State Roundup: State aid to prevent evictions; police reform makes slow progress in House | #schoolshooting

HELP TO STALL EVICTIONS: A nonprofit corporation that distributes grants to ensure access to legal services to Marylanders who are in danger of losing their homes will receive $11.7 million from the state, Bryan Renbaum writes for Maryland Reporter. Gov. Larry Hogan and Attorney General Brian Frosh made the joint announcement Thursday about the grant to Maryland Legal Services Corporation to provide legal services to families facing eviction and other housing security issues.

POLICE REFORM MOVES ALONG, BIG ISSUES REMAIN: Lawmakers tasked with police reform are making some progress but have yet to make decisions the most controversial proposals including the Law Enforcement Officers’ Bill of Rights, what to include on a statewide use of force or who should prosecute police misconduct cases, Pamela Wood reports for the Sun.

  • The legislative work group wants the Maryland General Assembly to consider requiring regular mental and physical health assessments of officers and mandating that every police department in the state use body cameras by 2025, Ovetta Wiggins reports for the Post.

PELOSI, RASKIN PROPOSE COMMISSION TO EVALUATE PREZ: Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.), a constitutional law expert, is expected to unveil a bill with Speaker Nancy Pelosi that would create a commission to determine whether a president is fit for office amid concerns over President Trump becoming sick with COVID-19, Cristina Marcos reports for The Hill.

  • Raskin introduced a similar measure in 2017 that would establish a congressionally appointed commission of physicians and top leaders who could evaluate the president’s health — both mental and physical — and work with the vice president on a transfer of power, Felicia Sonmez reports for the Post.

HIGHEST PAID STATE EMPLOYEES ANALYSIS: University System of Maryland Chancellor Jay Perman is the highest-paid person on the state payroll, Drew Hansen reports for the Washington Business Journal along with a list of state employees making more than $100,000. But in today’s world, even Perman just took a pay cut.

BOARD OF ELECTIONS OFFICIAL DECRIES VOTER INTIMIDATION: Maryland Board of Elections Vice Chair P.J. Hogan is reminding voters that the state has a voter intimidation statute following comments by President Trump that his supporters should go to the polls and watch carefully, Emily Opilo reports for the Sun.

AUDIT REVEALS EMPLOYEE PAID FOR MONTHS OF LEAVE: State auditors found a manager at the Maryland Department of Assessments and Taxation was paid nearly $56,000 for five months of leave last year with no explanation before being terminated, Pamela Wood reports for the Sun.

  • A leading legislator said the payout called the quality of the agency’s managerial oversight into question, Bruce DePuyt writes for Maryland Matters.

BMORE BUS DRIVER VICTIM OF SHOOTING: Longtime Maryland Transit Administration bus driver Marcus Parks was shot and killed after arguing with a man Thursday morning in Southeast Baltimore, drawing condemnation from state leaders for the crime against an essential frontline worker and calls for more safety protections from the transit union, Christine Condon and Tim Prudente report for the Sun.

FRANCHOT WANTS SECOND STIMULUS: Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot called for businesses to get a second round of federal stimulus to make it through the winter months, Ryan Marshall reports for The Frederick News-Post.

SCHOOLS PLANNING HYBRID, LIMITED RETURNS: Even with cases ticking up enough to be classified as a “high risk” by the health department, Carroll County Board of Education leaders said they are committed to reopening under a hybrid model Oct. 19, Bob Blubaugh reports for the Carroll County Times.

  • Allegany County Public Schools is bringing first-graders back to the classroom Monday, reports the Cumberland Times-News. The first graders will join pre-kindergarteners and kindergarteners, who began school this week, and will attend four days per week, with Fridays being a virtual day.

THIAM TO APPEAR ON STATE CIRCLE: New Del. Brenda J. Thiam will be interviewed on MPT’s “State Circle” program. Thiam, the General Assembly’s first Black Republican woman, was appointed to fill a seat vacated by Del. Paul Corderman when he was tapped to serve in the Senate, the staff of the Hagerstown Herald-Mail reports.

CUMBERLAND SEEKING STATE GRANTS: The Cumberland mayor and City Council is seeking $1.3 million in state grants to fund seven projects for infrastructure, including underwater line taps, and housing, Greg Larry reports for the Cumberland Times-News.


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