September Update: A Strong Ticket
The November general election is fast approaching. The deadline to register to vote is October 18. Early voting is October 27 through November 3. The deadline to request a mail-in ballot--and there will once again be drop boxes throughout our area--is November 1. And election day is November 8.
I am excited to vote for the state candidates leading my party's ticket this November: Wes Moore for Governor (and Aruna Miller for Lieutenant Governor); Anthony Brown for Attorney General; and Brooke Lierman for Comptroller. I am not only excited to vote for them, but to actually work with them for the next four years as we implement the Blueprint for Maryland's Future to support our students and schools; ensure transportation options that focus on safely moving people; fulfill our ambitious clean energy and other environmental goals; make sure government is working to make life a little easier for our residents, whether they are struggling with a health challenge, having difficulty with their bills, or something else; and to do it all in a transparent and accessible way for our residents.
The Humane Society Legislative Fund for Maryland scores legislators on their support for animals. I was pleased to receive 100% this year. You can review the scorecard to see what they evaluated here.
The state has issued its fiscal year 2022 (the year that ended June 30, 2022) close-out report. You can read it here.
The top line is that there is an "unassigned" budget surplus of $1.121 billion. This is after an $870 million transfer from the surplus to specified uses: particularly bringing the Rainy Day Fund up to 10% and a construction project fund. That process is part of a "revenue volatility" policy put in place to avoid appropriating capital gains revenue that never materializes.
This is all positive for the state's finances and represents both the benefits of federal stimulus during COVID and a strong underlying economy, even as some of our neighbors suffer and the cost for important goods is too high. But the Bureau of Revenue Estimates expects growth to slow in the near term and warns of stubborn and persistent inflation, as well as how much of the revenue is from capital gains which can be erratic (and why we have the revenue volatility policy referenced above).
The Purple Line continues to be an issue of great concern to our residents. Construction is currently scheduled to continue until 2026. The Transportation, Land Use, and Public Safety Committee of the Montgomery County Delegation--a committee chaired by District 16's own Sara Love--held a briefing on the pedestrian challenges related to the construction work. You can view it here.
Five Metro stations recently changed their names, including White Flint converting to North Bethesda. Read about it in the Washington Post.
The Maryland Department of Transportation has issued their six year draft Consolidated Transportation Program. This will be the subject of a public meeting in Montgomery County on Tuesday October 11 at 7pm at the Montgomery County Council building. You can read the draft plan here.
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.