A consultant preparing a report on the competitive position of the port of Baltimore painted an encouraging picture of the port's prospects yesterday.
Leo Donavan of the Bethesda consulting firm Booz, Allen and Hamilton presented preliminary findings of his study to the governor's panel on port competitiveness.
"From what I've seen so far, things aren't so bad as everyone expected," said a source who attended the meeting. "We compare favorably with Norfolk and elsewhere."
Another source who attended the meeting confirmed that the consultant's report contained "nothing alarming" and did not seem to indicate that any drastic measures were needed to improve the port's competitive position.
Comprising representatives of government, labor and business, the 16-member panel was appointed by the governor a year ago. The consultant is expected to present a written report to the panel in about two weeks.
The negative factors in the report were relatively minor, said one of the sources, and the report could become the basis for a marketing effort by the Maryland Port Administration aimed at selling the port's advantages.
Both sources asked not to be identified, since the participants in yesterday's meeting have been asked not to make public the contents of the report.