State Roundup: Delegates push against Hogan’s ending of enhanced jobless benefits; Ehrlichs urge getting Covid vaccine

State Roundup: Delegates push against Hogan’s ending of enhanced jobless benefits; Ehrlichs urge getting Covid vaccine

The ribbon cutting ceremony for the new University of Maryland Capital Region Medical Center in Prince George’s County took place Tuesday. Governor's Office photo

EHRLICHS PUSH VACCINES IN NEW ANTI-COVID CAMPAIGN: Former Gov. Bob Ehrlich and former first lady Kendel Ehrlich are participants in the state’s campaign to urge Marylanders to get vaccinated against the novel coronavirus, writes Bryan Renbaum for Maryland Reporter.

DELEGATES PUSH AGAINST HOGAN ENDING ENHANCED JOBLESS BENEFITS: Some Maryland delegates pushed back Tuesday against the governor’s recent decision to end expanded unemployment benefits without evidence that it would lead to job gains, Elizabeth Shwe writes in Maryland Matters. “I don’t disagree that there are more jobs available; I don’t disagree that there are challenges in getting people into those jobs…but there doesn’t seem to be any behavioral economics or macroeconomic analysis that suggests that this decision is going to help people get into those jobs,” Del. Lorig Charkoudian (D-Montgomery) said during a House Economic Matters Committee briefing on the issue.

STAFF DEFENDS HOGAN’s ENDING JOBLESS BENEFITS PROGRAM: Members of Gov. Larry Hogan’s administration on Tuesday defended his decision to end federal unemployment programs two months early, an action that will cut benefits for several hundred thousand Marylanders this summer. Hogan’s chief legislative officer said the governor looked at factors including increasing vaccination rates, job growth and stories from business owners who say they can’t find people to hire, Alison Knezevich of the Sun reports.

OPINION: HOGAN’s DECISION SHORT-SIGHTED, CRUEL: In an op-ed for the Sun Sally Dworak-Fisher of the Public Justice Center and Benjamin Orr of the Maryland Center on Economic Policy opine that Gov. Hogan’s recently announced decision to end pandemic unemployment benefits “is not only shortsighted and arbitrary; it is contrary to research demonstrating that such benefits boost spending and do not cause people to refuse work. It is also cruel, depriving critical relief to those who need it the most.”

WHILE MTA ADVANCES ROAD WIDENING PLAN, PROTEST HELD: The Maryland Transportation Authority voted on Tuesday to advance Gov. Larry Hogan’s plan to widen portions of two Montgomery County highways and rebuild the American Legion Bridge. Shortly after the vote, a leading foe of the controversial project told a rally in Rockville that he and Rep. Anthony G. Brown (D-Md.) recently lobbied U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg to reject the governor’s plan, claiming it fails key equity and climate tests.

  • Local and state officials joined dozens of community members from various organizations outside First Baptist Church of Rockville on Tuesday to oppose a plan to widen interstates 270 and 495, Steve Bohnel of Bethesda Beat reports.

DEL. ATTAR HOPES TO REVIVE JUVIE DATABASE BILL: Del. Dalya Attar, who represents the district where an Israeli man was killed and three youths were charged with murder, drafted a bill that would create a public database for juvenile crimes. This, after a series of armed carjackings and other crimes being committed by young people. The legislation stipulated the juvenile’s identity would not be released; rather, it would allow the public to track how the case is handled and the outcome of it. Now, the delegate plans to bring the legislation back to the table, Alexa Ashwell of WBFF-TV reports.

2 STATE SENATORS DEMAND APOLOGY FOR REDFIELD: Two Maryland Senate Republicans demanded an apology Tuesday for former U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Dr. Robert Redfield from state Democrats for their comments earlier this year after Redfield said he believed the coronavirus escaped from a laboratory in China, Bryn Stole of the Sun reports.

HOSPITALS RETURNING TO NORMAL: Not only are COVID-19 hospitalizations in Maryland down to nearly the lowest levels of the entire pandemic, but the numbers of non-COVID-19 patients at hospitals are returning to pre-pandemic levels, some hospitals are reporting, Johanna Alonso reports in the Daily Record.

SUIT AGAINST GARRETT JUDGE CLAIMS SEX HARASSMENT: In a lawsuit filed in federal district court in Baltimore, a woman alleges that Garrett County Circuit Judge Raymond G. Strubin sexually assaulted and threatened to fire the now former courthouse employee if she denied him sexual favors, Steve Lash reports for the Daily Record. Loriann Ludwig, who served as jury commissioner and law librarian, said in court papers that the four years of harassment began after she ended a six-year consensual relationship with Strubin in 2015.

PG SCHOOLS TO OPEN FULLY IN FALL, WITH OPTIONS FOR K-6: Prince George’s County Public Schools will open in the fall with in-person learning five days a week but will offer a first-semester option of virtual instruction for students in kindergarten to sixth grade, under a plan announced Tuesday, Donna St. George of the Post reports.

B’MORE BUDGET LEAVES POLICE UNTOUCHED: The Baltimore City Council approved a $4.3 billion spending plan Tuesday, leaving a $555 million allocation for the city’s police department intact despite pleas from some members of the public to cut or eliminate spending on law enforcement, Emily Opilo of the Sun reports.

MOSBY ACTION CALLED PUNISHMENT OVER VOTE: Baltimore City Council President Nick Mosby let his prized security deposit alternatives (“Rhino”) bill go down in defeat, choosing not to try to override Mayor Brandon Scott’s veto. But it was not before, according to three members of the Council, he transmitted a not-so-veiled message to the person who, in his eyes, had tipped the scales against him, Mark Reutter reports for Baltimore Brew.

  • The Baltimore City Council adjourned Tuesday without taking up Mayor Brandon Scott’s veto of the bill that would have provided security deposit alternatives to renters, letting it stand. Scott vetoed the bill in May at the 11th hour. Though an overwhelming majority of the council voted for the bill in April, several council members have since changed course, Sarah Kim reports for WYPR-FM.

About The Author

Cynthia Prairie

cynthiaprairie@gmail.com
https://www.chestertelegraph.org/

Contributing Editor Cynthia Prairie has been a newspaper editor since 1979, when she began working at The Raleigh Times. Since then, she has worked for The Baltimore News American, The Chicago Sun-Times, The Prince George’s Journal and Baltimore County newspapers in the Patuxent Publishing chain, including overseeing The Jeffersonian when it was a two-day a week business publication. Cynthia has won numerous state awards, including the Maryland State Bar Association’s Gavel Award. Besides compiling and editing the daily State Roundup, she runs her own online news outlet, The Chester Telegraph. If you have additional questions or comments contact Cynthia at: cynthiaprairie@gmail.com

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