Comptroller Swiftly Proposes Online Sales Tax Regs

Following the Supreme Court’s June decision in the Wayfair case allowing states to collect sales and use taxes on purchases made online, the Comptroller’s office swiftly submitted draft emergency regulations providing a conceptual framework for what would trigger collection of such taxes here in Maryland. The regulations could take effect as early as the end of this month.

The regulations would subject online sales transactions to the State’s 6 percent sales and use tax if the sale is made by a retailer who, either within the previous or current calendar year, made at least 200 sales transactions within the state, or the retailer earned at least $100,000 in gross revenue on sales in Maryland.

South Dakota v. Wayfair – a much-followed case by jurisdictions depending on sales tax revenue for their general funds – overturned Quill Corp. v. North Dakota. In Quill, the Supreme Court held that states cannot require retailers with no in-state physical presence to collect sales tax. Now, they can – but first, states must enact regulations similar to North Dakota’s in order to ensure that tax collections and remittance are not overly burdensome on retailers.

The Comptroller’s Office indicated that they “looked … very carefully” at the North Dakota regulations first.

The State’s head tax collector filed both emergency and proposed regulations with the General Assembly’s Joint Committee on Administrative, Executive, and Legislative Review (AELR),  which reviews draft regulations for conformity with statutory authority and legislative intent.

Emergency regulations bypass the normal public notice and comment period, and only remain in effect for 180 days or less, to provide time for the regulating agency to submit regular proposed regulations. Emergency regulations are not published in the Maryland Register before adoption, like regular proposed regulations are. However, notice of AELR’s receipt of the draft emergency regulation are posted on the Maryland General Assembly website. In addition, the requesting agency must post the draft regulations on its website within three business days of submission to the committee.

If an AELR member requests a public hearing on the emergency adoption of a regulation, the committee must hold the hearing. If no member makes such a request, committee staff may “poll on the emergency regulation” 10 business days after the draft’s receipt, and it takes effect at that time.

The regulations could result in the State’s General Fund receiving a significant, yet indeterminable, influx of funds. A recent Department of Legislative Services analysis estimated that uncollected sales taxes from remote sales to Maryland residents (including online sales, as well as catalog and mail order sales) could have totaled approximately $320 million in fiscal 2017.

 

 

Conduit Street Podcast: What’s up with the Bay? SALT Suit, & Recruiting Top-Tier Teachers

On the latest episode of the Conduit Street Podcast, Kevin Kinnally and Michael Sanderson discuss how and why recent storms have sent sediment and debris pouring into the Chesapeake Bay, examine the multistate lawsuit against the federal government in response to the $10,000 limit on the federal deduction for state and local taxes (SALT), and break down the Kirwan Commission’s High-Quality Teachers and Leaders workgroup.

MACo has made the podcast available through both iTunes and Google Play Music by searching Conduit Street Podcast. You can also listen on our Conduit Street blog with a recap and link to the podcast.

You can listen to previous episodes of the Conduit Street Podcast on our website.

Useful Links

Previous Conduit Street Coverage: Kirwan Commission Considers Major Pay Increase for Teachers

Previous Conduit Street Coverage: Maybe Stay Away From the Bay Today (July 31)…

Agriculture Worried About General Assembly Shake-Up

Cecil Whig article (2018-07-24) described how the agricultural community is carefully watching how the November general elections will play out, especially given the loss of several pro-agriculture incumbents during the primary. Maryland Farm Bureau Government Relations Director Colby Ferguson voiced several concerns in the article, noting that while “food is bipartisan” there were now many legislators who had no farms within their district. Ferguson also touched on the loss of several ag-friendly incumbents Senators: Finance Committee Chair Thomas “Mac” Middleton; Education, Health, and Environmental Affairs Committee Chair Joan Carter Conway; and Wayne Norman. From the article:

 “And we lost Wayne Norman. He was a tremendous supporter of agriculture in Cecil County and across the state.” …

Ferguson said the Farm Bureau also had relationships with several high-ranking legislators from urban areas who will no longer be in office because of surprising primary losses. Thomas “Mac” Middleton (D-Charles) and Joan Carter Conway (D-Baltimore City) were some of those powerful incumbents to be unseated.

“(Conway) was not necessarily a voice for the farm community, but she was a moderate and she looked at things fairly,” Ferguson said.

The article also discussed the challenge Maryland’s agriculture and seafood industries were facing due to federal legal requirements on seasonal immigrant workers and the potential benefits composting could bring to agriculture.

