Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley recently tried to sell half of his office's fleet of vehicles in front of the State House, in an effort to address Maryland's coming budget deficit, The Associated Press
reports. O'Malley, a Democrat, says the sale is part of a larger effort to find an initial $200 million in savings, which will help address a projected $1.5 billion structural deficit next year. Staffers’ take-home car privileges were also ended. The governor's office has 24 cars assigned to it, and 12 are either being sold or sent to other agencies that need them, instead of buying new ones. For example, two unmarked police cars have been turned over to the Maryland Transit Administration Police. According to the AP
, the governor also has asked state agencies to look for vehicles that aren't needed. Maryland's government has about 9,000 cars in its fleet statewide. In fiscal 2007, it cost about $55 million to maintain them. The governor estimated the cut in vehicles in his office will save about $36,000.