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Governor Larry Hogan delivers the State of the State address in the House of Delegates chamber at the state house in Annapolis.
Governor Larry Hogan delivers the State of the State address in the House of Delegates chamber at the state house in Annapolis. (Amy Davis / The Baltimore Sun)

During his state-of-the-state speech, Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan dropped the biggest superlatives in the dictionary when touting his efforts to provide traffic relief to state drivers.

"We began construction of the Purple Line, the largest public-private transit project in the nation," the Republican governor said.

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The "largest" public-private partnership — or P3 — in the nation related to public transit?

He didn't stop there.

"We proposed the largest P3 traffic relief project in the world because Marylanders are sick and tired of spending countless hours of their lives sitting in bumper-to-bumper traffic," he said.

The largest in the world?

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan said in his State of the State address that he's cut taxes, but experts say the claim stretches the meaning of a tax break. For instance, businesses and residents saved $240 million because of a U.S. Supreme Court ruling. Other cuts came from Democratic bills Hogan signed.

Those are some big claims. (Maybe he plans to challenge President Donald Trump, who’s no stranger to superlatives.)

To back him up on the international claim, Hogan's staff pointed to the December 2018 issue of Public Works Financing newsletter, "the Journal of Record for public-private partnerships."

The largest project on the list for the $122 billion transportation P3 market was estimated to cost $7.3 billion. Maryland's I-495 and I-270 private-public project is estimated to cost between $9 billion to $11 billion.

Gov. Larry Hogan delivered his fifth State of the State speech, declaring that “the state of our state has never been stronger.” Here are some key takeaways from Hogan’s speech.

One problem, though. The newsletter chart that Hogan's people point to is for the U.S.-Canada market, not the world.

That said, other projects costs reported from around the world are not bigger. And another organization — Inframation Group — has labeled the Maryland project as the largest active P3 in the world.

The Public Works Financing newsletter also shows that the Purple Line's projected $2.65 billion cost ranks higher than any other transit project on the publication's list.

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