Appeals Court: Corporate Facility Correctly Assessed Hotel Tax

The Maryland Court of Special Appeals has decided to let Montgomery County keep the $1.47 million in hotel taxes it collected from Lockheed Martin’s private “hotel” from 2009 to 2012.

Lockheed Martin operates the Center for Leadership Excellence, located at the company’s corporate headquarters in Bethesda, as a training center for its 100,000 employees. The employees are provided sleeping accomodations on the premises, but those accommodations are not made available to the public. The facility includes 183 guest rooms, a 250-seat amphitheater, training rooms, a restaurant and fitness center.

In 2013, the Maryland General Assembly passed legislation exempting from county hotel rental taxes accommodations that are operated solely in support of a corporate headquarters or conference facility, and that are available only to employees or other corporate guests, but not to the general public. (Apparently, only Lockheed’s facility benefit from the exemption, at least at the time.) The legislature amended out of the bill language which would have enabled a taxpayer like Lockheed Martin to claim a refund for hotel taxes it paid before the bill became law. Even with the amendment, a number of legislators voted against the bill – including a handful from Montgomery County.

Lockheed Martin originally brought its refund claim to Maryland Tax Court, which denied its refund request. But, when Martin sought judicial review in Montgomery Circuit Court, that court granted the refund. According to Bethesda Magazine, the judge:

concluded that a 2009 change to the county’s hotel tax law–to remove the phrase “public and private” from the definition of hotel–rendered the applicability of the tax to the CLE ambiguous.

The county appealed to the Court of Special Appeals – which ruled that the hotel tax had been accurately assessed, after all.

Lockheed Martin now has the opportunity to file for one last appeal to Maryland’s highest court, the Court of Appeals.

 

 

Kirwan Commission Considers Major Pay Increase for Teachers

Eliminating the gap in compensation between teachers and high-status professions that require comparable levels of education is a major piece of the [Kirwan] Commission on Innovation and Excellence in Education’s preliminary report. The High-Quality Teachers and Leaders workgroup, one of four workgroups tasked with costing out the Commission’s preliminary recommendations, today discussed a potential model for increasing teacher pay commensurate with advancement on the career ladder.

Maryland Occupations/Salaries: Comparable Occupations List

According to the chart below, teachers in Maryland earn approximately 20% less than professionals working in comparable fields. The workgroup debated adjusting the “comparable profession” salaries to reflect a 10-month work year, which is typical for teachers. While the workgroup ultimately decided against adjusting the numbers, they did remove “Inspectors, Testers, Sorters, Samplers, and Weighers” from the list (the lowest paying comparable occupation), rejecting it as a similar profession.

Framework for Phase-in of Teacher Salary Increases

According to the Commission’s preliminary report, advancement up the ladder should be based on the acquisition of specified knowledge and skills, rigorous evidence of success as a classroom teacher, and/or additional responsibilities commensurate with the additional compensation. The chart below depicts a significant pay increase for teachers who obtain National Board Certification.

Notably, after determining the draft plan would fail to close the compensation gap between teachers and comparable professions, the workgroup asked staff to make a number of changes, including replacing the 10% pay increase in year four with a 40% or 50% pay increase in year four. Commission staff will present cost estimates for the proposed changes at the next meeting.

According to the workgroup, a systematic phase-in of salary increases for teachers (above and beyond cost-of-living adjustments) is necessary in order to stem the decline in teacher recruitment and retention and to begin reducing the gap between compensation levels for teachers and other professions requiring comparable levels of education.

Teacher and staff salaries drive education costs, often making up for more than half of school system budgets. The workgroup acknowledged that raising teacher pay will also result in higher teacher retirement costs and other post-employment benefits. Commission staff will present those fiscal estimates at the next meeting.

The Commission’s four working groups will continue working to develop a consensus on the design, implementation plan, and cost for each of the preliminary recommendations. Once the working groups have completed their work, they will present their recommendations and cost estimates to the full Commission. The chair will work with staff and consultants to develop a draft cost estimate based on the recommendations of the working groups (as considered by the full Commission) for the full Commission’s consideration.

The 2016 Commission on Innovation and Excellence in Education was created by legislation introduced in the General Assembly. The Commission membership parallels that of the earlier Thornton Commission.

The Commission was originally set to complete its work in time for the 2018 session of the General Assembly, but last October asked for an extension when it became clear the deadline was not realistic. Prior to breaking for the 2018 legislative session, the Commission released a preliminary report detailing its preliminary recommendations.

