There are just more than two weeks until the end of the legislative session in Annapolis. News Director Joel McCord talked to WYPR’s Christopher Connelly about some of the big items in the state house this week.
Annapolis Wrap: Health Exchange Audit, Budget And Phosphorous Rules
The Democratic-led House of Delegates gave its preliminary approval to Republican Gov. Larry Hogan's budget Wednesday. The version passed by the lower chamber departs significantly from Hogan’s plan, beefing up spending on schools, safety net programs and state worker pay.
Even with the price of oil slowly inching up, gas prices at the pump are still some of the lowest we’ve seen in years. But whatever it costs to fill up your tank, in Annapolis there’s a debate simmering over how much the state should add to the gas tax.
Joe Getty used to be a senator on the state’s budget and tax committee. These days, though, he’s Governor Larry Hogan’s legislative director. The Carroll County Republican went back to his old committee this week to make the case for a key piece of his boss’s agenda: Stop the state’s gas tax from going up.
The two chambers of the Maryland General Assembly took up and passed separate bills related to the controversial drilling technique known as hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, on Tuesday. One would put a moratorium on fracking until a panel can study the potential public health consequences. The other sets strict standards to hold gas drillers accountable if those consequences occur.
The Maryland Senate gave preliminary approval to a bill that would modify the state’s stormwater management fee moved forward on Thursday. If passed, it could end a long-simmering controversy over the so-called “rain tax.”
Gov. Larry Hogan made repealing a requirement that Baltimore City and the nine biggest counties charge a fee to fund efforts to stop dirty stormwater from running into the bay a lynchpin of his campaign. But the Senate Education, Health and Environmental Affairs committee killed his effort.