As I noted last week, the Governor's budget proposal has been released. The budget is the one bill the Maryland General Assembly is constitutionally required to pass each year and it has two major components:
On Monday, the General Assembly received the annual overview of the budget known as the fiscal briefing. You can watch the full briefing here.
Or read the presentation here.
As always, you can keep up with what I am doing by following me at @mkorman on Twitter or by clicking "Like" on Delegate Marc Korman on Facebook.
Last week, my first bill hearing took place on the Zero Emission Bus Transition Revision Act (HB 10), legislation that modifies the zero emissions bus transition bill from last year to assist the workforce. You can watch the hearing online.
I have introduced several more bills since my last newsletter that will soon be assigned for hearings:
Metro's General Manager, Paul Wiedefeld, has announced his departure later this year. Mr. Wiedefeld has a history of service in the transportation sector in Maryland, having run both the Maryland Transit Administration and BWI Airport before leading Metro. Running Metro is a difficult job and I think Mr. Wiedefeld brought needed credibility to the role when he began and helped secure dedicated funding for the system which is critical to maintaining its capital. Unfortunately, two events have clouded the end of Mr. Wiedefeld's tenure: COVID-19, which is obviously beyond Metro's control, and the issues with the 7000 series of railcars that are not currently running.
The Governor's final six year Consolidated Transportation Program was released with the budget last week. There is a lot to digest and, as noted above, the budget includes dedicated funding for Metro and a projected extension of Highway User Revenue. But one area of interest is how the budget deals with the proposed expansion of I-270 and I-495. Last year, the Governor's political action committee ran attack ads against me and others, claiming that five specific transportation projects (four roads and one transit line) would be cancelled unless the Governor's road expansion plans advanced. The plan have advanced, yet in this final budget of Governor Hogan's tenure, four of the five projects (three roads and one transit line) still receive zero funding. Moreover, the Governor's draft transportation budget had no funds set aside for the project Montgomery County Councilmembers said they had secured last summer. After the Department of Transportation was asked about this at multiple meetings and hearings, Page MTA-54 of the final budget sets aside $400,000 to begin developing a project.
Montgomery County is beginning to plan the North Bethesda Bus Rapid Transit line, a proposed connection from Montgomery Mall to either Grosvenor or White Flint Metro Stations. Click here to apply for the corridor advisory committee. Click here to sign-up for updates.
The Comptroller has announced a three month extension of the state income tax due date. The filing and payment deadline will be Friday, July 15, 2022.-----
Shout-out to District 16's Zoe Weiss, who testified in support of HB 49, Public Health - Emergency and Allergy Treatment - Nurse Practitioners legislation last week. You can watch Zoe's testimony starting at about nine minutes in of this video.
Congratulations to Bethesda's Laura Coyle on her reappointment to the Citizens Review Panel for Children.
Congratulations to Joan Kleinman, the long-serving District Director for Senator Van Hollen recently announced her retirement. Joan has been an incredible bridge between state officials and Senator Van Hollen. Speaking of which, Senator Van Hollen spoke at the Montgomery County Delegation last week, including about Joan. You can watch his remarks here, starting about 29 minutes into the meeting.
If you know of an upcoming District 16 event or a District 16 resident who merits recognition or condolences, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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