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Politics

Wes Moore Actively Exploring 2022 Bid for Governor

Wes Moore, the Baltimore born and bred author, anti-poverty advocate and social entrepreneur, is actively contemplating seeking the Democratic nomination for governor in 2022. Moore earlier this month announced his intention to leave his job as CEO of the Robin Hood Foundation, a New York-based nonprofit with a broad portfolio, sometime this spring ― but did not say what he planned to do next. In a statement provided to Maryland Matters Tuesday evening, Moore said he was “seriously considering” a gubernatorial run.

Bills aim to limit implicit bias in Maryland judicial system

Maryland legislators introduced a pair of bills that could mandate police, judges, state’s attorneys and public defenders undergo implicit bias training in order to recognize and counteract any potential biases they may carry against specific groups. Implicit bias is the attitudes, or stereotypes that may unconsciously affect someone’s actions and decisions toward a person or group of people.

Read More: Baltimore Sun
Delegates Push to Repeal State Song, With its References to ‘Northern Scum’

Maryland Speaker Pro Tem Sheree Sample-Hughes grew up singing in the American Legion junior girls auxiliary. She used to sing the state’s song, “Maryland, My Maryland,” at events throughout the state. “Now I have a greater appreciation for what the lyrics truly mean,” Sample-Hughes (D-Lower Shore), told her colleagues Wednesday as she pressed for the song’s repeal as a state symbol. The song, which was composed during the Civil War by a Confederate sympathizer, James Ryder Randall, has enjoyed its status as a state symbol since 1939.

Maryland Bill Would Ban Chemical Conversion Of Plastic Into Fuel

Plastic pollution is an ever-growing problem for the entire planet. “If we don’t do anything by 2050, we will have the weight of three million blue whales worth of plastic in our ocean,” Maryland State Delegate Sara Love said. Much of it isn’t getting recycled. According to the EPA, only about 9% of plastic waste was recycled in 2018, and the demand to reuse that recycled material isn’t high. “Recycling only works if there are people who want to buy it to turn it into something new,” Kate Breimann, Director of Environment Maryland, said.

Read More: WJZ
Biden orders a review of US supply chains for vital goods

President Joe Biden signed an executive order Wednesday intended to boost manufacturing jobs by strengthening U.S. supply chains for advanced batteries, pharmaceuticals, critical minerals and semiconductors. The United States has become increasingly reliant on imports of these goods — a potential national security and economic risk that the Biden administration hopes to address with the planned 100-day review and the possibility of increased domestic production. However, Biden will also look to work with international partners to ensure a stable and reliable supply chain.

Marijuana Legalization Proposed In Maryland Legislature

A bill essentially legalizing recreational use of cannabis in Maryland would be an important step toward addressing social equity and racial injustices, advocates said. “This is the year we are talking about equity,” Del. Jazz Lewis, D-Prince George’s, sponsor of the bill, said at a Wednesday House Judiciary Committee hearing Capital News Service viewed. “And now is the time that we pass this bill.”

Read More: WJZ
Anne Arundel creates legal aid program for Annapolis housing authority residents facing eviction

More than 300 Annapolis housing authority residents who are behind on rent could soon get legal help to avoid being evicted, thanks to a new Anne Arundel County program announced this week. Arundel Community Development Services is contracting with Civil Justice Inc., a Maryland legal services organization, to give legal assistance and financial counseling, among other resources, to residents of the Housing Authority of the City of Annapolis. County Executive Steuart Pittman announced the program Tuesday during his weekly news conference.

Sweeping climate bill passes Maryland Senate committee after 4 voting sessions

The Senate Education, Health and Environmental Affairs Committee has advanced an omnibus climate action bill that would put Maryland on track toward achieving statewide net-zero emissions by 2045. The Climate Solutions Now Act of 2021 would require the state to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 60% and plant 5 million trees by 2030. It is sponsored by Sen. Paul G. Pinsky (D-Prince George’s), who is also chair of the committee, and Del. Dana L. Stein (D-Baltimore County) on the House side.

Read More: WTOP
Some state senators, staff test positive for COVID-19

A number of state senators and their staff have tested positive for COVID-19, Senate President Bill Ferguson said Tuesday. At the start of Tuesday morning’s session, Ferguson said there is an undetermined number of positive rapid tests. Nine of 47 senators were off the floor at the start of the session, though it is not clear how many of those nine had texted positive.

Read More: WBAL
Bill Aims To Raise Standards In Maryland’s Unemployment Insurance Program
The Maryland Department of Labor announced Tuesday it will begin to offer direct deposit to unemployment insurance claimants beginning in April. A Maryland House bill discussed Thursday in committee aims to establish higher standards on getting payments to claimants in need. “Too many Marylanders suffered unnecessarily this year,” Del. Lorig Charkoudian, D-Montgomery Co., said. “You don’t invest. You gut government. Even if you want it to work in a crisis, you can’t expect it to work in a crisis.”
Read More: WJZ

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