Conduit Street Podcast: Brinkley on Budgets, Amazon’s About-Face, Action on Airbnb, and More!

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.  

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Shutdown Snarls Rural Broadband Expansion

In today’s world, internet connectivity is no longer a luxury—it is a necessity. Access to affordable internet, broadband, wireless, and cellular services is an essential component of a county’s economic development and the socio-economic advancements of its residents. Residents benefit from increased economic growth, improved labor market access and outcomes, access to better health care, enhanced civic participation, enriched education opportunities, improved quality of life, and overall competitive and vibrant communities. And while there is…

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Conduit Street Podcast: 2019 Session Preview

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.

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2019 Legislative Handbook Series – An Indispensable Reference

The Department of Legislative Services has released its quadrennial Legislative Handbook Series, a deep and useful reference series that encapsulates nearly every issue of government at the state and local level. The series may be downloaded or viewed online for free at the links below: Legislative Handbook Series: Vol 1 – Legislators Handbook Vol 2 – Government Services Vol 3 – Revenue Structure Vol 4 – Budget Process Vol 5 – Personnel, Pensions & Procurement…

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Commission to Advance NextGen 9-1-1 Across Maryland Releases Final Report

Nationally,  the key underpinnings of the legacy 9-1-1 framework are based on the same wireline, analog, circuit-switched technology that was the foundation of the original 9-1-1 architecture in 1968. Aside from an enhanced data environment and the ability to support wireless and Internet telephony, the system has not significantly changed in more than 40 years. With advances in technology, the emergency communication networks built four decades ago are becoming less efficient, less technologically advanced and,…

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Preview the 2019 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 the year ahead – a great preparation document for county officials in advance of meetings with their local Delegations. Developed by the Department of Legislative Services, the 2019 Issue Papers are an annual staple for the Annapolis policy-inclined population.…

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This State Now Accepts Bitcoin for Tax Payments

While most governments are warning their residents against investing in cryptocurrency like Bitcoin, the state of Ohio seems to be embracing the concept.  Starting this week, businesses in Ohio are now permitted to settle tax payments using Bitcoin. Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency that is conducted on a public ledger, the "blockchain." Digitally transferred, it exists only online. Similar to gold, it can have monetary value while also being a commodity, but it’s still its own…

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Hold That Tweet! Mastering the Art of 21st Century Communication

Don't let that social media post get you in trouble. Panelists at the MACo Winter Conference session, "Hold That Tweet! Mastering the Art of 21st Century Communication," will help you successfully navigate the world of digital communication -- avoiding the legal and societal pitfalls along the way. Title: Hold That Tweet! Mastering the Art of 21st Century Communication Description: The right communication strategies can build a bridge between government officials and the public they serve.…

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FCC Proposal Threatens County Cable Franchise Fees

Proposed FCC Rule could cost counties millions in franchise fees by allowing cable companies to deduct the fair market value of public benefits, such as setting aside channels for county council or school board broadcasts, from the fees.  The potential effects of the order are vast. Nationwide there are approximately 1,500 public, education, and government (PEG) stations and 3,000 channels that could be impacted. From NACo County News: In some smaller jurisdictions, [Mitsuko] Herrera noted,…

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Montgomery County Council Defers Acting on Small Cell Bill

The Montgomery County Council's vote on a zoning text amendment that would have allowed the attachment of small cells to existing utility poles in residential areas was called off this week as members could not agree on amendments. From The Washington Post: Montgomery Council President Hans Riemer (D-At Large) and Montgomery Executive Isiah Leggett (D) said they had tried to balance the needs of the wireless industry to expand broadband capacity with residents' concerns that…

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