First, of course, get registered if you aren't yet -- by tomorrow. Then think about your vote in this context -- Maryland needs fast action on decarbonizing the electrical grid and saving the Chesapeake Bay. And, f course, we need well-educated young people to take charge of the effort. Plus more, read on.
TOMORROW – TUESDAY, OCT. 18 – IS THE LAST DAY TO REGISTER TO VOTE IN MARYLAND.
Ballot Drop Boxes Installed Statewide: With Maryland’s general election day less than a month away, all ballot drop boxes have been installed across the state, according to the Maryland State Board of Elections. Maryland’s general election day will be held Nov. 8, with polls open 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Anyone in line to vote by 8 p.m. on Election Day will be able to cast a ballot. Baltimore Fishbowl.
States will play key role in implementing climate law to decarbonize power sector, paper finds
The recently passed climate law will position the United States to achieve 73 to 76 percent clean electricity by 2030. But meeting this ambitious target will depend, in large part, on “optimal” implementation of the law at the state level, according to a paper released late last week. WaPo
As we see below, though, state officials and agencies may have been slow-walking some important initiatives during the Hogan administration. And the state Public Service Commission, critical to decarbonizing the regional grid, has been a contentious battlefield between the Guv and the Assembly for years.
State Agencies Hit Hard In Environmental Scorecard: An environmental justice center at the University of Maryland’s School of Public Health has issued a highly-critical “scorecard” grading nine state agencies on their practices and policies for protecting the environment and prioritizing services to communities disproportionately harmed by environmental racism. Aman Azhar/Baltimore Banner
Bay-state governors and the EPA dump cleanup deadline
(Opinion) On Tuesday, the Environmental Protection Agency caved to Chesapeake Bay-state governors and agricultural interests by failing to enforce the Clean Water Act or impose sanctions on recalcitrant states for violating mandates to reduce bay pollutants. Instead, the annual meeting of the Chesapeake Executive Council with the EPA administrator and bay-state governors turned into a self-congratulatory session where for the third time it was acknowledged that bay states will miss a vital cleanup deadline. -- By Gerald Winegrad (former Assembly member) in WaPo Local Opinion
Education and schools
Blueprint board recommends timeline to implement comprehensive education plan
A board established to implement Maryland’s comprehensive education plan recommended a proposed timeline to have it done in phases. Maryland Matters
Workers and Labor
State Delays W. Maryland Hospital Privatization Plan: The Maryland Department of Health withdrew its requests to a state spending board on Wednesday that would have given the agency broad powers to approve two health care contracts worth tens of millions of dollars to outsource staffing at Western Maryland Hospital Center. The agency will still pursue the contracts for the Hagerstown facility by standard procedures./WYPR-
At issue for the powerful three-member Board of Public works was whether to approve outsourcing up to $128 million in skilled nursing, long-term acute care and brain injury services before a vendor was selected, an accelerated timeline that critics of the contracts say term-limited Gov. Larry Hogan wants locked in before he leaves office. WaPo
Maryland Health Secretary Dennis Schrader told the Board of Public Works members that the state would seek a more conventional arrangement to provide health care services in Western Maryland later in the fall. Maryland Matters.
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