Two join school board race
ANNAPOLIS — Newcomer Ethan J. Loewen and incumbent Linda Murray filed last week to run in the nonpartisan race for seats on the Washington County Board of Education, according to the Maryland Board of Elections.
Three terms on the board, including Murray’s, expire this year. Murray has served on the board since she was appointed to fill a vacancy in 2017, and was elected to the seat in 2018.
COVID still plagues the General Assembly
ANNAPOLIS — The 2022 Maryland General Assembly opens Wednesday, but the traditional fanfare will again be muted as legislative leaders seek to contain the spread of COVID-19 while still conducting business.
Senate President Bill Ferguson announced recently that the public will have access to the Senate gallery, but seating will be limited — some space will be reserved for journalists, and all seating will be spaced for social distancing.
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As usual, only members, officers, journalists, staff and approved guests will be permitted on the Senate floor.
Masks are required in all public areas of the Miller and James Senate office buildings, and committee rooms won’t be open to the public, except for journalists, before Feb. 14. After that date, seating will be available but limited; those testifying on bills will be encouraged to leave the committee rooms when their testimony is complete.
Witnesses must sign up to testify online at the General Assembly website, https://mgaleg.maryland.gov.
Members also are limited to having four people in their personal offices, in addition to staff, at one time. Members may add their own protocols, as well.
Likewise, designated seating will be available in the House gallery above House Speaker Adrienne Jones’ desk, and masks will be required.
All committee work in the House will be done virtually. Witnesses wishing to testify on bills must sign up online at the General Assembly website. Bill hearings in the House will be capped at 50 witnesses.
All committee voting sessions in both chambers will be livestreamed.