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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MACo: School Construction Incentive Act Needs More Input

MACo Legislative Director Kevin Kinnally yesterday testified in support with amendments on SB 551 School Construction Incentive Act of 2021 before the Senate Budget and Taxation Committee. SB 551 creates incentives for cost-efficient school buildings and long term operational efficiency. The bill, however, leaps to specific conclusions regarding the desirability of specific measurements and standards that are not yet a matter of consensus. From the MACo Testimony: The incentives SB 551 envisions are very sensible: expanding…

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MACo Raises Cost Concerns with Classroom Video Installation Bill

MACo Policy Associate Drew Jabin today submitted testimony to the House Ways and Means Committee in opposition to HB 715 Public Schools – Self-Contained Special Education Classrooms – Use of Video Recording Devices. This bill requires county boards of education to install video recording devices in every self-contained special education classroom. From the MACo Testimony: HB 715 would implement a costly, burdensome mandate - without accompanying State support - for school systems and county governments…

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MACo: Water Testing Strikes Right Balance

MACo Policy Associate Drew Jabin today submitted testimony to the House Environment and Transportation Committee in opposition to HB 636 School Buildings – Drinking Water Outlets – Elevated Level of Lead (Safe School Drinking Water Act). This bill would lower the threshold for the detectable lead in drinking water in schools, requiring remediation of fixtures if detected. From the MACo Testimony: Under a new law enacted in 2017, the Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE)…

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MACo Resists Costly Solar Mandate

MACo Policy Associate Drew Jabin today testified before the Senate Education, Health, and Environmental Affairs Committee in opposition to SB 330 State-Funded Construction and Major Renovation Projects - Solar Panels - Requirement. This bill would place a costly mandate on county governments to carry out new state policy to place the maximum number of solar panels on a roof as specified during new construction or major renovation projects. From the MACo Testimony: This bill, as written, represents…

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MACo Opposes Costly Mandate to Install Changing Facilities

On January 14, 2021, MACo Policy Associate Drew Jabin submitted written testimony to the House Health and Government Operations Committee to oppose HB 321 - Public Buildings - Changing Facilities - Requirements. This bill would impose a mandate on local governments to install changing facilities in public bathrooms. From the MACo Testimony: As a rule, MACo resists state policies that result in costly or burdensome local implementation. HB 321 would implement a costly mandate for…

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Interagency Commission on School Construction Launches New Website

To increase transparency and accessibility to its stakeholders, Maryland's Interagency Commission on School Construction has launched its new website, effective December 31, 2020. The IAC was established by the Board of Public Works to administer Maryland's Public School Construction Program and is chaired by State Superintendent of Schools, Karen Salmon. The IAC operates under the provisions of the Rules, Regulations, and Procedures for the Administration of the School Construction Program which are approved and amended…

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MD General Assembly Posts Pre-Filed Bill List

The Maryland General Assembly Senate and House pre-filed bill lists are now available on the General Assembly website. Although the list of pre-file bills are available, there is no bill text at this time. Currently, readers are able to view the bill title, sponsor, and committee assignment. As of today, there are 780 total House and Senate pre-filed bills and resolutions listed on the website. This will be updated to reflect updates on the General…

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Maryland Interagency Commission on School Construction – December 10, 2020 Agenda

Maryland's Interagency Commission on School Construction (IAC) was established by the Board of Public Works to administer Maryland's Public School Construction Program and is chaired by State Superintendent of Schools, Karen Salmon. The IAC operates under the provisions of the Rules, Regulations, and Procedures for the Administration of the School Construction Program which are approved and amended by the Board of Public Works. It meets once a month and the meetings are open to the…

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Preview the 2021 Session “Big Picture”

A compilation of Issue Papers previews major fiscal and policy issues facing the General Assembly in the year ahead. This year’s report also includes a special section devoted to issues resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. This resource is a handy guide to the top issues that your legislators will be tackling in 2021 – a great preparation document for county officials in advance of meetings with their local Delegations. Developed by the Department of Legislative…

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