Study finds that controversial state education grant program used by those already in private schools; Gonzales poll finds bipartisan support for more funding for education, not so for private scholarships; General Assembly to tackle fixing of medical marijuana program; young fan pays homage to Justice Ginsburg; U.S. Rep. Raskin to attend inauguration, but U.S. Rep. Brown won’t; Baltimore City has an informal pipeline to raise up black women politicians; David Trone mulls running for Montgomery County exec, while Councilman Leventhal to take public financing for his 2018 exec race; and Somerset mayor resigns from country club over Obama snub.
Hundreds rally in Bowie to keep the ACA; Sen. Brochin hopes to curb developers’ campaign dollars to Baltimore County candidates; Del. Morhaim calls proposed fracking regulations “wholly inadequate;” School Facilities Commission won’t make recommendations but opts for “broad consensus;” I-81 work on shaking ground with battle over transportation bill; House Judiciary Committee down three members; Annapolis lawmakers shaken by house fire that killed six children: Many know their mother; shore’s League of Women Voters to meet over 2017-18 agenda; lawmakers concerned over Trump’s effect on state once he becomes president; Baltimore U.S. attorney could be No. 2 in Trump Justice Department; and worker charged with stealing from PAC.
Gov. Hogan announces sweeping, bipartisan anti-crime package targeting serial rapists, drunken driving and victims’ rights; Arundel County Exec Schuh supports face-off of new Frederick Douglass statue with old Taney statue on State House grounds; Nick Mosby nominated for vacant delegate seat; Baltimore City, U.S. Justice Department roll out 227-page consent decree on police reforms prior to Trump inauguration; Howard County school super sues her school board; and Mikulski join JHU.
Amid calls for bipartisanship, opening day in Annapolis has a rocky start with Sen. Gladden’s and Del. Vaughn’s resignations; Vaughn cites health reasons, but FBI probe may be related; Gladden, who has MS, cites health reasons; Gov. Hogan says he won’t engage in partisan warfare during the session but Speaker Busch and Senate President Miller seem more combative; reorganized Legislative Black Caucus comes on strong with 5-point plan including equal funding for HBCUs; court delay in decision on state bail decision means reform will founder; state energy program saved $1.8 billion for consumers; U.S. Rep. Harris, a possible candidate to head NIH, meets with Prez-elect Trump; and Montgomery golf club may snub soon-to-be ex Prez Obama over Israel stand.
The Maryland legislature formally convenes at noon today, opening the doors on a wide revenue gap, partisan bickering, some vacant seats and a federal corruption probe that could cast a pall over the State House; but it’s business as usual for Atty. Gen. Frosh as he introduces two bills to curb the rising costs of prescription meds; Gov. Hogan seeks to cap rising college tuition costs; state Sen. Gladden not expected at opening day; new delegate named to fill Montgomery vacancy; man who would be delegate still on Pugh payroll after charges; former Prince George’s delegate pleads guilty to taking bribes, most while a councilman; Baltimore County exec digs in heels over school construction funding; U.S. Rep. Raskin gets seat on Judiciary; U.S. Rep. Brown gets tapped for Armed Services panel; and Dem leaders to rally in Bowie for ACA.
It’s a tough time to be a member of the House of Delegates: Del. Morhaim has been removed from a key committee assignment by Speaker Busch, this following reports of his consulting a medical marijuana company and questions of disclosure; Del. Impallaria was convicted of DWI; the replacement for Del. Robinson won’t be sworn in after charges of bundling campaign contributions to Catherine Pugh; and charges against an unnamed delegate expected in the federal probe that hit Prince George’s liquor system; a new delegate was nominated for District 20; trial opens over fairness in funding of state’s historically black colleges; Gov. Hogan makes cabinet changes; councilman proposes term limits in Baltimore City; and taking a cue from Sen. Cardin, Secretary of State Kerry apologizes for “lavender scare.”
Lawmakers and Gov. Hogan brace for the new General Assembly session, which starts on Wednesday, turning their eyes toward budget problems but looking back at failed initiatives from last year that may have a shot in 2017; court delays actions of bail bond system reform; Head Start funding lags in Maryland; trial starts on Maryland funding disparities at historically black colleges; in wake of Prince George’s liquor scandal, Hogan calls for overhaul of state system; Trump inauguration to draw Marylanders to celebrate, protest; and memorial service set for late Baltimore Councilman T. Bryan McIntire.
Howard Exec Kittleman says he’ll veto sanctuary proposal; Gov. Larry Hogan proposes jobs plan that offers tax incentives for manufacturers; former U.S. Atty. Gen. Holder joins legal challenge to state’s bail bond standards; activists head to court over state’s allowing juveniles to serve life sentences; renewable energy proponents urge lawmakers to override Hogan veto on bill to increase its use; citing improved habitat, foundation happily gives Chesapeake Bay a C minus; federal charges for four in liquor board influencing scheme; and citing attorney general’s urging, Arundel says it will test more rape kits.
Gov. Hogan to continue annual school construction Begathon, over opposition of General Assembly, Treasurer Kopp; state ACLU challenges state parole system’s handling of juveniles sentenced to life; Gonzales poll finds Hogan approval number climbs to 74%; tourism revenue in Maryland jumps 3.5%; Frederick schools won’t give state student info until it proves computer system is safe; Del. Impallaria found guilty of DWI; Del. Korman won’t seek Montgomery Council seat; former Del. Carter heads city Civil Rights division; and despite concern about a President Trump, U.S. Rep. Cummings stays hopeful.
Gov. Hogan lays out his legislative agenda for the environment, intends to spend $65 million to promote green industries. Bay Foundation chief cautiously optimistic; state legislative panel puts hold on fracking regulations to allow General Assembly to consider ban; Attorney General Frosh calls for testing of more rape kits, consistency among police agencies; Maryland schools drop to No. 5 in Education Week review; Maryland lawmakers consider making ballot access contingent upon presidential candidate’s release of tax returns; and two reps and a senator: Jamie Raskin, Anthony Brown and Chris Van Hollen sworn into Congress.