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<v Nigel Reed>Today on state spectrum, we'll be talking about the relationship of Maryland state <v Nigel Reed>government to the federal government. <v Nigel Reed>Our student guests here in the studio today are from Anne Arundel County. <v Nigel Reed>And we'll be talking with them in a few minutes. <v Nigel Reed>The founders of our country wanted to create a strong national government and at the same <v Nigel Reed>time preserve the governments of the 13 original states. <v Nigel Reed>They first tried a confederation of states, which they called a firm league of <v Nigel Reed>friendship. It was a committee style arrangement and it didn't work very well. <v Nigel Reed>The Articles of Confederation were the basis of this government. <v Nigel Reed>Under the Articles of Confederation, there was a Congress, but it had very limited <v Nigel Reed>powers. There was no executive branch to carry out the laws and <v Nigel Reed>no national court system to resolve disagreements. <v Nigel Reed>Well, it soon became very clear that under a confederation, the national government <v Nigel Reed>wasn't strong enough. <v Nigel Reed>The solution to the problem was a federal system of government. <v Nigel Reed>Federalism is a system in which power is divided between different levels of government
<v Nigel Reed>in the United States. Our federal system divides power between the central or national <v Nigel Reed>government and the governments of the states. <v Nigel Reed>So federalism is a dual system of government. <v Nigel Reed>Two levels, each with its own authority. <v Nigel Reed>But which powers belong to the national government in which to the states? <v Nigel Reed>The United States Constitution answers that question. <v Nigel Reed>It establishes the powers of the states and of the national government. <v Nigel Reed>We can think of those powers as playing cards. <v Nigel Reed>The power to issue money to provide public <v Nigel Reed>schools. <v Nigel Reed>To declare war. <v Nigel Reed>To raise money through taxes. <v Nigel Reed>And others. The federal constitution acted as a sort of dealer <v Nigel Reed>with the states here and the national government here. <v Nigel Reed>The purpose of federalism was to give state governments the power to act on matters close <v Nigel Reed>to home. For example, Maryland may have different needs
<v Nigel Reed>or may want to do things differently than some other states. <v Nigel Reed>Federalism makes it possible for the states to act separately by dealing <v Nigel Reed>them certain powers. <v Nigel Reed>These powers are called reserved powers because the <v Nigel Reed>Constitution reserves them for the state. <v Nigel Reed>Among other things, states have the power to provide for education. <v Nigel Reed>Regulate businesses and trade within each state establish <v Nigel Reed>local governments. <v Nigel Reed>License certain professional workers. <v Nigel Reed>And determine the qualifications of voters. <v Nigel Reed>Federalism also provides for broad actions on behalf of the entire country <v Nigel Reed>by dealing powers to the national government. <v Nigel Reed>These powers are called delegated powers. <v Nigel Reed>Because they were delegated to the federal government by the Constitution.
<v Nigel Reed>The national government has powers to regulate <v Nigel Reed>trade between states and with foreign countries. <v Nigel Reed>Issue money. <v Nigel Reed>Establish post offices. <v Nigel Reed>Declare war. <v Nigel Reed>Make peace and treaties or agreements with foreign countries. <v Nigel Reed>The states can do none of these. <v Nigel Reed>Even so, federalism is also a system of shared powers. <v Nigel Reed>Neither the national government nor the states have all the power. <v Nigel Reed>Each has some power that it alone can exercise. <v Nigel Reed>But other powers overlap. <v Nigel Reed>These powers are called shared or concurrent. <v Nigel Reed>The Constitution allows both to collect taxes. <v Nigel Reed>Borrow money. <v Nigel Reed>Establish courts. <v Nigel Reed>Enforce laws and punish criminals. <v Nigel Reed>And provide for the health and welfare of citizens.
