Virginia Governor Timothy M. Kaine, Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley, Washington, D.C. Mayor Adrian M. Fenty, and U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security Michael Chertoff met today in Washington to discuss the National Capital Region's progress and cooperation on homeland security issues. Today's discussion, which built upon an initial January 12, 2007 meeting between these three local elected leaders, was held at the John A. Wilson Building in the District.
The principals discussed homeland security grants requests for the National Capital Region, continued regional cooperation on public safety issues, and agreed to formalize a communications regimen among the region's top elected leadership to occur during the first hours of a regional public emergency.
"Governor O'Malley, Mayor Fenty, and I are pleased that Secretary Chertoff was eager to meet with us to help us continue to build on our shared progress on homeland security issues in the unique National Capital Region," Governor Kaine said. "Virginia, Maryland and the District have made significant investments in this region's homeland security preparedness, and each of us is committed to work every day with our local, federal, and private sector partners to keep our citizens safe in an emergency."
"Today's meeting provided an opportunity for Governor Kaine, Mayor Fenty and I to discuss the unique homeland security issues of the National Capital Region with Secretary Chertoff," said Governor O'Malley. "Building on our meeting in January, Governor Kaine, Mayor Fenty and I remain committed to ensuring that our region is adequately prepared and trained to deal with any emergency."
"This was a very productive meeting," said Mayor Fenty. "The District of Columbia isn't an island when it comes to safety. I am grateful that Secretary Chertoff recognizes the unique challenges we face as the nation's capital. And I look forward to continuing to work with our regional partners, Governors Kaine and O'Malley."
The National Capital Region, created and defined by Congress, includes the District of Columbia, Prince Georges and Montgomery Counties in Maryland, and Arlington, Fairfax, Loudoun, Prince William, and Alexandria in Virginia.
Today's meeting was the eighth meeting between the executive leadership of the three jurisdictions since April 2003. The regional meetings have allowed the executives and their staff members to form strong cooperative relationships in areas of mutual interest and cooperation, including homeland security, air quality, transportation, the Chesapeake Bay, and tourism. The 2003 meeting was the first between Maryland, Virginia, and Washington, D.C. executives in 12 years.