State Roundup: More insured Marylanders means savings for state; state faces public defender shortage

State Roundup: More insured Marylanders means savings for state; state faces public defender shortage

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STUDY: AS MORE MARYLANDERS INSURED, SAVING STATE MILLIONS: Maryland has saved nearly half a billion dollars in hospital costs over the last 15 years thanks to expanded insurance coverage. The estimate comes from medical advocacy group Maryland Healthcare for All!, which will present its findings to the Maryland General Assembly later this week. Over the 15 years, the state reduced the number of uninsured from 13% to 6%. Scott Maucione/WYPR-FM.

MARYLAND WRESTLES WITH SHORTAGE OF PUBLIC DEFENDERS: To meet new national standards for workloads, the Maryland Office of the Public Defender calculated in its 2023 annual report that it would need to increase the number of attorneys who represent clients in adult criminal cases alone more than threefold. That’s not counting assistant public defenders in specialized divisions as well as paralegals, investigators and social workers. Dylan Segelbaum/The Baltimore Banner.

WHAT ARE NEXT STEPS TOWARD AN ORIOLES DEAL?: Neither the office of Gov. Wes Moore nor the Maryland Stadium Authority responded to questions on Monday about the status of the negotiations — including whether they are happening at all. The Baltimore Orioles didn’t have anything to say publicly either. But it’s believed the parties have continued talking about what’s next and whether the agreement can be salvaged or if they need to go back to the drawing board. Pamela Wood/The Baltimore Banner.

POLL: MARYLANDERS GENERALLY OPTIMISTIC: On the eve of a new year — and a new General Assembly session — Maryland voters are generally optimistic about the future, though many have jitters about inflation and crime in Baltimore. They are also looking to their government leaders for bold solutions — though it isn’t clear whether there’s the political will or the desire by taxpayers to pay for the initiatives that may be needed to move the state’s economy forward. Josh Kurtz/Maryland Matters.

MO CO OFFICIALS SEE TRANSIT CUTS AS A BLOW TO BUS SERVICE: Montgomery officials have expressed concern over proposed cuts outlined by Maryland’s secretary of transportation, which could mean a hit of more than $17 million to Montgomery County’s Ride On bus service. The cuts would represent a “massive blow” to the county bus service, newly-elected County Council President Andrew Friedson said Monday. Kate Ryan/WTOP-FM.

JAWANDO LAUNCHES PROGRESSIVE PAC; ELRICH TO SEEK RE-ELECTION: Montgomery County Councilmember Will Jawando (D-At-large) has launched a new federal political action committee to support progressive candidates. County Executive Marc Elrich (D) confirmed he will run for a third term in 2026. Ginny Bixby/MoCo 360.

BA CO COUNCIL TO REVISIT IG AMENDMENTS, WHICH HAVE BEEN AMENDED: The Baltimore County Council Tuesday will debate whether an advisory board for the county inspector general is a matter of checks and balances or an infringement on the office’s effectiveness and independence. County Council Chairman Julian Jones, a Democrat, who has twice been the subject of an IG investigation, is proposing the advisory board. John Lee/WYPR-FM.

  • Jones has amended the inspector general amendments he secretly tried to get approved last week, while lamenting that he’s the victim of a “tremendous amount of misinformation and disinformation being spread and reported.” Mark Reutter/Baltimore Brew.

B’MORE $8 BILLION HOMES PLAN WOULD GET PRIVATE DONATIONS: A coalition of Baltimore faith and business leaders and Mayor Brandon Scott’s administration Monday unveiled an estimated $8 billion plan to revive thousands of vacant and abandoned homes funded by the city, state and private donors. The money would be put toward rehabilitating, demolishing and beautifying at least 35,700 vacant and “at-risk” properties, empty lots and occupied homes across Baltimore, including in neighborhoods that typically don’t see much government investment. Hallie Miller/The Baltimore Banner.

ARRIE DAVIS, ASSOCIATE JUDGE ON COURT OF SPECIAL APPEALS, DIES AT 83: Arrie Wilson Davis, an associate judge on the Maryland Court of Special Appeals, died of a circulatory ailment Nov. 27 at Springwell Assisted Living in Mount Washington. He was 83. Jacques Kelly/The Baltimore Sun.

About The Author

Cynthia Prairie

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 newspaper, The Chester Telegraph. If you have additional questions or comments contact Cynthia at:

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