MACo is entitled to two representatives on the Commission, under the legislation. Montgomery County Councilmember Craig Rice, MACo’s Education Subcommittee Chair, and Allegany County Commissioner Bill Valentine, MACo’s Education Subcommittee Vice Chair, represent MACo on the Commission.

Stay tuned to Conduit Street for more information.

Useful Links

2017 Preliminary Report

Previous Conduit Street Coverage

MACo’s Summer Conference will include a session on education funding and accountability, and how to best ensure that Maryland students receive a fair, equitable, and high-quality education. The session, “Angling for Educational Excellence: Kirwan 2.0,” is scheduled for 10:15 am – 11:15 am on Saturday, August 18, 2018.

The 2018 MACo Summer Conference will be held August 15-18 at the Roland Powell Convention Center in Ocean City, Maryland. This year’s theme is “Water, Water Everywhere.”

Learn more about MACo’s Summer Conference:

State Board Hears Update on School Safety Initiatives

The Maryland State Board of Education yesterday heard an update on school safety initiatives aimed at improving school safety through a variety of statewide standards and guidelines. As previously reported on Conduit StreetSB 1265, Maryland Safe to Learn Act of 2018, passed the General Assembly on the final day of the 2018 legislative session and was signed into law by Governor Larry Hogan.

Maryland Center for School Safety (MCSS)

MCSS is made an independent unit within MSDE. The bill transfers some of the center’s existing duties to the subcabinet, and adds the following duties to MCSS’s charge:

  • assist local school systems to identify resources and implement training for students and parents about relationship violence, identifying the signs of unhealthy relationships, and preventing relationship violence;
  • analyze data on SROs and develop guidelines for local school systems regarding the assignment and training of SROs;
  • certify school safety coordinators;
  • consult with local school systems on safety evaluations;
  • review and comment on school emergency plans; and
  • report on life-threatening incidents that occur on public school grounds.
Courtesy of MSDE

The bill establishes a School Safety Subcabinet, which also serves as the governing board for the Maryland Center for School Safety (MCSS). The State Superintendent or designee chairs the subcabinet and the Executive Director of MCSS provides staff.

The subcabinet is charged with multiple responsibilities, chief among them (1) collaborating with various stakeholders to provide a comprehensive, coordinated approach to school safety; (2) initiating collaborative partnerships and facilitating coordination among stakeholders to leverage existing resources to deliver school safety services uniformly to local school systems; (3) distributing grants from the Safe Schools Fund; and (4) adopting regulations to carry out its responsibilities. The subcabinet must submit an annual report with specified information.

The subcabinet is also given responsibility for making grants for security-related expenses to schools and child care centers at risk of hate crimes under Chapter 732 of 2016; the bill authorizes the Governor to transfer $1.0 million from the Governor’s Office on Crime Control and Prevention (GOCCP) to the Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE) for this purpose.

The School Safety Subcabinet Advisory Board is established and includes a broad array of stakeholders to advise and assist the subcabinet in carrying out its duties. A member of the advisory board may not receive compensation but is entitled to reimbursement of expenses.

Courtesy of MSDE

School Safety and Security Funding Overview

One-Time Funding:

  • $2.5 million in safety assessment grants to be administered by MCSS
  • $10 million in MSDE administered school safety grants
  • $10 million in grants to be administered by the Maryland Interagency Committee on School Construction (IAC) for safety-related operating and capital projects
  • $10 million in school safety improvement grants provided in the capital budget

Permanent Funding:

  • $10 million in mandated funding in FY 2019 and beyond for school resource officers (SROs) and other local law enforcement strategies to provide adequate school coverage. MCSS will provide grants to local school systems and law enforcement agencies to meet the SRO/law enforcement coverage requirements. Grants must be made based on the proportion of public schools in each jurisdiction.
  • Minimum of $2 million for 13 new positions at the Maryland Center for School Safety
Courtesy of MSDE

School Resource Officers

A school resource officer is defined as (1) a law enforcement officer assigned to a school in accordance with a memorandum of understanding between a local law enforcement agency and a local school system or (2) a Baltimore City School Police Officer, as defined in current law. By September 1, 2018, MCSS, in consultation with local school systems, must develop a specialized curriculum to be used in training SROs that addresses specified issues. The curriculum must be submitted to the Maryland Police Training and Standards Commission (MPTSC) for approval. By March 1, 2019, MCSS must develop and submit to MPTSC for approval a model training program based on the curriculum. Each local law enforcement agency must enroll SROs either in (1) the MCSS model training program or (2) a local training program approved by MPTSC that is consistent with the approved curriculum. All SROs must complete an approved specialized training program by September 1, 2019.