<v Nigel Reed>The relationship of the states to the national government has been one of conflict as <v Nigel Reed>well as cooperation. For instance, one contributing factor of the civil war <v Nigel Reed>was the conflict over the right of states to withdraw entirely from the union. <v Nigel Reed>In the past 50 years, many laws have been passed which extended the power of the national <v Nigel Reed>government. One example is the 16th Amendment to the Constitution, which was enacted <v Nigel Reed>in 1913. It gave Congress the power to create a national <v Nigel Reed>income tax. <v Nigel Reed>In the 1930s, new federal programs were undertaken to regulate business, <v Nigel Reed>labor and industry. <v Nigel Reed>To develop land and manage natural resources and provide <v Nigel Reed>for citizens welfare. <v Nigel Reed>In 1974, Congress made the control of speed limits on highways a responsibility <v Nigel Reed>of the federal government when it passed a national speed limit act. <v Nigel Reed>Some of the states are still unhappy about that.
<v Nigel Reed>The state federal relationship is complicated. <v Nigel Reed>Unlike a card game, the participants are partners, not rivals. <v Nigel Reed>The relationship requires cooperation between governments. <v Nigel Reed>The costs of some government services, such as education and transportation, are shared. <v Nigel Reed>Some problems cross state lines and call upon the cooperation of several states and the <v Nigel Reed>national government. Cleaning up the Chesapeake Bay is one example. <v Nigel Reed>Eric King has that story. <v Captain Pete Sweitzer>Nobody can find any amount of seafood any- anywhere, and <v Captain Pete Sweitzer>it's on a steady decline and if nothing's done. <v Captain Pete Sweitzer>And if and if the water isn't cleaned up in the bay. <v Captain Pete Sweitzer>I predict the seafood industry in this state will completely disappear. <v Eric King>Pete Sweitzer has been a waterman on the Chesapeake Bay for almost 40 years. <v Eric King>When he first started working on the water, Pete says the bay was bountiful. <v Captain Pete Sweitzer>When you harvest the sea food those days it was a no problem <v Captain Pete Sweitzer>to find seafood, the problem back in those days was finding a market to sell it.
<v Captain Pete Sweitzer>It was that much seafood in this bay. And today it's the complete opposite. <v Eric King>What's happened to the Chesapeake Bay is a complicated story, but the meaning <v Eric King>is clear. Many of the people in industries living on or near the bay have <v Eric King>polluted its waters and killed off much of its vegetation and seafood. <v Eric King>However, efforts are now being made to clean up the bay. <v Eric King>But it's a complicated process because many different governments are involved. <v Eric King>The bay lies mostly in Maryland and Virginia, but its most important tributary, <v Eric King>the Susquehanna River, flows primarily through Pennsylvania. <v Eric King>All of those states are responsible for making sure that the bay's waters are clean and <v Eric King>productive because many residents use the bay as a source of recreation and income. <v Eric King>But the bay is also a national resource which supplies the country with some of the <v Eric King>largest batches of seafood. <v Eric King>And it's a major waterway for national and international trade. <v Eric King>Because of this, the federal government is also responsible for making sure that the bay <v Eric King>remains productive and accessible as a major port.
<v Charles Mathias, Jr.>So you have here many states involved <v Charles Mathias, Jr.>and the federal government, which clearly has an interest, but <v Charles Mathias, Jr.>which doesn't have a compelling responsibility and immediate <v Charles Mathias, Jr.>responsibility to act. <v Eric King>But Maryland Senator Charles Mathias got the federal government involved in saving the <v Eric King>bay by leading the effort to convince Congress to conduct a seven year, 28 <v Eric King>million dollar study of the bay. <v Charles Mathias, Jr.>And it was a major decision for the federal government <v Charles Mathias, Jr.>to enter this new area of activity and to begin to study the problems of the bay. <v Virginia K. Tippie>Certainly, the fishermen and the watermen were wise to <v Virginia K. Tippie>the situation long before any of these scientists, really. <v Virginia K. Tippie>But the fact of the matter is, we've all seen these changes. <v Virginia K. Tippie>But this EPA Chesapeake Bay program study documented the changes. <v Eric King>Virginia Tippee headed the Bay study, which was conducted by the federal Environmental <v Eric King>Protection Agency. The study was an important first step toward making people
