Prince George’s, NAACP File Suit Against U.S. Census Bureau

The NAACP and Prince George's County have sued the U.S. Census Bureau on the grounds that the agency's preparations have been insufficient for the 2020 census. From WBAL: The civil rights group and Prince George’s County, a majority African American county in Maryland, filed the lawsuit last Friday in federal court in Maryland. It claims the Census Bureau wasn’t planning to put enough workers in the field and hadn’t opened up a sufficient number of…

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Webinar Jan 14 — Preemption: Opportunities and Challenges for Local Public Health

Topic Policy, Partners, and Preemption: Opportunities and Challenges for Local Public Health Local public health policy can have a positive impact on the health of the community, creating healthier conditions for living through everything from water fluoridation to tobacco use to minimum wage laws. But did you know that state governments can limit – or even eliminate – the impacts of locally developed policies? Fortunately, options for local public health partnerships are available to manage…

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New Online Tool Tracks State Preemption Laws

State preemption of local laws undermines local innovation and blocks local governments from advancing policies to advance public health, keep residents safe, preserve community character, and respond to local concerns. This troubling trend of states restraining local autonomy is a disservice to voters who deserve responsive and accountable governance. According to Route Fifty: “This is a national preemption movement that is occurring,” [CEO of the National League of Cities Clarence] Anthony told Route Fifty on Thursday.…

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Risk Management Best Practices at #MACoCon

County attendees to the 2019 December MACo Winter Conference learned the basics of risk management and the necessary tools to minimize liability at panel "Academy Core: Basics of Risk Management." on December 4. Good risk management practices are essential for local governments as they oversee many high-risk functions, including public safety, infrastructure maintenance, waste disposal, and special events. Reducing and controlling loss exposure protects a county and its taxpayers from unnecessary risk. Local Government Insurance…

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Experts Discuss Maryland’s Cannabis Conundrum at #MACoCon

The State's fiscal picture, and a pending commitment to substantial new education investments, has driven talk of authorizing new activities that carry substantial new revenue potential. Public health, social equity, local reinvestment, tax and license structures, and economic development remain at the forefront of the discussion as state lawmakers consider how to best foster the growth of a responsible and legitimate cannabis industry. And although leaders of the Maryland General Assembly’s Marijuana Legalization Workgroup recently…

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Preview the 2020 Session “Big Picture”

A compilation of Issue Papers previews major fiscal and policy issues facing the General Assembly in the year ahead. This resource is a handy guide to the top issues that your legislators will be tackling in 2020 – a great preparation document for county officials in advance of meetings with their local Delegations. Developed by the Department of Legislative Services (DLS), the 2020 Issue Papers are an annual staple for the Annapolis policy-inclined population. They are also…

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Legalized Cannabis, Public Information Act Among Issues Discussed at 2019 MACo Attorneys Conference

County attorneys and legal staff from across the state attended the 2019 MACo Attorneys Conference on November 13. The annual conference allows county legal staff to receive important policy updates and discuss emerging legal challenges. Attendees heard updates on: (1) Maryland's Public Information Act; (2) Open Meetings Act; (3) recent Attorney General opinions; (4) human resource and liability issues posed by legalized cannabis; (5) sheriff and deputy sheriff liability issues; (6) 2019 interim issues; and…

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Best Practices for Solar Siting at #MACoCon

Find out the latest on local solar siting regulations and zoning at the December 2019 MACo Winter Conference. Learn how counties are working with the recent Perennial decision and discover best practices that could help your county address this challenging land use issue. Let the Sunshine In: What You Need to Know About Solar Energy Siting Description The siting of large, utility-scale solar facilities in Maryland remains an ongoing concern for county governments. A recent Court of…

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Multiple States Challenging EPA on WOTUS Definition Rollback, Air Emission Standards

A Maryland Independent article (2019-10-14) reported that multiple states, including Maryland, are challenging recent regulatory changes made by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to the Clean Water Act, including repealing a change to the "Waters of the United States" (WOTUS) definition and proposed limits to Section 401 of the Act, which allows states to block construction of interstate projects like pipelines or dams if they would damage local water quality. Waters falling under the WOTUS…

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