The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has been felt across the entire state of Maryland. The public health concerns of this crisis and the effects on employment, housing, and small businesses are not something Marc takes lightly. Keeping everyone informed about vaccine rollout and resources for Marylanders is his top priority during this period of uncertainty. Due to the fast evolving nature of the situation, this page will be updated as consistently as possible, but the Montgomery County and the State of Maryland sites are the best places to go for up-to-date information.
COVID-19 is a fast evolving issue so please contact Marc anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org with questions.
Information can also be gained through your local community outlets. Be sure to watch the news and monitor social media for updates. The Maryland Department of Health’s social media can be found here for their Twitter and here for their Facebook. The Montgomery County Department of Health and Human Services’ Twitter can be found here. Checking in periodically with your primary care physician and local pharmacy is also an excellent way to stay updated on vaccine rollout status.
Regular COVID testing is a great way to make sure that you and those around you are staying safe. Testing information, including lists of sites and explanations of the process, can be found on both the Montgomery County and the State of Maryland websites.
Resources on Unemployment, Housing, and Small Businesses
Unfortunately, the COVID-19 pandemic has caused a sharp increase in unemployment. Marc and his office are dedicated to helping those who need assistance. The gateway to navigating unemployment issues is the Maryland Department of Labor website. You can find information on applying for Unemployment Insurance in Maryland here. If you are having trouble navigating the unemployment process, District 16 constituents can fill out this form so Marc and his office can help.
Since the beginning of the crisis, Marc has joined his colleagues in the General Assembly to respond to the outbreak. Prior to the early adjournment to the 2020 session, the legislature took immediate action and passed bills related to the present emergency. SB 1079 (State Budget - Revenue Stabilization Account Transfers - Coronavirus) provided the Governor with up to $50 million from the State’s Rainy Day Fund to help respond to the public health threat. COVID–19 Public Health Emergency Protection Act of 2020 (HB 1663) allowed the Governor to take specific actions to expand healthcare benefits and protect workers in response to the public health threat. These actions included requirements that the Maryland Department of Health cover the cost of COVID–19 testing, the vaccine and any associated costs not paid for by insurance or another third party. The legislation also included protections against price gouging, expanded telehealth services and expanded unemployment insurance benefits to workers who are temporarily out of work or quarantined due to the virus. The General Assembly has also created a Joint COVID-19 Response Legislative Workgroup to provide oversight and support to the Administration in the coming weeks and months. Their work can be monitored here.
The top legislative priority of the 2021 session was to address the devastating effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. The RELIEF Act (SB 496), passed by the General Assembly and signed by the Governor, focused on providing relief and assistance to those struggling with the economic impact of the pandemic. Among its highlights, the legislation increased the refundable earned income tax credit, exempted current unemployment insurance benefits from the income tax, and allowed small businesses to keep some short-term sales tax collections to bolster their bottom line. The legislation also converted numerous assistance loans to grants and targets needing funding to food banks, utility assistance, non-profits, restaurants, and the hospitality industry. Also included in the bill are additional funds to help businesses transition to telework, support state and local transportation departments to off-set their revenue losses, and resources for the Department of Labor to hire more staff to process unemployment claims.
By Authority of Friends of Marc Korman; Mark Brown, Treasurer