<v Eric King>realize that the bay was in trouble. <v Eric King>And the research couldn't have been done without the resources of the EPA or the money <v Eric King>from the federal government. Besides sponsoring the study, the federal government had <v Eric King>another important role to play. <v Charles Mathias, Jr.>There had to be someone who could bring Maryland and Virginia and <v Charles Mathias, Jr.>Pennsylvania and West Virginia to a single <v Charles Mathias, Jr.>table where the problems of the bay could be viewed <v Charles Mathias, Jr.>as a unit, not as the Maryland part of the bay and the Virginia <v Charles Mathias, Jr.>part of the bay. But as a total bay problem. <v Eric King>And the federal government did just that in December of 1983. <v Eric King>That's when representatives from the states and the federal government got together for <v Eric King>the Chesapeake Bay conference and discussed how to save the bay. <v Virginia K. Tippie>They agreed, first of all, that the cleanup of the bay should be a state federal <v Virginia K. Tippie>partnership, that we should work together to clean the bay up. <v Virginia K. Tippie>It's not one single state's responsibility, nor is it the federal government's
<v Virginia K. Tippie>responsibility. It was all of our responsibility. <v Eric King>But Senator Mathias says at first the states didn't want the federal government involved. <v Charles Mathias, Jr.>In the first place, the state governments are reluctant <v Charles Mathias, Jr.>to have the federal government interfering in any way. <v Charles Mathias, Jr.>This is an area not only state control <v Charles Mathias, Jr.>and interest, but an area in which the states are very jealous <v Charles Mathias, Jr.>of their of their prerogatives. They've been jealous of each other. <v Eric King>But state officials realize that if they were going to save the bay, they couldn't do it <v Eric King>alone. They needed each other and the help of the federal government. <v Eric King>Dr. Torrey Brown heads Maryland's Department of Natural Resources. <v Eric King>He says the federal state partnership to save the Bay is working. <v Dr. Torrey C. Brown>We have been successful in getting many commitments from <v Dr. Torrey C. Brown>three states as the result of a federal study. <v Dr. Torrey C. Brown>And with those state commitments, federal government came back and also supplied
<v Dr. Torrey C. Brown>some of their resources. So when we work together, things do proceed <v Dr. Torrey C. Brown>much faster than when you fight with each other. <v Eric King>Thanks to the efforts of Governor Hughes and other state officials, Maryland has an <v Eric King>impressive commitment to clean up the bay. <v Eric King>The state is paying to modernize sewage treatment plants and industries that dump waste <v Eric King>into the bay waters and will help set up land management programs for farmers <v Eric King>and communities to prevent deadly materials from running into the bay. <v Eric King>The federal government will help pick up the price tag for the bay cleanup and has an <v Eric King>office that will coordinate efforts between state and federal levels. <v Captain Pete Sweitzer>Hopefully, with the help with the state and the federal government now putting <v Captain Pete Sweitzer>money into the cleanup of the bay, that we can reverse this trend <v Captain Pete Sweitzer>and build a seafood industry back up again. <v Nigel Reed>The statement was made in the program that every Marylander has a stake in the Chesapeake <v Nigel Reed>Bay. Does everybody agree with that necessarily?
