Monday, September 10, 2012

Flawed Comparison

HoCo has always had a split personality when it comes to the big cities to the north and south of us. Some cheer the Ravens and the Orioles while others root for the Nats and the Redskins. When traveling outside of the area and asked where they’re from, some locos will say Baltimore while others will say DC.

As far as the Bureau of Labor Statistics is concerned however, HoCo is part of Baltimore. That means job growth at Fort Meade gets attributed to the Baltimore Metropolitan area as opposed to the Maryland suburbs of DC.

Yesterday, in his column in The Washington Post, Robert McCartney pointed out that job growth in “suburban Maryland is lagging far behind” that of Northern Virginia and Washington, DC.

“The contrast in jobs performance is dramatic. Here are the figures on how many full-time jobs each jurisdiction added in the 12 months ended in July, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics:

Northern Virginia: 32,200 jobs (a 2.4 percent increase);
District of Columbia: 10,000 (up 1.4 percent);
Suburban Maryland: 1,400 (up less than one-fifth of 1 percent).”

In the very next paragraph he points that employment increases in HoCo and AA counties aren't included into the suburban Maryland numbers.

“Those counties are gaining jobs as military intelligence facilities expand in and around Fort Meade, just 28 miles from the White House — but they’re counted as part of greater Baltimore. Northern Virginia includes counties such as Spotsylvania, more than 50 miles away.”

Now before you start railing about Maryland being overly dependent on federal spending remember that Northern Virginia and DC are just as dependent on those federal dollars we are, especially DC.

On the other hand, we could still stand to be a bit more business-friendly in the Free State, even if we are solid blue.

“The fact is, Northern Virginia’s advantage has been growing for years, and has been fostered by both Republicans and business-friendly Democrats.”

We just need more of those “business-friendly” Dems in Annapolis.

blog comments powered by Disqus