#MACoCon Recap: Dollars and Sense — Budgeting in a Post-COVID World

A panel of state and local fiscal leaders shared best practices for navigating an influx of federal recovery funds and tips for building resiliency for uncertain times ahead. From setting both short- and long-term priorities, to building infrastructure, to developing and sustaining projects, the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) presents an unprecedented opportunity for Maryland's 24 counties to strengthen their communities. As counties determine how to invest ARPA State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds to…

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Infrastructure: Virtual Event with President Biden, Wednesday 3pm

Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act Event with President Biden Wednesday, August 11 3:00-4:00PM ET County officials are invited to join a virtual event with President Biden on the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act on Wednesday, August 11 at 3:00PM ET. The bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act includes around $550 billion in new federal investment in America’s roads and bridges, transit, water infrastructure, resilience, broadband, and more. With the US Senate having just advanced…

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Fitch Affirms Maryland’s AAA Rating for $858 Million Bond Sale

Fitch Ratings affirmed Maryland’s AAA bond rating in advance of the upcoming competitive sale of State general obligation (GO) bonds. Fitch Ratings assigned a AAA rating to the following GO bonds, state and local facilities loan of 2021, second series: $540 million series A, tax-exempt bonds (competitive) $75 million series B, tax-exempt current refunding bonds (competitive) $116 million series C, taxable advance refunding bonds (negotiated, forward delivery) $126 million second series D, tax-exempt refunding bonds…

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Pandemic Spending Workgroup to Review MD Labor COVID Relief Programs

Maryland Department of Labor will provide details on COVID relief aid. The Comptroller's Workgroup on Pandemic Spending will hold its third meeting on Thursday, July 29, at 1:30 p.m. to continue its review of state and federal COVID-related spending. David McGlone, deputy secretary for the Maryland Department of Labor, will overview pandemic relief programs funded by state or federal dollars and administered by the department. As previously reported on Conduit Street, the Comptroller’s Workgroup on Pandemic Spending…

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Local Election Officials: Fund New Pollbooks 50/50 State/County

Today, the Maryland Association of Election Officials (MAEO) and the Montgomery County Board of Elections sent letters urging that a pending funding request for new electronic pollbooks follow the same 50/50 state/county funding split as other comparable equipment since 2001. The State Board of Elections plans to replace electronic pollbooks -- which are used to check in voters at polling places across the state -- in time for the 2022 election cycle. While the State…

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New Treasury FAQ: Addressing Violent Crime

The US Department of the Treasury today released a Frequently Asked Questions document that provides clarification on both general eligible uses of Recovery Funds and new eligible uses to increase public safety as outlined in the Biden-Harris Administration’s strategy to prevent and respond to gun crime and ensure public safety.  As previously reported on Conduit Street, the Recovery Fund, authorized under the American Rescue Plan Act, is providing $65.1 billion in direct, flexible aid to every county…

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Treasury Releases ARPA Reporting Requirements

Join the US Department of the Treasury for a briefing on new ARPA reporting requirements. The US Department of the Treasury today released Compliance and Reporting Guidance (Reporting Guidance) for the Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds (Recovery Fund), authorized by the American Rescue Plan Act. The guidance provides additional detail and clarification for counties’ compliance and reporting responsibilities under the Recovery Fund. Treasury will host the following briefings for counties regarding the new…

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Workgroup on Pandemic Spending to Hear From Commerce, DHCD

Representatives from Commerce, DHCD will provide details on COVID relief aid. The Comptroller’s Workgroup on Pandemic Spending will hold its second meeting on Wednesday, June 23, at 1:30 pm to continue its review of state and federal COVID-related spending. Sarah Sheppard, director of Education and Workforce for the Maryland Department of Commerce, and Robyne Chaconas, chief of staff for the Department of Housing and Community Development, will give overviews of pandemic relief programs, funded by…

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New Treasury ARPA FAQ: Broadband Spending

The US Department of the Treasury today released a revised Frequently Asked Questions document that provides clarifications on key questions related to the broadband provisions of the Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds' Interim Final Rule. As previously reported on Conduit Street, the Recovery Fund, authorized under the American Rescue Plan Act, is providing $65.1 billion in direct, flexible aid to every county in America, as well as other crucial investments in local communities. Today’s update…

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PSC Distributes $83 Million to Help Cover Past-Due Utility Bills

The Maryland Public Service Commission today allocated $83 million in state funding to utilities to help customers with delinquent bills, particularly arrearages incurred amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. The funding is part of the RELIEF (Recovery for the Economy, Livelihoods, Industries, Entrepreneurs, and Families) Act passed by the Maryland General Assembly earlier this year, and signed into law by Governor Larry Hogan. Maryland utilities report that thousands of residential customers are behind on their bills for…

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