<v speaker 1>I definitely think so, I mean, Maryland is so centered <v speaker 1>around the Chesapeake Bay. Even the parts that don't directly come up with the bay <v speaker 1>are directly tied into it through commerce and the economy of the region and <v speaker 1>everything. So I think the entire state is tied in with the bay. <v speaker 2>There's some in western Maryland that might say no, ours is more centered around the coal <v speaker 2>industry, or whatever, you know. I mean, just you go out on any winter day <v speaker 2>and you'll see just lines and lines of tankers. <v speaker 2>No back miles behind the bay bridge waiting it to get into well Robert and fill up with <v speaker 2>coal. So then if that wasn't there to help them out then I really think they'd <v speaker 2>feel the effects. <v speaker 3>Not necessarily. I mean, up in the western corner of Maryland, you've got people that are <v speaker 3>almost into Pennsylvania. They're almost completely separate from the state up in that <v speaker 3>little corner. And the Chesapeake Bay is not necessarily going to affect them in any way. <v speaker 2>You know, one of the big industries, whether in Pennsylvania or not, I think we have to <v speaker 2>really concern ourselves with just one state. But even the people live out there in <v speaker 2>Pennsylvania. I mean, I'm sure that they're directly affected by the bay in the same way
<v speaker 2>the people in Maryland. <v speaker 3>So you. But do you think that we should go on spending the amount of money that we are in <v speaker 3>the bay? <v speaker 1>Well, it's it's a trickle down theory. Eventually, it's going to reach everybody. <v speaker 3>I know but that money, I mean, the money could also be spent doing other things that <v speaker 3>aren't being concentrated on. Sure, the bay is has a big effect on most <v speaker 3>of the people. But there's a lot of other things up in western Maryland, other parts of <v speaker 3>the of Maryland where they could be using the money for other <v speaker 3>things other than the bay more effectively. <v speaker 1>Yes, but. <v speaker 2>You could. That would be a justified argument if in no way that the that the <v speaker 2>improvements of the bay were going to affect them. But they are going to affect them. <v speaker 1>The bay-. <v speaker 3>There's other things that there's other things that are affecting them a lot more than <v speaker 3>the bay. I mean, there-. <v speaker 1>The bay is the center of the state, though, and things tend to move out. <v speaker 3>No it's not necessarily. <v speaker 1>Commerce and things come in and out of Maryland through the bay. <v speaker 4>The bay is a local issue. It's just one part of Maryland. <v speaker 4>The Chesapeake Bay isn't located in one county. <v speaker 4>It's over 4000 like miles of shoreline. <v speaker 4>It's a it's a large thing. And many counties are involved with it.
<v speaker 4>And the counties that are involved with it could afford in cooperation with each <v speaker 4>other to sponsor the cleanup of the bay. <v speaker 5>It's awful lot of money you need to clean up the bay. <v speaker 5>I mean, a lot it can't just come from a couple counties. <v speaker 3>Well then get the federal government involved like it has been lately. <v Nigel Reed>All right. Well, once the federal government does get involved in what you may perceive <v Nigel Reed>to be a local problem, who's then to say how the money <v Nigel Reed>that the federal government allocates to the local problem be spent? <v speaker 1>Well, when you say, well, if they allocate to the local problem and the locality, <v speaker 1>it should decide how to spend money, I feel. <v speaker 3>But, you know, it's it's the federal it's the federal government's money. <v speaker 3>I mean, shouldn't- they should have a large say in what's going to happen with that <v speaker 3>money. [Speaker 1: Well-] Because it's, I mean, if they're giving if they're do-, if <v speaker 3>they're giving all this money to a project, they should be able to say, well, this is <v speaker 3>what I want done in that project. This is what we should accomplish. <v speaker 3>These are the goals that we should set and accomplish. <v speaker 2>Yea, but then again, their ideas on how they want to spend their money are based on <v speaker 2>standards that are nationwide. <v speaker 3>But it's a nationwide problem.
<v speaker 1>But it doesn't affect everybody like it affects Maryland. <v Nigel Reed>?inaudible? you were gonna say? <v speaker 6>I was gonna say the federal government, they should say what they do because look at the <v speaker 6>watermen. They never they knew the water was being polluted the whole time and never did <v speaker 6>anything. The state didn't do anything. The federal government had to come in and give <v speaker 6>the money to the state. <v speaker 5>Yea but it also took the federal government what was it? <v speaker 5>Twenty eight million dollars just to figure out there's a problem that the watermen knew <v speaker 5>for years. I mean, so long. <v Nigel Reed>I mean, you mentioned a study. And I think that may raise an interesting question here. <v Nigel Reed>We talked about a seven year study. It cost twenty eight million dollars to to <v Nigel Reed>have done. <v Nigel Reed>In the end, we received an allocation. <v Nigel Reed>The federal government gave us an allocation of ten million dollars to deal <v Nigel Reed>with the problem. Twenty eight million dollars on the study. <v Nigel Reed>Ten million dollars to fix the problem. <v Nigel Reed>Any problem with that? <v speaker 3>Well, that's partly-. <v speaker 2>Well, you can consider. You can look at it in a different way and say that it was all to <v speaker 2>fix the problem. And say it was a 38- 38 million dollar fix that it took 20 to just <v speaker 2>20 to find up to pinpoint the problem.
