This week, Week 5 of the General Assembly session, is a big one for hearings on critical bills – on the environment (throughout the week), on Kirwan education funding and accountability (mostly Wednesday), and on social justice with an emphasis on criminal justice, immigration and the criminalization of poverty (lots of them on Tuesday). Below, the Maryland Legislative Coalition shCans the schedule and keys the issues for you along with the Job Opportunities Task Force, two of our pivotal social justice allies.
Progressive Maryland Weekly Memo for Monday February 10 2020
ALL EYES ON ANNAPOLIS – WEEK 5
This week is a big one for hearings on critical bills – on the environment (throughout the week), on Kirwan education funding and accountability (mostly Wednesday), and on social justice with an emphasis on criminal justice, immigration and the criminalization of poverty (lots of them on Tuesday). Below, the Maryland Legislative Coalition shows the schedule and keys the issues for you. Upcoming hearings https://mailchi.mp/8cc62a5a3ec2/2020-maryland-legislative-session-welcome-1156499?e=d378240ba7
And in this email, the MLC explains their top priority bills as the week unfolds. Two thousand seven hundred bills more or less have been filed, so you gotta be choosy. Week 5: https://mailchi.mp/a53fab9bdccd/2020-maryland-legislative-session-welcome-1159691?e=d378240ba7
The Job Opportunities Task Force, which is prioritizing bills to decriminalize poverty, has this roundup and recommendations for Week 5 https://mailchi.mp/jotf/jotfpolicyupdateweek6?e=301b770b0c
UPCOMING LOBBY DAYS
Every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday - 9:00 am - Strong Schools Maryland
TODAY Monday, February 10th - 5:00 pm - School Based Health Centers Advocacy Day
Tuesday, February 11th - 9:00 am - Lobby Day for End-Of-Life Option Act
Wednesday, February 12th - 3:30 pm - Transit Day of Action - Rally in Annapolis - 5:00 pm - Transit Caucus and Lobby Night for MTA Funding
Thursday, February 13th - 9:30 am - Lobby Day for End-Of-Life Option Act
Monday, February 17 Maryland Climate Coalition (with Chesapeake Climate Action Network) Lobby night
Monday, February 17th Strong Schools Maryland rally 10:30 AM
Monday, February 17th - 6:00 pm - ACLU Lobby Day
Monday, February 17th - 8:00 pm - JUFJ Lobby Day
Tuesday, February 18th - 9:00 am - Lobby Day for End-Of-Life Option Act
Thursday, February 20th - 9:30 am - Lobby Day for End-Of-Life Option Act
Monday, February 24 – Sierra Club Lobby Night
All these proposed bills have to jostle for room inside some form of state budget. Kevin Kinnally of Conduit Street, the newsletter of the Maryland Association of Counties, has a roundup on the Budget Briefing presented to legislators early in the session by the Department of Legislative Services. It is more than you ever wanted to know, but features outstanding explanatory graphics. https://conduitstreet.mdcounties.org/2020/01/20/fiscal-briefing-highlights-budget-big-picture/
Progressive Maryland’s BlogSpace and Weekly Memos will follow the Assembly session – but when that ends in April, we’ll keep going with our advocacy for progressive efforts in Maryland and, sometimes, how they are echoed in the wider region and nation.
And speaking of helpful emails – you can sign up to get this Weekly Memo by email.
PROGRESSIVE MARYLAND IS HIRING – Organize with us throughout the state and in digital and strategic organizing tasks – check the opportunities here.
OUR CHAPTERS AROUND THE STATE
MOCO Update February 10, 2020
Education issues, state and local, continue to be a key focus for PM’s Montgomery County work.
On the local level we’re supporting the Education Association’s call to the School District and the County Council and Executive to fully fund our public schools. Please join us tomorrow night at Tuesday February 11 at 6:00 p.m. to support out teachers! MCEA is in the midst of contract negotiations and we will bring a delegation of community folks to the upcoming February sessions to support the teachers.
On the state level, we support full funding of the Kirwan Commission game-changing recommendations for the Maryland public school system. Please come out for the rally in Annapolis next Monday February 17 at 10:30 a.m. https://twitter.com/strongschoolsmd?lang=en
See full list of Lobby Days, above.
Upcoming Events and Actions Needed:
--MCPS needs more money in its operating budget to provide full staffing and resources for the services and programs that students, schools and our community need. We’re organizing to get MCPS to make a strong recommendation on funding to our County government. We also need to contact County Executive Marc Elrich and our County Council Members to urge them to vote for full funding.
We’ll share dates and activities regarding public budget hearings and Board of Education meetings as they get scheduled
--Support a new initiative that can help positively shape MCPS now and in the future: the MCPS’s Districtwide Boundary Analysis. Progressive Maryland supports this Analysis and is getting signatures to a letter that One Montgomery has written to the School Superintendent and School Board Chair.
Please sign and share with at least three other folks as we need to show there’s public support for gathering up-to-date data and facts about the operations and workings of our growing district.
--We’re also teaming with One Montgomery to urge MCPS and their consultants to do more outreach (in addition to the public forums that have been held) about the analysis with communities and parents who have not yet been fully represented during this phase of public engagement.
