HEALTH CARE SUBSIDY ARRIVES FOR YOUNG ADULTS: Maryland’s state and local leaders came together Thursday to urge young adults between the ages of 18-34 to take advantage of a new state subsidy that is designed to make health insurance more affordable, Bryan Renbaum writes for Maryland Reporter. The officials spoke at a news conference that was sponsored by the Maryland Citizens’ Health Initiative and was held at the Ellicott City 50+ Center.
KAISER STEPPING DOWN FROM HOUSE WAYS AND MEANS: Del. Anne R. Kaiser (D-Montgomery) announced via a short Facebook post Thursday night that she is stepping down as chair of the powerful House Ways and Means Committee, Josh Kurtz reports for Maryland Matters. Kaiser said she had been selected to establish and lead a new Public Leadership Institute and expand her teaching role at the University of Maryland School of Public Policy.
FLOODING INUNDATES METRO AREAS: In the area around Baltimore City, Baltimore County and Anne Arundel County, two to four feet of inundation will be possible this weekend, leading to the greatest coastal flooding impacts since Hurricane Isabel in 2003, WBFF’s Fox 45 Weather Authority Storm Team reports.
- The flooding will be caused by windy conditions on the Chesapeake Bay through Friday and Saturday, Christine Condon and Billy Jean Louis report for the Sun.
REPORT: POULTRY REGULATORS ARE FAILING: A new report from the Washington based Environmental Integrity Project is finding that Maryland agencies charged with regulating the Eastern Shore’s giant poultry industry are failing in their efforts to protect Chesapeake Bay tributaries, Joel McCord observes for WYPR.
- Operations produce more than 600 million pounds of chicken manure, but the report found that despite the industry’s large environmental footprint, state oversight is too minimal and ineffective at protecting water quality, Laura Steward reports for Baltimore Fishbowl.
LAWMAKERS CALL FOR IMPROVEMENTS TO UNEMPLOYMENT APP: Maryland’s unemployment app needs an upgrade to allow users to file for first-time benefits over smart phones, Bruce DePuyt reports on lawmaker comments for Maryland Matters. More than 600,000 out-of-work Marylanders and 5,300 employers have downloaded the app since its launch.
COMMENTARY: PUBLIC INFORMATION LAWS NEED SERIOUS REFORM: Open government proponent J.H. Snider writes that his own request for information on cyber school options during the pandemic shows that the Maryland Public Information Act is broken when it comes to allowing politically sensitive information to become public, his commentary in Maryland Matters states.
LOCAL HEALTH OFFICERS TURNING OVER UNDER PANDEMIC PRESSURES: The firing of Harford County health officer Dr. David Bishai underscores the pressures that local health directors are facing during the pandemic, reports Hallie Miller for the Sun. The public bodies who terminated him won’t speak publicly about the matter, but Miller’s interview with Bishai shows disagreements over Covid measures, and it followed two other Maryland health officers stepping down in as many months, citing political hurdles, aspects of the situation that were beyond their control, and even threats against their lives.
MOCO BOARD REQUIRES VACCINATION TO ATTEND PUBLIC MEETINGS: The Montgomery County Planning Board will require proof of vaccination against COVID-19 to attend meetings when in-person meetings resume, Caitlyn Peetz reports for Bethesda Beat. A notice posted on the board’s website says the public will be able to again attend meetings starting Nov. 4, provided they have been vaccinated.
HOGAN HAS NOT RULED OUT A PRESIDENTIAL RUN: Speaking with “CBS Mornings” on Thursday, Gov. Larry Hogan said he is focused on his remaining days as governor of Maryland, John Patti reports for WBAL News Radio. When asked if would be fair to say that he is “exploring” the idea, he said it would not be fair to say that, but he has not ruled out a run.
COMMENTARY: STEPPING UP TO BRING REFORM: Raymond Daniel Burke, a Baltimore native and shareholder in a downtown law firm, remembers Ted Venetoulis’ early days in politics and his own experience as a poll worker for him, he writes in commentary for the Sun. “He always sustained the mind of the reformer. The county was better for his time in office, and all of us who knew him are much better for having been part of the chance he took in 1974 to try and bring about change,” Burke stated.