EFFORT TO FILL STATE WORKER VACANCIES FALLS SHORT: An effort to cut state worker vacancies in half is on pace to fall short of a promise made by Gov. Wes Moore. Moore (D) entered office in January promising to fill 5,000 vacant state jobs. Since then, the administration has not kept pace with that goal, according to the state’s own data. Arriving at an exact number has been difficult. Bryan Sears/Maryland Matters.
BAY HABITATS TO GET LARGE FED FUNDING BOOST: Habitats in the Chesapeake Bay watershed are about to receive a significant boost in support and protection, thanks to $7.4 million in new grants from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Fish And Wildlife Foundation. The money comprises 25 grants supporting habitat, climate resilience, community conservation partnerships and equitable access to nature in the watershed. Aliza Worthington/Baltimore Fishbowl.
MARYLAND PICKED AS FEDERAL WORKFORCE HUB WITH JOBS INVESTMENT: Flanked by members of President Joe Biden’s administration, Gov. Wes Moore on Monday announced Baltimore’s commitment to its designation as one of the nation’s five Workforce Hubs through investments in career and technical education and training for local workers. Hannah Gaskill/The Baltimore Sun.
- Career-oriented Baltimore City students will have the opportunity to participate in some of the $9.6 billion infrastructure projects funded by the Biden administration through apprenticeships. One of these projects includes the construction of the $4.7 billion Frederick Douglass Tunnel, which will replace the Baltimore and Potomac Tunnel that’s been in place for 150 years. Bri Hatch/WYPR-FM.
FERGUSON UPBEAT ON TRANSIT SERVICE DESPITE TRUST FUND PROBLEMS: Despite a state transportation trust fund that is currently stretched thin, Maryland Senate President Bill Ferguson late last week was upbeat on prospects that the 2024 session of the state’s General Assembly would provide additional aid to help head off possibly sharp cuts in services by the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority. Louis Peck/MoCo 360.
STATE HOSTS INPUT MEETINGS OVER CAPITAL-AREA TRAFFIC ISSUES: The state is advancing its American Legion Bridge and 270 Corridor Program – a project aimed at improving traffic congestion and transit in the region and replacing the American Legion Bridge – and the Maryland Department of Transportation is hostingevents to gather public feedback on the project. Elia Griffin/MoCo 360.
SCHOOL VACCINE CLINICS GET OFF TO A ROCKY START IN SOME JURISDICTIONS: Back-to-school vaccine clinics got off to a rocky start in some Maryland counties this year after the state health department did not renew a statewide contract with a Baltimore-based nonprofit that supports such immunization efforts. Without the help of nurses from the Maryland Partnership for Prevention or PrepMod, the nonprofit’s scheduling and vaccine documentation software, at least three county public school systems did not hold their usual flu vaccination clinics. Angela Roberts/The Baltimore Sun.
RASKIN LEADS HOUSE DEM ROUNDTABLE FORUM ON GUN LAWS: U.S. House Democrats held a Monday roundtable forum on changing U.S. gun laws following a recent mass shooting in Maine, where 18 people were killed. The top Democrat on the committee, Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-8th) invited witnesses to discuss gun violence solutions, and said that the gun industry lobby, the National Rifle Association and Republicans push back against gun reform. “We’re going to examine the nationwide gun emergency that’s taking place, the endless rounds of gun violence and massacres that are plaguing our society,” Raskin said. Ariana Figueroa/Maryland Matters.
OPINION: AN ODE TO THE ONCE & FUTURE BAY BRIDGE: No other engineering marvel shapes Maryland like the William Preston Lane Jr. Memorial (Bay) Bridge. It unites the state’s two halves, carrying Route 50 over the bay to Ocean City for the past 71 years. It frames the bay central to our identity, whether you live within sight of it or in the far reaches of Maryland. Rick Hutzell/The Baltimore Banner.
BALL NIXES IDEA OF RUNNING FOR CONGRESS: Howard County Executive Calvin Ball is not running for Congress. Ball, 48, said in October that he was giving “serious consideration” to running for the U.S. House seat being vacated by Democrat John Sarbanes at the end of next year. “I am truly humbled and honored by the countless people in Howard County and across Maryland who have encouraged me to run for Congress,” Ball said in a statement Monday on social media. “After careful consideration, I have decided not to run for Congress and to continue my work as county executive. ” Dillon Mullan/The Baltimore Sun.
BGE FIGHTS TO KEEP FUNDING MEMO PRIVATE: Baltimore Gas and Electric Co. is fighting to keep private an internal memo that details its deal with Baltimore city to continue using Baltimore’s underground conduit system. The Office of the People’s Counsel, a state office that advocates for the state’s utility consumers, asked the Maryland Public Service Commission last month to make the memo public. According to its filing with the commission, the memo explains how BGE potentially seeks to profit from the deal by having its customers pay for investments in infrastructure that the utility does not own. Hannah Gaskill/The Baltimore Sun.