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Doug Barry

Historian, Political Philosopher, Veteran


Over the last eight years, there has been a running theme in the General Assembly and the Governor's office - 'Where can we get more revenue?' There have been special sessions to add gambling sites and raise taxes. In the 2013 general session, raising taxes was the primary focus. The sales tax has been raised. The gas tax has been raised. There have been no new tax proposals in 2014. It's a common political strategy to raise taxes before the election year. They are hoping voters will forget what they did in previous years.

There are consequences for choosing taxes over government efficiency. Baltimore is no longer a prime location for national corporate headquarters. Maryland has become more and more dependent on Federal employment (which also meant the State was hit a lot harder than most other states by the shutdown of the Federal government). Our ability to compete with other states for new businesses and industries has been compromised.


  • Require the government in Maryland to live within its means
  • Analyze the actual cost of proposed legislation to determine if it should be enacted
  • Analyze all government departments to determine how they can run more efficiently
  • Restructure the State's taxes to incentivize the creation of new businesses
  • Stop the creation of new
    or higher taxes

We have an opportunity to restructure our entire tax system in Maryland over the next four years in a way that will bring jobs into the State and rebuild communities that have deteriorated over the last eight years. The handful of legislators that have pushed for tax cuts are just trying any cut they can put through. More thought must be put into what the best way is to return tax revenue back to our residents.

Our first priority is to lure businesses and industries into the State. This does not have to cost Maryland very much, because more employment generates more revenue, and reduces expenditures in social services. Frequently, tax breaks for specific businesses cost the State nothing. Politicians and news commentators that oppose such tax breaks portray the entire tax break as a loss. They are wrong. If a business doesn't open or relocate here, we don't get that revenue anyway, so the tax break is not costing us anything. Additionally, we gain revenue from the individual taxes paid by each employee. We need to examine these case by case, or industry by industry, to make sure that we are not hurting existing businesses by giving someone else an unfair advantage, but we can offset this by sharing the increased individual tax revenue with existing businesses, and we can accomplish that by giving tax cuts or rebates to existing businesses.