BALTIMORE, Md. – Feb. 15, 2023 — During the 2022 legislative session, the Maryland Economic Development Corporation (MEDCO) was pleased to be named as the recipient of $2.5 million to address critical infrastructure needs to support national defense and strategic economic development initiatives in Southern Maryland. The money was allocated in the form of a Capital Grant that was accepted as part of the Maryland Board of Public Works agenda in late January. “This grant enables MEDCO to facilitate investment in critical innovation infrastructure in Southern Maryland. These projects not only leverage significant public/private investment, but also enhance mission supportive research activity and valuable job creation,” said Executive Director Tom Sadowski. The use of these funds is targeted for the acquisition, planning, design, construction, repair, renovation, reconstruction, site improvement, and capital equipping of secure compartmented information facilities.
The $2.5 million total award will be split between two projects, one each in Charles County and St. Mary County. Both projects involve long term lease agreements with defense contractors, experienced SCIF sponsors and management firms, as well as significant federal, military and national non-profit partners. Government, private and non-profit partners include the Office of Naval Research (ONR), 3RGI, LLC and the United States Bomb Technician Association (USBTA).
“Charles County is excited that the United States Bomb Technician Association is planning this important expansion in partnership with Applied Research Associates (ARA),” said Charles County Director of Economic Development Kelly Robertson-Slagle. “With the help of MEDCO’s Capital Grant investment, once fully completed, the MTC facility will be the first of its kind in the country.”
The Maryland Technology Center facility will become the center of engagement and collaboration with active-duty Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) warfighters from all military branches, and public safety bomb technicians with space for classified and unclassified training and educational spaces.
“The USBTA is honored to have been the recipient for this SCIF Capital Grant,” said President and CEO Sean Dennis. “This Grant will be instrumental with our Partner, Applied Research and Associates (ARA) in establishing a SCIF in the town of Indian Head/Charles County Maryland. Once this project is complete, there will be new jobs being created along with other potential public and private projects involving the use of a SCIF which in turn will bring in other organizations moving to the area. This project will have a positive economic impact in the community.”
Through these two public-private partnership proposals, MEDCO will not only help ensure the proper use of funds to provide SCIF space to each community, but the approved $2.5 million of SCIF funding will invest $7 million to $8 million in sustainable investments, create over 200 new jobs in the neighborhood, and create new business opportunities throughout the region. This means each dollar applied for SCIF buildout will generate an additional four to five dollars in new investment.
“Building a SCIF within the AeroPark Innovation District adds another important asset to this thriving St. Mary’s County development. The Innovation District includes higher level education institutions (University System of Maryland at Southern Maryland), numerous aviation related technology companies, a University of Maryland UAS Research and Operations Center, a busy County regional airport, defense contractors, manufacturing facilities, and a Naval Air Warfare Center Aircraft Division presence. The SCIF will allow for sensitive technology work to take place on the campus.”
“3RGI, LLC Rapid (Response Research Group) in conjunction with ONR is proud to bring this new capability to the AeroPark Innovation District, “said President Steve Bildman. “We are looking into the future and making this idea a reality with support from St Mary’s County Economic development and MEDCO. “
The AeroPark Innovation District includes many assets focused on innovative research and development. The District provides a campus-like setting that fosters collaboration and spurs innovation. The SCIF will be a great addition to the list of innovative asserts and will certainly fuel the progress and vitality within the Innovation District.
About Maryland Economic Development Corporation
MEDCO’s legislative purpose is to relieve unemployment in the State; encourage an increase of business activity and commerce and a balanced economy; help retain and attract business activity and commerce; promote economic development; and promote the health, safety, right of gainful employment, and welfare of residents of Maryland.
About United Stated Bomb Association
Established on October 19, 2016, the United States Bomb Technician Association (USBTA) is the only nonprofit public charity, recognized under Internal Revenue Code 501(c)(3), that exclusively focuses on the needs of United States bomb disposal technicians. Headquartered in Denver, Colorado, with a Technology, Research and Training Center in Indian Head, Maryland, the USBTA was created by bomb disposal technicians to address gaps in training, education, and funding, within the bomb disposal community. About 3RGI, LLC The Rapid Response Research Group, LLC or (3RGI) is a growing small business that provides sensor and system development, advanced processing solutions and integration support of airborne systems, sensors and platforms for DoD and industry. Based out of St. Mary’s County Airport, 3RGI operates a variety of turboprop and fixed winged aircraft that provide advanced maritime radar development including processing solutions, LiDAR and FOPEN development and testing of military and commercial customers.