You’ll have to pardon Comptroller Peter V.R. Franchot for feeling a little personal vindication.
After eight years on the Board of Public Works seemingly tilting at procurement windmills, the state’s top elected Democrat said he’s taking some personal satisfaction from a new Republican governor who seems to be of a like mind when it comes to watching how state dollars are spent.
“My view is it’s a whole new day on the Board of Public Works and the ultimate beneficiaries will be the taxpayers of Maryland,” Franchot said following just his second board meeting with Gov. Larry Hogan.
Hogan, Franchot and Treasurer Nancy K. Kopp Wednesday voted to defer six spending requests totaling nearly $50 million over questions about poorly explained cost increases or bidding processes.
At the end of the meeting, Hogan declared there to be “a new sheriff in town.”
“He’s clearly the new sheriff in town,” Franchot said. “I thought (Wednesday) was a big sea change from what it has been the last eight years that I’ve been on the board.”
During that time before Hogan, Franchot was typically the lone voice complaining about procurement processes he said did not yield the best quality or lowest costs for taxpayers. It was a complaint that frequently fell on deaf ears under Democratic Gov. Martin J. O’Malley.
“For the last eight years I was on the wrong side of 2 to 1 votes and if I in the future I am going to be on the right side of 2 to 1 votes, it will be personally satisfying,” Franchot said.