Howard County Executive Allan Kittleman received the report of the transition team he appointed to evaluate county government. Kittleman thanked the chair, Michael Davis, the 11 committee chairs and the 133 citizens from across the community who worked tirelessly during the last several months to compile the report.
The report analyzed each department of county government and identified some overarching issues. One such issue, Davis said, is that “openness and transparency depend on effective communication, and updating the county’s web site will play a critical role in achieving this goal.”
Another important issue, he said, is that “prudent budget management would require that future purchases of real estate should be accompanied with fiscal notes so that the full cost of any such purchase can be analyzed.” The report pointed to the recent acquisition of the Columbia Flier building that was purchased for $2.8 million, but will cost a total of $10,140,000 to bring online.
New initiatives that were recommended include holding a symposium on population health, incorporating regional public transportation options as a key to future economic development, and creating a task force to review and make recommendations regarding the creation of a Department of Aging.
The report also calls for county-wide approaches to housing and technology, and points to the need to recognize that the county workforce is aging so that succession plans may need to be developed to retain some of the institutional knowledge that could be lost by retirements. Davis added that “instituting a robust internship program throughout county government should be considered so that the county can have access to the energy and perspectives of our younger citizens.”
The full report may be reviewed at www.howardcountymd.gov/TransitionTeamReport.pdf.