MCSS must collect specified data on SROs and, by December 15, 2018, develop guidelines based on its analysis of the data to assist local school systems in (1) determining the appropriate number and assignment of SROs, including supplemental coverage by local law enforcement agencies and (2) collaborating and communicating with local law enforcement agencies. By July 1, 2019, each local school system must develop a plan in
consultation with local law enforcement to implement the guidelines and submit its plan to MCSS for review and comment.

Beginning with the 2018-19 school year, and each school year thereafter, each local school system must file a report with MCSS before the school year begins that demonstrates (1) that each public school has an SRO assigned to the school or (2) if no SRO is assigned to a public school, that adequate local law enforcement coverage will be provided to the school. MCSS must submit annual summaries of the SRO reports it receives to the Governor and General Assembly.

Deadlines: Center & Subcabinet

According to the Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE), it is on track to meet the implementation deadlines outlined in the legislation.

Model Policy for Assessment Teams

By September 1, 2018, the subcabinet must develop a model policy for the establishment of one or more assessment teams in each local school system. The model policy must include specified provisions generally related to (1) the identification of, and intervention with, students or other individuals who may pose a threat to school safety; (2) the composition and appropriate number of assessment teams within local school systems; and (3) training for the assessment teams.

By September 1, 2019, each local school system must adopt a policy for the establishment of assessment teams that is consistent with the model policy. Local policies must include:

  • a process for regular assessment and intervention, including diversion and de-escalation, if an individual exhibits behavior that may pose a threat to school safety;
  • standards for timely response and procedures for coordination among members of the team, including referral of relevant information to appropriate authorities; and
  • standards and procedures for the referral of an individual for evaluation, services, or treatment when appropriate.
Courtesy of MSDE
Courtest of MSDE

Deadlines: School System

School Safety Evaluations and Emergency Plans

Each local school system must designate a school safety coordinator, who must be certified by MCSS and serve as the liaison between the local school system, local law enforcement, and MCSS. By June 15, 2019, and regularly thereafter, each local school system must conduct a safety evaluation of each school to (1) identify and, if necessary, develop solutions for physical safety concerns and (2) identify and evaluate any patterns of safety concerns on school property or at school-sponsored events. In conducting the safety evaluations, each safety coordinator must consult with MCSS, coordinate with IAC, and submit a summary of the completed evaluations to MCSS.

MSDE must update the Emergency Planning Guidelines for Local School Systems by December 1, 2019, to reflect the initial findings from local safety evaluations.

By July 1, 2020, and regularly thereafter, each local school system must update the school emergency plan for each public school. The plans must conform to the MSDE guidelines regarding how the school will address behavioral threats and emergency events. In updating the plans, local school systems must work with MCSS to correct any identified weaknesses.

School safety evaluations, emergency plans, and local law enforcement coverage policies are not subject to inspection under the Maryland Public Information Act, except by designated State agencies, emergency management agencies, and local law enforcement in the performance of their official duties.

Courtesy of MSDE

Mental Health Services 

By September 1, 2018, each local school system must appoint a mental health services coordinator to coordinate existing mental health services and referral procedures within the local school system. Working with specified local entities, the coordinator must (1) ensure that a student who is referred for mental health services obtains the necessary services; (2) maximize external funding for mental health and wraparound services, as defined by the bill; and (3) develop plans for delivering behavioral health and wraparound services to students who exhibit specified behaviors of concern. Grants from the Safe Schools Fund may be used to develop plans for delivering mental health and wraparound services. 

The bill requires the subcabinet to review the local plans for delivering behavioral health and wraparound services (discussed above) and identify gaps in the availability of services and providers for school-age children in the State by December 1, 2018. It also requires the Kirwan Commission to include in its final report (due December 31, 2018) recommendations for additional mental health and wraparound services in local school systems and funding required for those services.

Courtesy of MSDE

Useful Links

MSDE’s presentation to the State Board of Education.

Previous Conduit Street Coverage: Maryland Safe to Learn Act of 2018: What You Need to Know

Conduit Street Podcast: On the Road with MACo, “Staggering” Price of Pre-K, & Primary Election Roundup

On the latest episode of the Conduit Street Podcast, Kevin Kinnally and Michael Sanderson discuss MACo’s odyssey across Maryland, update the “too close to call” county primary races, and explore the potential implications of the Kirwan Commission’s staggering cost estimates for expanding high-quality, full-day pre-K in Maryland.

