Archive | Hot Topics

Every GOP budget cut clobbered by Dems

March 26, 2014

Republican legislators applied their usual persistence in trying to trim the Maryland budget Wednesday and were rewarded with their usual result: Every one of the dozen amendments they offered to reduce spending were defeated by overwhelming Democratic majorities. [...more]

Annapolitics Blog, Budget, General Assembly, Hot Topics, News, Pensions Comments (7)

Dueling bills aim to help illegal immigrants or to punish them

March 12, 2014

State lawmakers are considering bills that would decide whether local police should help the federal government detain suspected illegal immigrants for deportation. Two delegates from opposite parties are advocating two completely different approaches to address how extensively local law enforcement agencies should cooperate with a federal program that identifies people for deportation as soon as they are arrested. [...more]

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Extra pension payments cut by Senate committee to balance budget

March 10, 2014

The Senate Budget Committee voted Friday to take $500 million over the next five years from extra payments into the state pension system to balance the budget this year and for the next four. [...more]

Budget, General Assembly, Hot Topics, News, Pensions, Pensions Comments (7)

$300 million pension payment on chopping block to balance Md. budget

March 7, 2014

Much or all of an annual $300 million extra payment into Maryland's pension system is on the chopping block as Senate budgeters seek to balance Gov. Martin O'Malley's $39 billion budget at a voting session Friday. [...more]

Budget, General Assembly, Hot Topics, News, Pensions, Pensions Comments (24)

Three bills seek to overhaul legislative redistricting process

March 3, 2014

Maryland’s controversial legislative redistricting is again the target of bills designed to overhaul the process and make it less partisan. Legislators are trying to introduce transparency and civic participation into the redistricting procedure, which now leaves the governor in control and the process wide open to political gerrymandering. [...more]

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Treasurer, comptroller urge senators to restore $100M cut in pension funding

February 27, 2014

In unusual joint testimony, Maryland State Treasurer Nancy Kopp and Comptroller Peter Franchot, chair and vice-chair of the state pension board, pleaded with Senate budgeters not to permanently cut $100 million in state payments to the retirement system. They said the cut proposed by Gov. Martin O'Malley had high long-term repercussions and undermined the state's credibility with bond rating agencies by reneging on promises made in 2011 pension reforms. [...more]

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Barry Rascovar: O’Malley’s latest pension grab

February 9, 2014

It takes quite a bit for the quiet, diplomatic State Treasurer, Nancy Kopp, to criticize her fellow Democrat, Gov. Martin O'Malley. But she gently laid it on the line in opposing O'Malley's $100 million budget cut for state pension contributions. "It's a question of trust," Kopp said [...more]

Budget, General Assembly, Hot Topics, News, Pensions, Pensions Comments (5)

State treasurer Kopp opposes O’Malley’s $100M cut in Md. pension contribution

February 2, 2014

State Treasurer Nancy Kopp told lawmakers Thursday that she opposed Gov. Martin O'Malley's proposed $100 million cut in the pension contribution, and said it would undermine trust by the state's bond rating agencies. "I think this is a very difficult thing to defend with the rating agencies," Kopp told the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Public Safety and Administration. [...more]

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Unions, pension board unhappy O’Malley cut $100M in promised payment to retirement fund

January 17, 2014

The largest unions representing state workers and public school teachers are upset at Gov. Martin O'Malley's decision to permanently cut $100 million from extra payments into the state pension system. The money came from additional employee salary deductions required by a 2011 pension reform, and was intended to help cure underfunding in the pension system. [...more]

Budget, Hot Topics, News, Pensions, Pensions Comments (4)

Pay raises for governor, legislators in the works, as revenues improve slightly

December 12, 2013

Salary hikes for Maryland's next governor, members of the General Assembly and other statewide officials elected next year are set to be decided next week by two compensation commissions specially appointed for this task. None of these officials have had pay hikes since 2006, and the legislature rejected recommendations from these same commissions four years ago to increase the salaries slightly. [...more]

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