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Base Realignment & Closure
Higher Education in Maryland

March 2008 Press Release




Bi-Weekly BRAC Activity Report for Subcabinet*


Date: February 25-March 7, 2008

Department/Agency:  Maryland Higher Education Commission



Meetings Attended:
February 25, 2008: Higher Education Secretary James E. Lyons, Sr., met with Lt. Governor Anthony Brown to discuss upcoming Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) legislation.

February 26, 2008: Higher Education Secretary James E. Lyons, Sr., Assistant Secretary Andrea Mansfield, Grants Director Paula Fitzwater and Director of Government Affairs Dr. Gareth Murray attended the hearing on HB 704 in the House Appropriations Committee with Secretary Lyons testifying in support of the bill. House Bill 704 authorizes moneys from the Higher Education Investment Fund to be used for initiatives to address higher education needs related to the Base Realignment and Closure process. House Bill 704 passed out of Appropriations on March 4.

February 26, 2008: The Maryland Higher Education Commission (MHEC) Director of Communications Christopher Falkenhagen testified with bill sponsor Senator Rob Garagiola, Senate chair of the General Assembly’s Veterans Caucus, in support of extending the Veterans of the Afghanistan and Iraq Conflicts Scholarship program – which is administered by MHEC – to 2016 because of the ongoing conflict. This is a very popular program and was pushed very vigorously by then-Delegate and now Lt. Governor Anthony Brown. The extension of this scholarship program – if passed as expected – will benefit the military and civilian personnel who will be moving into Maryland because of BRAC.

Presentations Given:
February 22-March 6, 2008: Chief of Staff Dr. Kathleen Walton, Director -- Policy Analysis and Research Dr. Michael Keller, assistant Attorney General Cathy Shultz and Grants Coordinator Paula Fitzwater have spent this time frame extensively shoring up the legal and necessary responsibilities to put into the RFP for MHEC’s BRAC coordinator.

February 26, 2008: Secretary Lyons initiated a conference call with Karen Holt, BRAC coordinator for Harford County to see how MHEC could best work with the county to help them secure funding for a Higher Education Center similar to the very successful higher education center near the gates of the Patuxent River Naval Air Station located in St. Mary’s County.

February 29, 2008:
GEAR-UP/CPIP Coordinator Takeia Bradley met with MSDE’s GEAR-UP coordinator to discuss the potential of incorporating activities for the GEAR UP cohort on the importance of the impact of their student behavior on their ability to obtain a security clearance and information on the process of applying for a security clearance.

March 2, 2008: Dr. Michael Keller issued an RFP to obtain a consultant to conduct a comprehensive review of the need for higher education in Maryland, Northern Virginia, Delaware and Washington, D.C. as a result of the pending closure of Ft. Monmouth, NJ.

March 3, 2008: Secretary Lyons visited DHR headquarters in Crownsville to present the Maryland Military Installation with higher education issues in regards to BRAC.

Media Interaction: February 27, 2008: Communications Director Christopher Falkenhagen wrote a press release to inform incoming BRAC personnel – as well as usual contacts -- about the significance of extending the Veterans of the Afghanistan and Iraq Conflict Scholarship extension bill which is administered by MHEC.

Two Week Look Ahead at Significant Pending Events: MHEC staff is extensively preparing for a key meeting with officials from Ft. Monmouth, NJ, on March 10 at MHEC headquarters.

*Submit to DBED Office of Military and Federal Affairs no later than 3pm on every other Thursday to lbell@choosemaryland.org, mhayes@choosemaryland.org, and jwoepke@choosemaryland.org


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