Del. Alice Cain reflects on session, Speaker who shared their district

Del. Alice Cain of Annapolis, one of eight Democrats to take a seat held by a Republican, reflects on her first session and on the death of Speaker Mike Busch, who shared the two-member district with her. “I was thinking how much I’m going to miss him, how much the State House is going to miss him, and how much the community of Annapolis is going to miss him,” she said. “It was great to see him in action here myself.”

More restrictions put on power of Board of Public Works by House bill

Gov. Larry Hogan’s recent attempts to acquire land from the federal government for a Redskins stadium and to expand the Baltimore-Washington Parkway have led to yet another effort to limit the power of the Board of Public Works made up of the governor, comptroller and state treasurer.  The bill passed the House of Delegates Thursday in a party-line vote after lengthy floor debate.  

Dundalk High School under construction (Photo by sugargliding on Flickr)

Big jump in school construction funding stalled in Senate

Time is ticking down on the largest school construction bill in Maryland history.With just five days until the end of the General Assembly session April 8, the Senate has yet to pass HB727, dubbed the Build to Learn Act, which would provide an additional $2.2 billion for school construction, divvying up the bulk of the funding to the state’s largest counties.

Prescription Drug Affordability Board advances in House

Maryland delegates are pushing back against high prescription drug costs, but their proposal stops short of setting drug price caps for all Marylanders.Instead, the House of Delegates advanced a proposal Tuesday that will limit what the state will pay for the prescription drugs of state and local government workers and institutions.

Rural legislators lose fight on pesticide ban

Rural delegates fought a losing battle on the House floor Thursday against banning a pesticide that has been linked to autism, ADHD and childhood cancers. Lawmakers from the state’s rural areas said banning the commonly-used pesticide would be a blow to farmers who rely on it to grow their crops and put them at a competitive disadvantage.

House advances $46.7 billion budget

State support for public schools will exceed $7 billion for the first time in a budget plan given preliminary approval Wednesday by the Maryland House of Delegates. The $46.7 billion state budget bill for fiscal 2020 also includes a 3% general salary increase for state workers (5% for law enforcement officers) effective July 1.