President Obama covered a lot of ground in Tuesday night's State of the Union address, touching on issues ranging from gun control to immigration, and from cyberdefense to education.
Most of what he said has relevance to everyone, but there were a few things that may be of particular interest to those living around Odenton and Severn. Specifically, proposals dealing with defense and infrastructure programs that might resonate with people in the Odenton and Severn area.
Here's a look at a few of the items with local relevance.
Fix-it-First Program - Obama proposed a special program to focus on the country's most urgent infrastructure repairs, such as the 70,000 bridges which he says are structurally deficient. Around here, there is much demand for infrastructure upgrades, though much of it has related to a need for capacity, not repairs. That said, rest assured that local officials will try to go after any money that may be available for roads, paths and public transit.
Partnership to Rebuild America - Obama said this program would encourage private capital to upgrade things that businesses would benefit from. He pointed specifically to pipelines, ports and schools, but it would seem that roads and public transit might also apply.
Refinancing Plan for Homeowners - The president said he'd like to see responsible homeowners have the chance to refinance at today's low rates. This would be very helpful to many people in the Odenton area who are underwater on their home loans. Obama said this could save homeowners as much as $3,000 per year.
More Available Preschools - In Anne Arundel County, there are Pre-K programs are more than 40 elementary schools, as well as Early Childhood Education Centers. (The newest such center is nearby at West Meade.) President Obama said he would propose "working with states" on making preschool available to all. The devil will be in the details on this one.
Cyber Stuff - Obama reiterated his support for advancements in cybersecurity, referencing the "rapidly growing threat" of computer attacks. Everything he said indicates continued support of growing the U.S. Cyber Command at Fort Meade.
"Now our enemies are also seeking the ability to sabotage our power grid, our financial institutions, and our air traffic control systems," he said. "We cannot look back years from now and wonder why we did nothing in the face of real threats to our security and our economy."