I wrote about “Potential For Significant Reductions In Howard County Revenue Noted In New APFO Fiscal Study” on Sunday after the press release on Friday…Howard County Government posted the article on Monday to their social media accounts….there was a briefing for reporters on Tuesday…then the Baltimore Sun posted the following article: “Study: Updated development ordinance could cost Howard $1 billion in revenues” this morning.
Some people have very strong opinions about this study…and I get it…but what struck me in all of it were the things not looked at in this study. Things like high school #13…things like the current school redistricting process…and how that will SIGNIFICANTLY change the financial numbers in this study.
This study looks at our current situation and says lets assume we leave it as it is today and then lets look 6 years from now…lets look 20 years from now…and here is what that will mean to the county in terms of development funding to the bottom line with the APFO law. I get it…that is the data we have right now…but the big thing to remember is that it will not stay that way and reporting should include that information….especially when we (numerous reporters) were told that information in a briefing about the study.
I am not saying anything in the study is wrong…I am not an expert on this topic. I can say with complete accuracy that the things not considered in the study will significantly change the numbers…and that should not be ignored. The study notes that this is an ever changing environment yearly…and that should be said by someone and the numbers noted in the report should not be be taken as the end all be all of what will happen going forward.
I am in total shock that the Baltimore Sun published their article and that was not mentioned. An entity that will get 100 times more reads than my local blog will…ignores that part of the story. Catchy headlines and framing a topic the way you want to is fun…but not really accurate if you actually look into it.
That is my rant for the morning…hope you all read / watch things in the news at this point with an eye on “is this real”. I do that with all reporting at this point. Even my stuff…I give you information and my opinion…and know that some things I write are my opinion on a topic. I hope and try to stay balanced at times…but sometimes my own personal opinions on a topic frame my articles (especially topics like a local bag tax). Upside for me is I am a blogger and not a news agency so I have that creative license to do just that…but should we be ok with news agencies doing that as well now? Just a question I have this morning.
Have a great week.
Article update: Hey look…I got a response on Twitter:
— erin b. logan (@erinblogan) August 7, 2019
Erin is correct…the article does have one whole sentence about the redistricting process and a quote from a current HoCoBOE member. No note on how that significantly changes the numbers in the study…but it is mentioned in the Time/Sun article.