Md. Think Tank Brings on Chief Economist

    The Maryland Public Policy Institute, a free market think tank, has announced that economist and author Stephen J.K. Walters will serve as its Chief Economist. Walters will advise the Institute on Maryland’s economic policy issues, including the revival of Baltimore’s economy and the consequences of statewide tax policies and regulations under consideration in Annapolis.

    “Dr. Walters possesses a deep sense of what it takes to formulate transformative policies so that cities like Baltimore can thrive in the 21st century,” said Christopher B. Summers, president and chief executive officer of the Institute. “And as Maryland considers massive tax increases to pay for the Kirwan Commission recommendations, he’ll play a critical role in setting the economic agenda for the Institute and for Maryland.”

    A resident of Baltimore City, Walters’ background as an applied microeconomist includes expertise on urban policy and renewal, government regulation of business, and has frequently argued that property tax reduction is a way to unleash economic growth in urban communities.  He is also the author of “Boom Towns: Restoring the Urban American Dream ,” and serves as an Adjunct Scholar at the Cato Institute and as a Fellow of the Institute for Applied Economics, Global Health, and the Study of Business Enterprise at The Johns Hopkins University.

    “Baltimore and Maryland face many crucial policy decisions in coming months and years,” Walters said. “We need to make the right choices to help all the state’s citizens thrive, and the Institute will be a key contributor in this process.”

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    Josh Kurtz
    Co-founder and Editor Josh Kurtz is the leading chronicler of Maryland politics and government. He began covering the State House in 1995 for The Gazette newspapers, and has been writing about state and local politics ever since. He later became an editor at Roll Call, the Capitol Hill newspaper, and spent eight years at E&E News, an online subscription-only publisher of news websites covering energy and environmental issues. For seven of those years, he led a staff of 20 reporters at E&E Daily, which covers energy and environmental policy on Capitol Hill and in national politics. For 6 1/2 years he wrote a weekly column on state politics for Center Maryland and has written for several other Maryland publications as well. Kurtz has given speeches and appeared on TV and radio shows about Maryland politics through the years.