Kirwan Commission Action, ongoing:
- Call, email or write to your Delegates and State Senators asking them to fully fund all of the Kirwan recommendations. Once implemented, this statewide measure will improve the quality and advance the mission of public schools all over the state. Here are some suggested points you can use, courtesy of our allies at Strong Schools Maryland:
- Our students and schools are the winners when these recommendations get funded. Maryland schools have been underfunded for too long, our kids can’t wait.
- Support the full range of proposed systems changes. Taken together, they will make a difference for all Maryland students--the changes needed in education practice and funding require a comprehensive approach, not a selective one.
- We need full funding. Taking action this year will help us avoid much bigger costs in state and local dollars for social services in the future.
- The new funding formula ensures that all districts receive enough funding AND it will help fix many inequity issues in the current school funding formula.
Thank you for taking action on these issues at this urgent time. Contact Patty Snee at [email protected] if you want to learn more and get involved in the MOCO Chapter’s education and outreach work.
Our next meeting is the at the Wicomico Public Library in Downtown Salisbury on February 20! Click here for info.
EVENTS FROM OUR ALLIES
Tuesday FEB 11 – LCLAA membership meeting – 6 pm, IAM headquarters, 9000 Machinists place, Upper Marlboro, MD — LCLAA is the Labor Committee for Latin American Advancement, the largest national organization for Latinx workers. For further information contact Sonia Lozano at [email protected]
Wednesday, February 12 "The Science Behind Drawdown Solutions On Renewable Energy" Greenbelt Climate Action Network -- at Greenbelt Community Center, Room 114 Greenbelt, MD 20220 https://www.facebook.com/events/1460589707429311/ -- presenter Vijay Parameshwaran is a scientist and Greenbelt resident who has worked on research in renewable energy for a decade. Learn about some of the scientific concepts behind renewable energy processes that apply to several of the drawdown solutions. They include photovoltaics, chemical energy storage and delivery, the electrical grid, nuclear, wind, geothermal, and hydroelectric. -- a platform to discuss basic principles and how they tie into current trends, with plenty of Q&A.
Saturday, February 15 Anne Arundel County NAACP monthly meeting 10 AM-noon, Guest is Lt. Gov. Boyd Rutherford -- Kingdom Celebration Center, 1350 Blair Dr # H, Odenton, MD 21133
Saturday FEB 15 Our Revolution MoCo meets, 1-3 PM, Council Office Building in the Cafeteria, 100 Maryland Avenue, Rockville, MD 20850
Tuesday FEB 18 MORE Network Community Meeting , 6-9 pm Grace Episcopal Church, 1607 Grace Church Rd, Silver Spring, Maryland 20910 Hosted by MORE Network – Montgomery County Racial Equity Network and 3 others: Engage and connect via an overview and update on the Racial Equity and Social Justice bill/ Bill 27-19; and plan next steps. https://www.facebook.com/events/202636414255374/
Monday February 24 2020 Mayoral Forum on Environment & Equity at 6pm at Mt. Lebanon Baptist Church (2821 Reisterstown Rd). Hosted by Baltimore Blue Green Just, Charm City mayoral candidates and their visions regarding environmental and social justice issues in Baltimore. Moderators: local radio host Tom Hall and UMD associate dean Dr. Sheri Parks. Doors open at 5:30pm register online
And see our list of progressive organizations’ Lobby Days in Annapolis, above
Baltimore progressives, Check in on the wide-ranging Baltimore Activist Alert calendar and tip sheet at http://baltimorenonviolencecenter.blogspot.com/
Reading the Progressive Maryland BlogSpace: our recent blogs are shown below, but if you want a handy way to keep track – and never miss a blog post – you can sign up to get this Weekly Memo by email. Remember this is your blogspace and your participation is heartily invited. See something going on that you don’t like – or that you do like and hope to see more of? Send us your thoughts; submit to the moderator at [email protected]
We recently published these blog posts:
February 07, 2020 Opening doors to democracy in Prince George's County
Democracy in Prince George’s County depends on increasing access to power outside the tightly-held approval pipeline of the county’s large donor class and elected leaders.
The last thing ordinary folks need is to let big money further into the county’s electoral sphere. But that's where some politically powerful figures want to take us.
February 03, 2020 Progressive Maryland Weekly Memo for Monday, February 3, 2020
The Assembly Session rumbles down the track, and we have the day by day and week by week schedule for progressives. Co-governance means pressing your delegation for action on your concerns. Remind them that they will need you on their side, and what it takes to keep you there.
January 29, 2020 Best use of our tax dollars – education reform for equality
As Maryland General Assembly members are putting together funding bills to improve the state's educational system, a new study from the Economic Policy Institute points up, state by state, the burning need for a quality system of early childhood education -- and how it is failing badly in Maryland as it is in most states across the nation. the Maryland Legislative Coalition provides the details on the funding package as it takes shape in the Assembly session.
>REMEMBER – these blog posts are frequently expressions of political opinion from our wide-ranging membership and circle of allies. They are not expressions of opinion by Progressive Maryland. Don’t be surprised if they sometimes vary in their political content. You might even disagree with them – a good reason to contribute a blog of your own. Send it to the moderator, Woody Woodruff, at [email protected].
>>Keeping up with the blogs is easier with the index. The blogs published in the PM BlogSpace from June 2015 through December 2016 are all available with descriptions and links here. You can follow blogs for 2017-18 starting from here