Friday, April 6, 2018

Moribund MoCo has lowest new-business growth rate in region

You know a jurisdiction's business climate is at rock bottom, when one of its biggest critics is the former chief-of-staff of that jurisdiction's sitting County Council President. Thus, some of the best analysis of the moribund Montgomery County economy has come from Council President Helpless Hans Riemer's former chief-of-staff Adam Pagnucco on the Seventh State blog. Pagnucco has done it again, producing another set of mindblowing stats on the walking-dead MoCo economy.

In a recent post, Pagnucco showed that, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Montgomery County has the lowest rate of growth of new business establishments in the region since 2000. Only the tiny City of Falls Church has fared worse, and think of how small they are in relation to Montgomery County (they have only 15,000 residents vs. our 1.4 million).

Who was ahead of Montgomery County in new establishment growth? [If you are a Montgomery County elected official, consider this a trigger warning, and an opportune time to slip a paper bag over your head before your constituents read the following list] Loudoun County with 134% growth of new businesses established, Spotsylvania County 86%, Prince William County 82%, Stafford County 79%, Culpeper County 58%, Arlington County 42%, Fauquier County 42%, Warren County 37%, District of Columbia 37%, Rappahannock County 32%, the D.C. region as a whole 32%, Frederick County 31%, Fairfax City 30%, Fairfax County 30%, Manassas City 28%, Manassas Park City 27%, Jefferson WV 23%, Calvert County 22%, Alexandria 20%, Clarke 19%, Charles County 16%, City of Fredericksburg 12%, Prince George's County 12%.

Montgomery County, by contrast, had a paltry 10% growth rate in new establishments.

Good God. Humiliating!

The Montgomery County Council again has their [briefcases] handed to them by...Culpeper County???? LOL. Fredneck??? LOL. Jefferson bleeping West Virginia? Bleep, yes.

We already knew that Montgomery County has failed to attract a single major corporate headquarters in two decades. And that the Maryland Retailers Association reported a net loss of over 2100 retail jobs in Montgomery since 2000. But Pagnucco has found even more staggering statistics to add to the Montgomery Moribundity.

Just looking at the post-recession years alone, 2011-2016, the District of Columbia and Fairfax County enjoyed a net gain of 3000 new establishments each. Over those same years, Montgomery County had a net gain of...6. That's a single digit folks. Six.

And how about this: Pagnucco discovered only 19 new business filings in Montgomery County were recorded with the State of Maryland in FY-2016. Nineteen. 

Again, a total humiliation.

Who beat us that year within our own state? Worcester County was at the top, with 138 new business filings. Somebody call Rodney the Lifeguard to save our drowning County Council!

Pagnucco notes that 2011 was the first fiscal year completely impacted by the County Council's massive 2010 energy tax hike. He ends one of his reports with perhaps the most pertinent question in this election year:

"Which candidates for office do you think can help turn this around?"

Myself, for one. Visit my website to see why I am the best choice for the Montgomery County Council At-Large to turn around Montgomery County's utterly moribund economy.


  1. Small but important distinction: The data doesn’t actually tell us how many new businesses were established over the listed period. It shows the net growth rate. Without knowing how many establishments closed, we can’t say how many new ones opened.

    1. Talk about argle bargle! The first stat has nothing to do with net, it's about how much new business growth you have. The second stat covered clearly states it was a net gain of new establishments. MoCo was a loser on both counts, old sport.