There is obviously a lot to say about this issue, but my best advice to constituents is to sign up for the Montgomery County vaccine email distribution list here.
Emails from the County should keep you informed about what Phase of the vaccine roll-out we are in; how to register for a vaccine; and where to go. Again, there is a lot to say about this issue but that is my suggestion as a starting point.
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.
2021 Legislative Session
The 442nd session of the Maryland General Assembly convenes today. Every year I send a similar message to mark the start of the legislative session and describe the bills I plan to introduce. But this year I must also acknowledge that the General Assembly is convening at an unprecedented time as we continue a public health pandemic; an ensuing economic recession; and ongoing concerns about our democracy. These are realities we must keep in mind as we embark on our work for the people of Maryland.
I am currently sponsoring seven pieces of legislation. That said, I think the most significant legislation we will pass this session will be related to COVID-19 response and recovery including legislation reforming our Unemployment Insurance system; a housing package; aid for small businesses; broadband expansion; and taking advantage of the lessons we have learned about telework. Although I am not the primary author of these bills, their development and advancement will be a part of my work these next 90 days.
Moreover, there are numerous other issues in which we will be engaged including police reform; the local legislation I help oversee as chair of the 24 member Montgomery County House Delegation; and my work in overseeing and approving the state budget as the Chair of the Transportation & Environment Subcommittee of Appropriations. It will be a busy legislative session.
Although it will be difficult for constituents to visit Annapolis this year, one silver lining of the pandemic is that much of our legislative work will be more accessible through more web streaming of our activities; the ability to submit testimony remotely; and the possibility of testifying virtually. Please visit the Maryland General Assembly website to keep track of our meetings and activities or just reply to this email with any questions.
The legislation I am sponsoring includes:
Again, these issues and bills are just a small sampling of how my time will be spent over the next 90 days. I will be sure to keep you posted but please contact me anytime. The office phone number is 301-858-3649 and my email address is Delegate.M.Korman@house.state.md.us (or just reply to this email to reach me).
I highlighted the legislation I "pre-filed" above, but you can read all of the other bills that have been introduced in the House already by visiting here. There is also a Senate button you can click on. Further legislation will be introduced during the first weeks of the legislative session.
I also chair the 24-member Montgomery County House Delegation to Annapolis. Among our work is considering bills that only affect Montgomery County (and some bills that implicate Montgomery and Prince George's County bicounty agencies). Because of the pandemic, the Delegation worked through December and over the holidays to advance almost all of our bills through the Delegation process and on to the regular General Assembly process. You can review those bills and their status here.
There is always a great deal of interest regarding the Governor's proposed Public Private Partnership to widen I-270 and I-495 with toll lanes. The Hogan Administration recently received proposals from three short-listed teams in response to a Request for Proposal (RFP) for a so-called Phase Public Private Partnership Agreement, an arrangement by which the state will hire a Project Developer to guide Phase 1 of the road widening which includes the American Legion Bridge; I-495 to I-270; the Spur; and I-270 north to I-70 (although the area north of I-370 is far behind the rest because environmental review has not begun. You can read the RFP and related information here. You can read some of my concerns with the process and project here.
A significantly growing complaint in many parts of the district has been increased overhead helicopter noise. Congressmembers Jamie Raskin, David Trone, and several area colleagues requested that the Government Accountability Office (GAO) review the issue and the GAO recently issued its report.
Montgomery County is decoupled from the statewide changes to what is open and what is not to deal with the public health crisis. You can track the current rules in Montgomery County here. The County's COVID-19 data dashboard can be viewed online as well. There is also a state dashboard online.
I also recommend tracking state vaccine data here:
And you can see our progress in the national and international context here.
Many of you are trying to navigate the state's unemployment system, which was simply not equipped for the volume or complexity of the current caseload. The Department of Labor website (https://www.dllr.state.md.us/employment/uibenefits.shtml) is your entryway for unemployment benefits. If you are having trouble with unemployment and live in District 16, you can fill out our District 16 constituent service Google form for assistance here. The District 16 Team has been in regular contact with the Department of Labor to try and resolve individual cases.
If you know of a District 16 resident who merits recognition or condolences or an upcoming event, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.