go.That is the problem.No accountability.Only so many eggs can come from the golden goose before she gives up too.But they do not care.
Neil B August 23, 2011 at 12:08 PM
I agree. How can they justify needing more money when everything is suck a mess.
Butch Jansen August 24, 2011 at 07:17 PM
"You cannot help the poor by destroying the rich. You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong. You cannot bring about prosperity by discouraging thrift. You cannot lift the wage earner up by pulling the wage payer down. You cannot further the brotherhood of man by inciting class hatred. You cannot build character and courage by taking away people's initiative and independence. You cannot help people permanently by doing for them, what they could and should do for themselves." - Abraham Lincoln
Butch Jansen August 24, 2011 at 07:22 PM
Infrastructure improvements were suppose to have been a big part of the first Obama stimulus plan which he lauded there would be "plenty of jobs created from these shovel ready projects." Oh, but wait, he just recently ADMITTED that the projects weren't in fact "shovel ready as he had thought." So where did all that stimulus money then go? Hmmmmm!!!!!!!!
Robert Armstrong August 24, 2011 at 07:39 PM
The DOE used the money to hire a almost a hundred thousand people.
Tom Barnes August 24, 2011 at 07:41 PM
That's all godo and fine, Butch, but there is a failed logic in America. To date, that logic has been "if we give the wealthy all kinds of breaks then they will create jobs." So I ask: 'WHERE ARE THOSE JOBS?' The weathly should NOT have loopholes or tax breaks that are not given to the middle class and the poor. This is WHY there was a revolution in the 1917 in Russia. Do we need that again but this time on our shores? Think about it.
Tim August 24, 2011 at 09:02 PM
Trickle Down Economics has been proven time and again, over the past 3 decades, to be an irrelevant and thus failure of an economic policy. It hasn't made the economy inherently worse over time, but it hasn't improved economic growth (defined by GDP) either. It's effects are limited solely to benefitting the rich. Serriously, look no further then last year. Repubc demanded President Obama extend the BTC's for the wealthy. They claimed "It'll create jobs!". So the President gives in. Job creation? LOL. Nowhere to be found. Then they simply turn around and blame the President for spending too much.

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