As I write this email, the federal government has reopened--at least for a few weeks. Federal government shutdowns are disruptive for the entire country, but has a disproportionate impact in Maryland, Montgomery County, and District 16. When I was out knocking on doors over the weekend, I heard from a lot of our neighbors about this issue. I wish I could promise that the situation in Washington will improve, but there does not seem to be much hope of that. But I do take some hope from the situation in Annapolis. Despite divided government--an excuse for polarization and paralysis that Washington, DC does not have--Annapolis still works. It may not always produce perfect outcomes and we have occasional partisan blow-ups, but overall the process works in Annapolis. Every year, we pass a balanced budget by the required deadline: the lights stay on; government services are delivered; and we move on to the next policy battle.
The legislature convened one week ago and the pace of work is picking up. Usually, the first few floor sessions are short and filled with formalities as committees have not yet reported out any legislation. But on our second day last week, we turned to overrides of two of the Governor's vetoes related to earned sick leave and higher education.
The 438th Session of the Maryland General Assembly convenes on January 10th. Although the legislature only meets for 90 days, as your Delegate I work year-round to represent each of you and our district. But the next 90 days will be a sprint of legislative productivity in Annapolis.