Listen here:

MACo has made the podcast available through both iTunes and Google Play Music by searching Conduit Street Podcast. You can also listen on our Conduit Street blog with a recap and link to the podcast.

You can listen to previous episodes of the Conduit Street Podcast on our website.

Useful Links

Previous Conduit Street Coverage: Expanding Pre-K Comes with “Staggering” Price Tag

Previous Conduit Street Coverage: Some County Primary Races Still Too Close to Call (Updated)

New House of Delegates Leadership Unveiled

Maryland Reporter article (2018-07-19) reported that Maryland House of Delegates Speaker Michael Busch has made major leadership changes to the House as a result of recent primary results. Key changes include:

  • Delegate Luke Clippinger (Baltimore City) becomes chair of the Judiciary Committee
  • Delegate Vanessa Atterbeary (Howard County) becomes vice-chair of the Judiciary Committee
  • Delegate Eric Bromwell (Baltimore County) becomes vice-chair of the Economic Matters Committee
  • Delegate Joseline Pena-Melnyk ( Prince George’s and Anne Arundel Counties) becomes vice-chair of the Health and Government Operations Committee
  • Delegate Kathleen Dumais (Montgomery County) becomes Majority Leader

The article included the full text of Busch’s announcement. Here are Busch’s thoughts on the appointments of Dumais and Clippinger:

“There was no better choice for House Majority Leader than Kathleen [Dumais] leading us in to the next term,” said Speaker Busch. “Kathleen has proven herself to be a consensus builder and is one of the hardest working members in the House of Delegates – often working from dawn until dusk. I am confident she will bring energy and focus to the Majority Leader position.” …

“This is the first change for leadership in the House Judiciary Committee in 25 years and Luke [Clippinger] is the right person for the job,” said Speaker Busch. “Criminal justice policy is evolving more rapidly every year and I am pleased to name an experienced practitioner to lead this committee for the next term. Luke has proven himself time and again as having the ability to work with people from all backgrounds and bring a common sense, forward-thinking approach to policy issues.”

The article also included additional appointments and subcommittee chair announcements.

Expanding Pre-K Comes with “Staggering” Price Tag

Expanding high-quality pre-kindergarten for all four-year-olds and low-income three-year-olds is a hallmark of the [Kirwan] Commission on Innovation and Excellence in Education’s preliminary report. The Early Childhood Education workgroup, one of four workgroups tasked with costing out the Commission’s preliminary recommendations, today released initial cost estimates for expanding high-quality, full-day pre-K in Maryland — and the numbers are staggering.

Cost of Expanding Pre-K in Maryland

According to the education consulting firm Augenblick, Palaich, And Associates (APA) and the Maryland State Department of Education, expanding high-quality, full-day pre-K to low income (300% FPL) four-year-olds would cost approximately $230 million in 2019.

By 2024, the cost for expanding high-quality, full-day pre-K to low-income (300% FPL) four-year-olds jumps to approximately $456 million.

Notably, while the Commission’s preliminary report calls for expanding pre-K to all four-year-olds, these estimates only account for low-income four-year-olds.

The cost of expanding high-quality, full-day pre-K to all low-income (300% FPL) three-year-olds would cost approximately $456 million.

One Commissioner called the numbers “staggering,” while others questioned whether the State should include the cost of high-quality pre-K as part of its compensatory program. The compensatory program is designed to provide extra support to students coming from backgrounds of poverty. For every student who qualifies for Free and Reduced Price Meals, school systems receive an amount equal to 97% of their per-pupil foundation amount.

As Maryland expands pre-kindergarten for young children in the state, building the capacity of the early childhood education (ECE) workforce will be a key issue. The workgroup plans to review the current requirements for ECE educators before presenting their final recommendations to the full Commission.

Judy Centers/Early Childhood Development Centers

Judith P. Hoyer Early Child Care and Family Education Centers, known as “Judy Centers,” offer a wide range of services for low-income children and their families. Maryland’s Network of 25 Family Support Centers provide free, comprehensive services to families, targeting parents and their young children.

The Early Childhood Education workgroup will recommend expanding Judy Centers and Family Support Centers to provide and coordinate access to education and support services for at-risk young children ages 0-5 and their families. The plan calls for the expansion of Judy Centers to be phased in over ten years, with the neediest communities receiving the highest priority.

MSDE will be required to consider geographic diversity when selecting a Title I school to locate a new Judy Center and coordinate placement of new Judy Centers in order to serve multiple Title I schools in a high needs area or region.

