State Roundup, November 3, 2017

STATE TO CONSIDER TUNNEL EXPANSION SANS CSX: Maryland’s state and federal lawmakers pledged Thursday to explore how to move forward with a planned expansion of the Howard Street Tunnel under downtown Baltimore, after CSX Transportation, the railroad that owns it, said it could not justify paying for its share of the $425 million project, Colin Campbell of the Sun reports. “We’re going to go back to the drawing board,” Gov. Larry Hogan said. “It’s a worthwhile project and we’ll be pursuing it from every direction.”

HOGAN PLAN REBUKED OVER METRO PUSH: A last-minute maneuver to push the Metro board to support Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan’s funding proposal for the transit agency drew sharp rebukes Thursday, as representatives from the District and Virginia condemned the gesture as “political theater.” Martine Powers and Robert McCartney of the Post report that just days after Metro General Manager Paul J. Wiedefeld released his proposed budget for the coming fiscal year — including a request for an additional $136 million to pay for capital projects — the flare-up highlighted the lack of consensus about how the District, Maryland and Virginia should come up with the money.

HOGAN TOUTS COMPUTER TRAINING: Gov. Larry Hogan plans to ask state lawmakers to set standards for computer science training in public schools, one of several steps he says will help create a more tech-savvy workforce in Maryland, reports Pamela Wood for the Sun.

  • Bryan Sears of the Daily Record quotes Hogan as saying: “In this rapidly evolving job landscape, states that have access to a highly trained workforce will have a major advantage. Maryland simply must continue to lead the way, and closing this skills gap begins with a focus on education. We must spark the interest of students — particularly girls — beginning at an even younger age, and we must inspire high school and college students to pursue careers in computer science.”