More Work Needed on Chesapeake Blueprint Implementation

The Chesapeake Bay Foundation's 2021 State of The Blue Print shows progress but more work to be done.  The Chesapeake Bay Foundation (CBF) recently released its 2021 State of The Blueprint. The report showed significant strides in meeting the Chesapeake Clean Water Blueprint by the 2025 implementation deadline. The Blueprint is a plan outlining pollution reduction targets for Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Virginia, the three states that make up 90% of the Chesapeake Bay's pollution. https://twitter.com/chesapeakebay/status/1486007218868822022…

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MDOT Announces $1M for Baltimore, Cecil, and Montgomery Counties

The Maryland Department of Transportation State Highway Administration recently announced over $1 million in highway safety grants. The Maryland Department of Transportation State Highway Administration (MDOT SHA) recently announced more than $1 million in federal Highway Safety Improvement Program (HSIP) grants. The funds will go towards safety projects focused on eliminating pedestrian fatalities and serious injuries on state roadways. https://twitter.com/MDSHA/status/1484617368085094407 According to the press release: “The Maryland Department of Transportation is committed to promoting safety…

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Montgomery Launches First Electric Vehicle Purchasing Cooperative Pilot

Earlier today Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich announced an initiative to accelerate the adoption of EVs by the public. Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich issued a challenge to County residents and businesses today to “Lead the EV Charge” by pledging to buy electric vehicles as the County launched the Washington Region’s first Electric Vehicle (EV) Purchasing Cooperative pilot program. The initiative is designed to accelerate the adoption of EVs by the public in an effort…

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This Week: MDH to Brief State Lawmakers on Cyberattack

Maryland Department of Health to brief House-Senate Joint Committee on lingering high-profile cyberattack. On Thursday, the Maryland Department of Health will brief the House Health and Government Operations Committee and the Senate Education, Health, and Environmental Affairs Committee on a cyberattack that took several department-hosted systems offline and hamstrung the department's capacity to update its COVID-19 data dashboard. While many MDH systems are back online, some remain inaccessible. https://twitter.com/Del_Cullison/status/1480912380699693056 Hackers are increasingly targeting states and…

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Nominations Open for Maryland Preservation Awards

The Maryland Historical Trust has begun accepting nominations for the 2022 Maryland Preservation Awards.  Since 1975 the Board of Trustees of the Maryland Historical Trust has presented the Maryland Preservation Awards. These awards are the highest level of recognition for historic preservation, heritage education, and community development projects in Maryland. The awards honor and celebrate significant achievements by individuals, businesses, contractors, non-profit organizations, local governments, and others who protect, promote, share, and give continued life…

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Jan 19 Webinar: Cities for Life with Jason Corburn

Smart Growth will be hosting a webinar to discuss how communities can heal from trauma.  Who: Professor Jason Corburn & Smart Growth What: Can communities do to promote the health and healing of all their residents? Join the Smart Growth Network at 1:00 p.m. EST Wednesday, January 19, as Jason Corburn, professor of urban planning and public health at UC Berkeley, draws from a decade of work with communities in California, Kenya, and Columbia, to…

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MDE Accepting Applications for Light-Duty EVSE Installations

Using funds from the Volkswagen Mitigation Settlement, MDE will accept applications for proposals on charging infrastructure until April 15, 2022. The Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE), in coordination with the Maryland Energy Administration (MEA), recently announced that they would begin accepting applications for the second of three rounds of funding under the Volkswagen Mitigation Settlement. Applicants have until the close of business on April 15, 2022, to submit applications. Maryland received roughly $11.3 million…

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Montgomery Announces #SwitchFromSix Policy

Montgomery County's Department of Environmental Protection (MCDEP) announces a ban on polystyrene food service ware and loose-fill packaging.  In October 2020, Montgomery County Council passed a law banning polystyrene packaging. That law finally took effect earlier this week. Under the ban, polystyrene products (i.e., those labeled with #6) can no longer be used within the county. Products that contain polystyrene include foam and non-foam/rigid containers, bowls, plates, trays, cartons, cups, egg cartons, etc. Accord MCDEP,…

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Blue Ribbon Panel: State Parks Should Expand Capacity, Advance Equity

The State Park Investment Commission's final report outlines 40 recommendations to enhance capacity and equity. Their far-reaching suggestions encompass capital and operating funding, substantial staffing enhancements, and local government coordination. Background In response to the pandemic, attendance at Maryland's state parks swelled. Families were seeking a safe refuge that offered a chance to leave their living rooms and a change of scenery. Demand for public spaces surged, causing many state parks to limit access --…

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Cybersecurity & IT Issues

With the 2021 Legislative Session rapidly approaching, MACo is profiling some major issues that stand to gather attention in the General Assembly's work. Here, we preview potential actions surrounding Cybersecurity & IT.  Globally cyber attacks are on the rise. This month, the Maryland Department of Health fell victim to a cyberattack from which they are still recovering. In recent years both Baltimore County Public School and Baltimore City were targeted by criminals, causing significant disruption…

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