Like Judy Centers, the expansion of Family Support Centers will be phased in over ten years, with priority in opening new Family Support Centers going to on the most underserved neediest communities.

MSDE will be required to consider geographic diversity when selecting regions to locate a new Family Support Center and coordinate placement of new Family Support Centers in order to serve multiple, adjacent counties or areas in need of a Family Support Center. Currently, nine counties (Calvert, Charles, Garrett, Harford, Howard, St. Mary’s, Somerset, Wicomico, and Worcester) do not have a Family Support Center.

The workgroup’s plan calls on the State to open three new centers a year so that by FY2029, there will be 30 new Family Support Centers.

The Commission’s four working groups will continue working to develop a consensus on the design, implementation plan, and cost for each of the preliminary recommendations. Once the working groups have completed their work, they will present their recommendations and cost estimates to the full Commission. The chair will work with staff and consultants to develop a draft cost estimate based on the recommendations of the working groups (as considered by the full Commission) for the full Commission’s consideration.

The 2016 Commission on Innovation and Excellence in Education was created by legislation introduced in the General Assembly. The Commission membership parallels that of the earlier Thornton Commission.

The Commission was originally set to complete its work in time for the 2018 session of the General Assembly, but last October asked for an extension when it became clear the deadline was not realistic. Prior to breaking for the 2018 legislative session, the Commission released a preliminary report detailing its preliminary recommendations.

MACo is entitled to two representatives on the Commission, under the legislation. Montgomery County Councilmember Craig Rice, MACo’s Education Subcommittee Chair, and Allegany County Commissioner Bill Valentine, MACo’s Education Subcommittee Vice Chair, represent MACo on the Commission.

The Commission’s next meeting will be held on Friday, July 13, 2018; 9:30 am-5:30 pm, at 120 House Office Building (House Appropriations Committee Room), 6 Bladen Street, Annapolis, Maryland.

Materials from today’s meeting are available on the Department of Legislative Services website, and meetings viewable online by searching the House Appropriations Committee room on the dates of each meeting.

Stay tuned to Conduit Street for more information.

Useful Links

2017 Preliminary Report

Previous Conduit Street Coverage

The Commission is expected to complete its work in time for the 2019 session of the General Assembly, and has recently sharpened its focus on education formulas — including the pattern and role of county funding. At this year’s MACo Summer Conference, attend this general session to learn how county governments could be affected by the Commission’s final report.

Angling for Educational Excellence: Kirwan 2.0

Description: The [Kirwan] Commission on Innovation and Excellence in Education was formed in 2016 to answer two questions: Should the state revise current education funding formulas? And what major new education policies must be enacted to put Maryland public schools on par with the best in the world? The Commission released preliminary policy recommendations earlier this year, and has recently sharpened its focus on education formulas — including the pattern and role of county funding. Spending formulas, systematic accountability, and resource equity are all hot topics. How will the Kirwan Commission’s recommendations affect county governments? This session focuses on education funding and accountability, and how to best ensure that Maryland students receive a fair, equitable, and high-quality education.

Speakers:

  • Dr. William “Brit” Kirwan, Chair, Commission on Innovation and Excellence in Education
  • The Honorable Craig Rice, Council Member, Montgomery County
  • The Honorable William Valentine, Commissioner, Allegany County

Moderator: The Honorable Maggie McIntosh, Maryland House of Delegates

Date/Time: Saturday, August 18, 2018; 10:15 am – 11:15 am

MACo’s 2018 Summer Conference will be held Aug. 15-18 at the Roland Powell Convention Center, in Ocean City, MD.

Learn more about MACo’s Summer Conference:

 

State Revs Up Corrections Recruitment Efforts

Acknowledging a years-long problem with understaffing at state correctional facilities, the State Division of Corrections plans to step up its recruitment efforts.

The Division continues to hold job fairs and testing all around the state, and most recently announced that it plans to hire a private recruiting firm to fill vacancies.

Herald-Mail highlights frustration from unions, correctional officers, and state elected officials relating to the staffing shortage:

“I don’t understand why we’re having this conversation for three years in a row,” Patrick Moran, president of Council 3 of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, told Herald-Mail Media on Thursday. …

“What I’m getting is there’s frustration from the correctional officers with the administration and the union,” Del. Mike McKay, R-Washington/Allegany, said. “They feel their concerns are not getting to where they need to go.

“The staffing shortage is unacceptable,” he added.

Last session, the General Assembly included a number of provisions in the budget related to Corrections’ understaffing.