State Roundup: Hogan signs cybersecurity reforms

State Roundup: Hogan signs cybersecurity reforms

Senate President Bill Ferguson, Gov. Larry Hogan and House Speaker Adrienne Jones gather Thursday to sign 105 bills into law. Screen capture from Governor's Office video.

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HOGAN SIGNS MAJOR CYBERSECURITY BILLS: A singular effort to protect Maryland’s local and state governments from increasingly common cyberattacks is coming after Gov. Larry Hogan signed a trio of cybersecurity preparedness bills into law Thursday. The bills and record investment follow a string of costly high-profile ransomware and other cyberattacks that temporarily crippled Maryland governmental bodies. Sam Janesch/The Baltimore Sun

  •  The package is the result of several years of effort to address the growing risks to state and local government computer systems. Sen. Katie Fry Hester and Del. Pat Young, D-Baltimore County, spearheaded the effort on the three bills to beef up cybersecurity efforts and centralize the state’s handling of information technology issues. The effort would include a modernization of state and local information technology systems. Bryan Sears/The Daily Record
  • In a year with a huge budget surplus, Maryland lawmakers approved roughly $570 million for cybersecurity and information technology upgrades in the legislative session that ended last month. That includes about $200 million for cybersecurity and nearly $334 million for information technology development projects. Brian Witte/Associated Press in the Cumberland Times-News

NICK MOSBY VIOLATED ETHICS LAW, BOARD SAYS: Baltimore City Council President Nick Mosby violated the city’s ethics ordinance by indirectly soliciting for a legal-defense fund that took donations from at least two city contractors, the city’s Board of Ethics said in a ruling Thursday. It ordered Mosby to stop accepting money from the fund. Emily Opilo/The Baltimore Sun

  • The decision is considered unprecedented for the four-member panel, which has been criticized in the past for meekness and for deciding cases behind closed doors. The board called on Mosby to require the fund to identify all of its contributors, amend his ethics disclosure statement and return donations obtained from controlled donors. Mark Reutter/Baltimore Brew
  • In its ruling, the board said when it found “prima facie” evidence of ethics violations, it offered Mosby the opportunity to settle the issue himself, but his lawyer declined to do so. Callan Tansill-Smith/WYPR
  • The state follows the same rules and they apply to State’s Attorneys like Marilyn Mosby, and her legal defense fund could face the same issues. Tim Swift/WBFF
  • After the ruling, Fox45 News points out it has been asking questions about the legal defense fund for almost a year, including asking Nick Mosby to commit to disclosing  donors — a question met with silence. Mikenzie Frost/WBFF

CONGRESSIONAL FUNDRAISING LARGEST IN TWO CONTESTED DISTRICTS: Candidates in competitive congressional races in Maryland are raising millions ahead of the July 19 primary, while Democratic incumbents in what are considered safe seats are using their fundraising power to support the party and its candidates elsewhere, Federal Election Commission filings show. Tatyana Monney/Capital News Service in The Daily Record

PRIMARY DEBATES: Please join Maryland Reporter’s Len Lazarick as he moderates the virtual online debates for the candidates for Maryland attorney general. Republicans Michael Peroutka and Jim Shalleck debate Tuesday, May 24, 7 p.m. Register here to get the link.Democrats Anthony Brown and Katie Curran O’Malley debate on Wednesday, May 25, 7:30 p.m. Register here. Josh Kurtz of Maryland Matters moderates the debate of Democratic comptroller candidates Tim Adams and Brooke Lierman Tuesday, May 31. Register here. Here’s the flyer. The League of Women Voters is the lead sponsor along with MarylandReporter.com, MarylandMatters.org, Maryland Nonprofits, Maryland Latinos Unidos and the University of Baltimore’s Schaefer Center for Public Policy, the online host.  

VA, MD CALL FOR FEDERAL INTERVENTION AT SUPREME COURT JUSTICE HOMES: The Republican governors of Virginia and Maryland, where the homes of Supreme Court justices have become the targets of protests, are demanding that Attorney General Merrick Garland step in. The two governors — both potential 2024 Republican presidential contenders — said the protests were something for President Biden’s Justice Department to address, citing a federal statute outlawing demonstrations intended to influence a judge’s pending decision. Laura Vozella, Erin Cox, Dan Morse/The Washington Post

  • Separately, 25 Republican attorneys general wrote to Garland, citing the same law and urging him to prevent protesters “from attempting to intimidate” the justices. Matthew Barakat and Sarah Rankin/The Washington Times

PUGH BREAKS PUBLIC SILENCE: Former Mayor Catherine Pugh has broken her silence since being released from jail, making her first public appearance at the 2022 AFRO High Tea in Baltimore at Martin’s West. She will step in as interim host of former Sen. Larry Young’s morning show on WOLB 1010 AM, and already has topics like Baltimore’s Black economy and digital equity at the top of her list. “You can talk about me- you can do whatever you want. But you can’t take God’s gifts that were given to me away from me,” Pugh said. Alexis Taylor/The Afro

SCOTT RESPONDS TO HOGAN AGAIN ON CRIME: Mayor Brandon Scott said the city is not going to change its crime-fighting strategy in the wake of a rise in non-fatal shootings that includes two mass shootings that left one person dead and eight wounded on Tuesday. “This is what got Baltimore to this place, every time there is a violent act, we switched, we switched we switched,” Scott told reporters. Robert Lang/WBAL-AM

HAGERSTOWN NEWSPAPER REDUCING PRINT DAYS: Responding to continued rapid shifts toward digital news consumption, The Herald-Mail print edition will switch to three-day-a-week publication schedule in July.  The Herald-Mail staff will continue to publish news seven days a week on its website. Jake Womer/The Hagerstown Herald-Mail

CONSTELLATION ENERGY REPORTS PROFITS AS STANDALONE COMPANY: Constellation Energy reported a $106 million profit in its first quarter since returning as a standalone, publicly traded company. Joanna Sullivan/Baltimore Business Journal

HOGAN HONORS FALLEN HEROES: Governor Larry Hogan delivered remarks Thursday at the annual Maryland State Police Fallen Heroes Ceremony at the Maryland State Police headquarters in Pikesville. The governor was joined by current and retired state troopers, and surviving family members of the fallen heroes. Baltimore Sun Media

About The Author

Meg Tully

megctully@gmail.com
http://MarylandReporter.com

Contributing Editor Meg Tully has been covering Maryland politics for more than five years. She has worked for The Frederick News-Post, where she reported during the General Assembly session in Annapolis. She has also worked for The (Hanover) Evening Sun and interned at Baltimore Magazine. Meg has won awards from the Maryland-Delaware-D.C. Press Association for her state and county writing, and a Keystone Press Award for feature writing from the Pennsylvania Newspaper Association. She is a graduate of Franklin & Marshall College in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. If you have additional questions or comments contact Meg at: megctully@gmail.com

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