<v speaker 2>And the other 10 was to fix it. <v speaker 3>Well, that's partly the state's fault that they spent that so much money was spent just <v speaker 3>in discovering what the problem was. And if we had one, because they became I guess <v speaker 3>they're so detached from their watermen that the watermen had known for quite a while, <v speaker 3>as you said, that we had a problem. <v speaker 3>And the state the state wasn't connecting into that. <v speaker 1>That's I think that's the problem with giving, letting the federal government decide <v speaker 1>where the money goes. They put 28 million dollars into a study. <v speaker 1>I mean, if it was given, I think it was given it to the state, the state would put the <v speaker 1>money right into the cleanup. <v speaker 6>But why didn't the state think about doing something from the beginning? <v speaker 2>No they did- had to find the same things out to the federal government, then the things <v speaker 2>that the federal government were finding out were, you know, actual chemical problems <v speaker 2>with it and everything, the state would have had to do the exact same thing. <v speaker 4>If you look at it from a different perspective, it cost twenty eight million dollars to <v speaker 4>identify the problem. But then there's the ten million dollars that the federal <v speaker 4>government is sponsoring. But since it is a state, it's the state's problem. <v speaker 4>It's a local issue. Then the state should sponsor more of it. <v speaker 4>So that would go along that it is a local issue.
State Spectrum
Episode Number
No. 3
Federal/State Relationship
Producing Organization
Maryland Instructional Television
Contributing Organization
The Walter J. Brown Media Archives & Peabody Awards Collection at the University of Georgia (Athens, Georgia)
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Episode Description
This entry, focusing on 'Federal/State Relationship,' follows up Nigel's background explanation with a mini-documentary on efforts to clean up the Chesapeake Bay. Lyrically beautiful shots of the Bay being harvested are intercut with interviews featuring a waterman, a Maryland senator and associated agency heads. Their task is to forge a cooperative team among bordering states and the Federal government to save the Bay from pollution, i.e., to seek a balance of powers and responsibilities among all concerned. The program then returns to studio for a free-wheeling discussion with Nigel and students from Anne Arundel County. Producers allow this discussion to spill-over into the classroom by eschewing the usual production credits in favor of a full-screen question that's posed to viewers. The pump being primed, viewers are encouraged to lend a voice to a government that's still very much 'by and for the people.' That's 'State Spectrum."--1985 Peabody Awards entry form.
Series Description
"A magnificent hot air balloon sporting a wrap-around flag of Maryland ascends into the morning sky. The title, 'State Spectrum,' zooms from it to fill the screen. Nigel Reed, a friendly, unthreatening host, greets viewers and narrates a fast paced discussion of the powers held jointly and separately by the federal and state governments. Nigel likens these powers to a deck of cards, and as he plays them on behalf of the respective governments, special effects transform the card faces into motion video which vivifies each power, from imposing taxes to waging war. "And so begins another 'State Spectrum,' a series dedicated to transforming high school civics from its usual 'dry as dust' state into a television product that's contemporary, entertaining and thought provoking, without pandering to or insulting the target audience of senior high schoolers. The goals of each of the fourteen programs are rather modest: to present factual information about the structure and operation of Maryland's government, and to foster active participation in this government.
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Producing Organization: Maryland Instructional Television
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The Walter J. Brown Media Archives & Peabody Awards Collection at the University of Georgia
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Chicago: “State Spectrum; No. 3; Federal/State Relationship,” 1985-03-11, The Walter J. Brown Media Archives & Peabody Awards Collection at the University of Georgia, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed June 28, 2022,
MLA: “State Spectrum; No. 3; Federal/State Relationship.” 1985-03-11. The Walter J. Brown Media Archives & Peabody Awards Collection at the University of Georgia, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. June 28, 2022. <>.
APA: State Spectrum; No. 3; Federal/State Relationship. Boston, MA: The Walter J. Brown Media Archives & Peabody Awards Collection at the University of Georgia, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from