Cumberland Times-News

Local News

April 24, 2013

Buy American bill awaits Gov. O’Malley’s signature

Measure receives support in both Senate and House

CUMBERLAND — A bill that would require many contractors and subcontractors on government projects to use American-created goods is awaiting Gov. Martin O’Malley’s signature.

The bill overwhelmingly passed the General Assembly by votes of 46-0 in the Senate and 132-2 in the House of Delegates.

The bill obliges governments to require the American-made purchases on contracts to build or maintain a public work or buy or manufacture machinery or equipment to be installed at a public work site.

A public safety exception is included in the bill that exempts emergency life safety and property safety items. Those items could include fire alarms and security systems.

The bill also allows a public body to make findings of fact to exempt some projects because of the comparative cost of American-produced items. A public body is defined as the state, a county, a city and school districts, according to the bill.

The bill may increase costs, but the exact amount is difficult to predict, according to a fiscal and policy note prepared by the Department of Legislative Services.

“State costs for public works projects may increase in proportion to the use of manufactured goods in state public works contracts; a reliable estimate is not feasible, in part because the bill includes several exceptions. ... Although total state expenditures for public works projects likely do not increase ... fewer projects may receive funding due to the increase in costs for individual projects,” the fiscal and policy note said.

The bill may also require additional state employees.

“At a minimum, enforcement requires procurement staff to identify, prior to issuing a bid request, all of the manufactured goods included in a public works contract that are subject to the bill’s requirement, and verify their origin during the performance of a contract,” according to the fiscal and policy note.

The document estimated about $150,000 required to fund three administrative positions, with most of that money going to salaries and benefits.

The bill should not affect small businesses much, according to the Department of Legislative Services.

“Any increased costs for American-made manufactured goods used in public works contracts are likely passed on to the public body. Small businesses may benefit, however, to the extent their products are used in public works projects,” the policy note said.

Contact Matthew Bieniek at

Text Only
Local News
  • Cemetery group’s efforts revive Oak Hill grounds Cemetery group’s efforts revive Oak Hill grounds

    After you drive Alexander and Furnace streets then navigate a couple of switchbacks on Cemetery Road, you’d figure there would be no more uphill.

    April 17, 2014 2 Photos

  • Proposed county budget holds most agencies flat

    After taking into account an income tax shortfall, Allegany County Finance Director Jason Bennett said he’ll propose a budget that holds most outside agencies to flat funding and funds the Board of Education at what county officials say are maintenence of effort levels for 2015.

    April 17, 2014

  • RYAN WOLF Wolf named 2014-15 Garrett Teacher of the Year

    Southern Garrett High School teacher Ryan Wolf has been named the 2014-15 Garrett County Teacher of the Year.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Rep. Delaney discusses congressional gridlock Rep. Delaney discusses congressional gridlock

    While giving a civics lesson at Frostburg State University on Thursday, U.S. Rep. John Delaney, congressman from Maryland’s sixth district, told students that the polarization in Congress is due primarily to redistricting and a poorly designed Congressional schedule.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Fourmile Ridge wind project approved, moves forward

    The Federal Aviation Administration has approved the Fourmile Ridge wind project in eastern Garrett County and site preparation started April 7, according to Frank Maisano, a wind industry spokesman. The current notice listed on the FAA website for the project is for a small change in turbine location.

    April 17, 2014

  • Oakland back to normal after toppled tanker closes business district

    The town of Oakland returned to normal activities Thursday, one day after a tanker full of liquid propane overturned in the heart of the business district.
    Shortly after 8 p.m. Wednesday the toppled tanker was removed and its 10,000-gallon load transferred to another tanker.

    April 17, 2014

  • Students back Southern Middle School renovation

    Students from both Southern and Northern middle schools presented a list of reasons why Southern Middle needs to be renovated during the Garrett County Commission meeting Tuesday.

    April 17, 2014

  • Trial run Trial run

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • 72nd anniversary of Doolittle Raid on Tokyo 72nd anniversary of Doolittle Raid on Tokyo

    Friday, April 18, has another special meaning for me besides Good Friday.
    April 18, 1942, proved to be a pivotal day for American morale, following the deadly air attack and destruction conceived and executed by Japanese Adm. Isoroku Yamamoto.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Lara Courrier seeks re-appointment to Mineral school board

    I, Lara Courrier, am seeking re-election to the Mineral County Board of Education to continue the work I’ve done the last four years. Having served as a school counselor at the Burlington Center School and the Chick Buckbee Juvenile Center for nearly six years, as well as approximately 20 years total working with children, I have insight into the needs of kids and the importance of the actions of the school board. Having three sons and several nieces and nephews in Mineral County schools, I have an added incentive to continue to work hard to ensure the efficient running of our school system. 

    April 17, 2014

Must Read
News related video