Bill to Usurp Local Authority Over County Elections Moving in House

A bill to mandate the method by which county commissioners and council members are elected to represent specified districts is moving in the House of Delegates. MACo opposes HB 655, as county governments are concerned that this one-size-fits-all approach would infringe on local autonomy and flexibility in local governance. The method and structure of county elections are matters reasonably left to those governed. Currently, that authority is properly vested in county governing bodies, regardless of…

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How About Some “Notable Maryland Bills” Today?

We recommend a Twitter user's weekday threads, as he peruses the upcoming hearing schedule and comments on bills about to be heard "in Annapolis." Looking for ways to stay in touch during a mostly remote 2021 legislative session? Wondering what else is out there in the Annapolis policy landscape? Are you a committed Annapolis diehard trying to decide where to point your browser for each day's online public hearings? Follow Alex Holt on Twitter. For…

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All Three Major Rating Agencies Reaffirm Maryland’s AAA Bond Rating

Moody’s, S&P Global, and Fitch Ratings Also Maintain Stable Outlook While Noting Challenges as State Moves Towards Recovery. Maryland State Treasurer Nancy K. Kopp announced this week that in spite of continued fiscal headwinds caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the three major bond rating agencies have reaffirmed the State’s AAA bond rating, the longest continuous Triple-AAA bond rating for a state in the country. The announcement comes in advance of the upcoming competitive sale of…

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Hogan Appoints Rachel Jones to House of Delegates

Governor Larry Hogan today announced the appointment of Rachel Jones to the Maryland House of Delegates. The governor appointed Jones to the Maryland House of Delegates following the recommendation of the Calvert County Democratic Central Committee. “I am confident that Rachel Jones will be a strong advocate for constituents in Calvert and Prince George’s counties in her new role as delegate,” said Governor Hogan. “I offer her my sincere congratulations, and I look forward to…

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MACo Supports Novel Approach to Assist Low-Income Homeowners in Tax Sale

MACo Legislative Director Kevin Kinnally today testified before the House Ways and Means Committee in support of HB 852 Property - Tax Sales - Homeowner Protection Program, a novel approach to assisting low-income homeowners in tax sale, with amendments to urge the Committee to avoid unintended consequences for counties' most effective collection tool. This bill establishes the Homeowner Protection Program, which offers vulnerable homeowners payment assistance, foreclosure mediation, and other services. MACo strongly prefers that homeowners…

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Hogan Submits $1.5 Billion Supplemental Budget

Governor Larry Hogan today submitted a $1.5 billion supplemental budget for fiscal 2022, including $1.4 in federal funds to support schools, low-income home energy assistance, childcare, and emergency food assistance for residents struggling amidst the pandemic. Although customarily accepted, supplemental budgets may only be attached to the operating budget by the consent of the legislature. Governor Hogan emphasized additional resources to support the safe reopening of schools. "This supplemental budget provides further support for the…

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House Overrides Hogan’s Veto of Bill to Boost Disparity Grant Program

The House of Delegates today voted to override Governor Larry Hogan's veto of HB 737 - Local Governments - Income Tax Disparity Grants, a bill that would extend enhanced disparity grant funding for counties with proven local income tax effort.  MACo supports this bill, as disparity grant funding provides much-needed revenues to counties with limited revenue generation potential to help fund necessary services such as public safety, schools, infrastructure, and community services. On the final…

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General Assembly Overrides Hogan’s Veto on Lifelong Library Learners Act

The Maryland General Assembly voted to override Governor Larry Hogan's veto of HB 1000/SB 524 - Building Lifelong Library Learners Act. MACo supports this bill, as it boosts funding for county library capital projects, accelerates increases to the library funding formula, and provides incentives for minors to continue the use of library resources. On the final day allotted for his decision regarding legislation passed by the General Assembly during last year's abbreviated session, Governor Hogan…

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