VICTORY! The Fight for $15 is won in MoCo

Rockville, MD – This morning the Montgomery County Council unanimously passed Bill 28-17 to raise the minimum wage in Montgomery County from $11.50 an hour to $15 an hour. The bill would raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour for employees of business of 51 or more people by 2021. The wage hike will reach businesses of 49 or less people by 2023 and business of 10 or fewer people by 2024. The passage includes a provision to index the minimum for inflation starting in 2022.

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Staying home on Election Day: the ultimate bad decision

 “There are 13 municipal elections on the ballot Tuesday, and a handful of others are scattered throughout November. Voters will head to the polls Tuesday in Annapolis, Bel Air, Chestertown, College Park, Denton, Frederick, Gaithersburg, Greenbelt, Greensboro, Laurel, Marydel, Pittsville and Takoma Park.

Annapolis and Frederick are the big prizes. These are partisan elections, in contrast to the others — and both political parties have a lot at stake.”

These are not to be ignored. Here's why.

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Progressive Maryland Weekly Memo for Nov. 6-12

It’s Election Day in more places than you might think tomorrow – some folks will be GOTV-busy in Virginia, lending a hand to competitive progressive candidates in NoVa, others focused on Annapolis or Frederick municipal elections (see below) or others around the state. And MoCo has a big Council vote on a $15 minimum wage tomorrow, as well. Find out about all this, and more...

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Guaranteed Health Care Digest: "Tax Reform" Hazardous to Health Care

The GOP "tax reform" plan that dumps still more money into the hands of corporations and the rich pays for it by taking money away from working families. Here is what this bill means for the US and for Maryland, the impact on health care and opportunities to fight back.

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Maglev? Hyperloop? How about fixing what we've got?

The concrete achievement of a really useful intercity rail system is in reach for Maryland if it defers the maglev and hyperloop dreams in favor of the needs of today’s household travelers.

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Prince George's co-op movement kicked off in Seat Pleasant; time to join in

Prince George's residents are building power and regaining control of democracy by pooling resources to focus on change. The first Prince George's Co-Op meeting laid the groundwork and a grassroots, self-funding movement for popular empowerment is under way, as you will read here.

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What do we mean by “affordable housing” in Howard County? Are the right people controlling that decision?

From a purely social justice point of view, the supply of affordable units should depend on the number of families and individuals in need. Add to that the history of Columbia, where all types of housing were intermingled in an effort to consciously avoid housing segregation and to allow people to live near where they work.  We know what we need, but who is making those decisions? Progressive HoCo activist Dave Bazell explores need vs. greed.

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Progressive Maryland Weekly Memo for Oct. 30-Nov. 5

More discussions are emerging around the state to build a progressive agenda for the 2018 General Assembly session beginning in January. Criminal Justice, social provision and education will all be on the table, and if we are not seated at the table, we wind up being dinner. It’s an election year so don’t let the well-paid business lobbyists dominate the conversation.

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Co-op strategy, a tool to empower us all, can happen in Prince George's

The Prince George’s County co-op will build power through organizing money and organizing people. Prince George’s County residents will be able to quickly move on issues that impact them the most and we won’t have to rely on outside dollars to give us the green light. Join us Saturday, October 28th at 12 p.m. for the kick-off event entitled “What If We Funded Ourselves?” -- RSVP using this link: http://www.progressivemaryland.org/pg_coop

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Why Citizens United overwhelms public financing of elections options

In this well-reported Oct. 22 article, Meghan Thompson, writing for the political blog Maryland Matters, furnishes evidence that public financing plans will probably always be behind in providing an alternative to big-money dominance in elections as long as big-money dominance in elections is unregulated and uncontrolled – a plain outcome of the US Supreme Court’s disastrous Citizens United decision of 2010. Efforts to propose a constitutional amendment to reverse Citizens United are somewhat chilled by the fear that it might trigger a wholesale constitutional convention that could bring mischief of a much different sort. 

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