FRANCHOT BACKS ED REFORM, NOT MANDATED BLUEPRINT: Like several of the nine Democratic candidates for governor, Comptroller Peter Franchot makes improving K-12 education part of his standard stump speech. But, reports Len Lazarick for Maryland Reporter, Franchot refuses to even mention the Kirwan Commission and the Blueprint for Maryland’s Future the legislature enacted over the governor’s veto that establishes massive changes for public schools and pumps billions more into education.
300 NEW COVID CASES REPORTED SUNDAY: The positivity rate reached over 2% as over 300 new COVID-19 cases are reported Sunday, according to the Maryland Health Department. Doctors said the new cases are fueled by the Delta variant targeting those who are unvaccinated, WJZ-TV reports.
LAWMAKERS CONTINUE TO PRESS HOGAN ON COVID DATA: Top lawmakers on the House Health and Government Operations Committee continue to press the Hogan administration for data on who is getting COVID-19 in the state — and who is dying from the virus. A spokesman for Gov. Larry Hogan (R) said recently that every COVID-19 death in Maryland during the month of June was attributable to the state’s unvaccinated population, Hannah Gaskill reports for Maryland Matters.
HEALTH DEPT WEIGHS ENDING BILLING FLEXIBILITY: Caregivers and family of those with disabilities are worried the Maryland Department of Health may be about to end a provision early that gives them more flexibility in how services are billed for and delivered during the coronavirus pandemic, Hallie Miller reports in the Sun.
HEALTH DEPT. TEAMS WITH BLACK SALONS TO PUSH COVID VAXX: In partnership with Kaiser Permanente, the Maryland Department of Health launched a program Friday to promote COVID-19 vaccine awareness to Black and Hispanic communities through local hair salons and barbershops, Hannah Gaskill of Maryland Matters reports.
SKEPTICS CHALLENGE COVID VAXX CLINIC: A Covid-19 vaccine clinic in Baltimore City is facing the hard challenge of continued skepticism despite the fact that the Delta variant is surging, writes Timothy Dashiell for Baltimore Brew.
STATE DELEGATE AMONG NOMINEES FOR ARUNDEL COURT: The governor is currently considering nominees that include a state delegate, an assistant state’s attorney, a magistrate and an Annapolis attorney to fill the vacant Anne Arundel Circuit Court judicial position, Hope Kahn reports for the Annapolis Capital.
MIZEUR PICKS UP ENDORSEMENTS IN RACE AGAINST HARRIS: Democratic congressional candidate Heather Mizeur has picked up several new endorsements in the 2022 race to take on U.S. Rep. Andy Harris, R-Md.-1st, the Easton Star Democrat reports.
***Baltimore County Executive John A. Olszewski, Jr. invites the Baltimore County Business Community to a briefing on the disparity study the county recently completed. The briefing will be held virtually on Wednesday, July 28 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Please use this link to register: https://www.tfaforms.com/4919137 For more information, please email: MWBE@Baltimoremd.gov The study examined contracts the county awarded to willing M/WBEs. Mason Tillman Associates, the consultant who completed the study, will present the findings from the disparity study and the county will provide information on the enhancements to the M/WBE Program.***
FRANCHOT PARTS WITH CONSULTANTS: As Democratic candidates for governor begin to staff up and hire consultants, Maryland Matters has learned that Comptroller Peter Franchot recently parted company with two consultants he’s worked with for several years. One team of consultants was quickly picked up by another candidate for governor, former attorney general Doug Gansler, Josh Kurtz reports.
MORELLA HONORED AS COMMUNITY HERO: Former Maryland Congresswoman Connie Morella, a Republican in a deep-blue district praised for her bipartisan spirit, was honored Wednesday with a community hero award by Big Train baseball, a Bethesda-based collegiate team that feeds into the pros, Glynis Kazanjian reports for WTOP-FM.
JUSTIS CONNECTION SEEKS TO LINK BLACK LAWYERS TO THOSE IN NEED: After three years of laying the groundwork while working other jobs and “bootstrapping,” Kisha A. Brown launched Justis Connection earlier this year, an effort to connect underserved people to Black attorneys. She has built a database of about 950 Black lawyers across multiple disciplines in Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C. — and she hopes to have national listings well under way by the end of the year, Josh Kurtz writes for Maryland Matters.
B’MORE BLACK TRANSGENDER ACTIVISTS SEEK MORE SUPPORT: Black transgender activists rallied Saturday at War Memorial Plaza in Baltimore, calling on city leaders to provide better access to health care, employment, foster care, substance use support, and housing for members of the transgender, lesbian, gay, bisexual, queer and nonbinary communities, Clara Longo de Freitas reports for the Sun.
PRINCE GEORGE’S BEGINS COUNCIL REDISTRICTING: Changes in the Prince George’s County population could realign thousands of residents into new legislative districts. The exact number affected in the nine county council districts remains undetermined, but Prince George’s Redistricting Commission’s goal will be to equally distribute the population and also avoid splitting precincts in a particular neighborhood, William Ford reports for the Washington Informer.
AUGUST HEARING TO STOP ANNAPOLIS MAIL-IN BALLOT PLAN: A hearing is set for next month in a lawsuit brought by two Republican political candidates who are suing to stop Annapolis from mailing ballots to all registered voters in its upcoming primary and general elections, Brooks DuBose reports for the Capital Gazette. Herb McMillan, a candidate for county executive, and George Gallagher, a Ward 6 Annapolis candidate, filed the complaint to prevent the city from implementing the vote-by-mail system.
EX-ARUNDEL COUNCILMAN ARRESTED AT MARCH FOR HR 1: Daryl Jones, a former Anne Arundel County councilman, was arrested Thursday during a protest in Washington, D.C., supporting election overhaul legislation, Donovan Conaway reports for the Capital Gazette. Jones, a Democrat who lives in Severn, said over 50 people gathered at the Supreme Court and marched to the Senate building to protest the stalling of HR 1, also known as “The For the People Act.”
SOCIAL JUSTICE WEEKEND IN ARUNDEL: The Social Justice Celebrity Charity Weekend Event, meant to spread awareness of social justice through sports and to raise funds for around a dozen charities, concluded with a match-up between members of the Anne Arundel County Fire and Police Departments followed by a second game featuring former NBA stars and other celebrities, Brooks DuBose reports for the Capital Gazette.
‘SOVEREIGN CITIZENS’ SQUAT AT FALLS ROAD MANSION: A group of at least five self-proclaimed sovereign citizens overran a Fall Road mansion that is on the market last month, attempting what one squatter described as a “sovereign acquisition,” according to Baltimore County police reports. Taylor DeVille of the Sun reports on their activity and the occurrences of such action around the country.