Message From Governor Larry Hogan
We’ve reached the halfway point of the 2018 legislative session! Our team has been working tirelessly on behalf of all Marylanders to pass our common sense and bipartisan legislation, which includes providing tax relief for our hardworking citizens, increasing accountability for local school systems, protecting victims of crime, and getting repeat violent criminals off our streets. We are also pushing to enact term limits for legislators and finally pass redistricting reform to end the practice of gerrymandering in our state. To see all the legislation we’ve introduced and are fighting for, click here.
In addition to the busy legislative session, our entire administration traveled across the state this month to ensure that all Marylanders are heard. We took our entire cabinet to the Community College of Baltimore County Essex Campus where we held our third regional cabinet meeting. After the meeting, our team fanned out for Baltimore County Day – between myself, Lt. Governor Boyd Rutherford, and our secretaries and directors, we made nearly 100 stops. Read more about the meeting below and see a recap of the entire day in our Video Highlights section.
Lt. Governor Rutherford and I were also proud to host a Black History Month celebration. Each year, the month of February offers an opportunity to recognize and to celebrate the countless contributions of African Americans throughout our history and the lasting impact of that heritage today. We were honored to welcome an incredible Marylander and respected civil rights activist, former Maryland Congressman and NAACP President Kweisi Mfume. His inspirational words remind us that, although much progress has been made, there is still much more to be done.
We’re looking forward to a packed month, with events across the state and the legislative session in full swing. Be sure to stay up to date on what’s going on by following my Facebook page, Twitter, and Snapchat (username: LarryHogan).
See you next month!
Regional Cabinet Meeting – Bringing Annapolis to Baltimore County
Governor Larry Hogan joined his Cabinet and leadership team to host a regional cabinet meeting in Baltimore County. This marks the administration’s third regional cabinet meeting, continuing the governor’s promise to directly connect local communities and citizens with state government. The public event was held at the Baltimore Community College Essex Campus and was attended by students, local leaders, and members of the community.
“We are here because we do not want there to be any disconnect between Annapolis and the people of Baltimore County,” said Governor Hogan. “We have made it a priority to make sure that people from one end of the state to the other know that they have a voice in Annapolis, a seat at the table, and that they have an administration that is working for you each and every day.”
Following the regional meeting, the governor, lieutenant governor, secretaries, and directors dispersed across the local community, holding nearly 100 meetings, tours, and visits with local leaders and organizations. Governor Hogan visited Boulevard Diner, Medstar Franklin Square Hospital, Dulaney High School, and the Pikesville Armory.
Bill Signing – Protecting Rape Survivors and Their Families
Governor Larry Hogan joined Senate President Thomas V. “Mike” Miller and Speaker of the House Mike Busch to sign the Rape Survivor Family Protection Act into law. This new law, passed with the governor’s vocal support after nearly a decade of efforts by advocates, will enable rape victims who conceive a child to terminate the parental rights of their rapist. At the outset of the 2018 session of the Maryland General Assembly, the presiding officers stated their support for this legislation, while the governor called on legislators to act expeditiously and pledged to sign it the moment it reached his desk.
“Our administration made a commitment to work with legislative leaders to pass this important and long overdue legislation, and I am proud to sign this bill into law,” said Governor Hogan. “No rapist should be allowed to maintain their rights as a parent, and no victim should ever be forced to interact with their attacker. The Rape Survivor Family Protection Act will ensure just that.”
Update – Securing Our Streets
Governor Larry Hogan, the U.S. Marshals Service, along with state and local law enforcement, provided an update on the joint law enforcement initiative to fight violent crime in Baltimore. This partnership, representing nearly 500 federal, state and local law enforcement officers and agents, and the Baltimore Police Department, resulted in more than 500 arrests, including 259 of the city’s most violent criminals being removed from the streets.
Last fall, Governor Hogan convened a series of meetings with federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies to discuss how to best assist Baltimore City in addressing the violent crime crisis. Following those meetings, the Hogan Administration announced a series of immediate and aggressive steps to support the Baltimore Police Department in removing as many repeat violent offenders as possible from city streets as quickly as possible.
“Several months ago, I directed the Maryland State Police, the Maryland Transportation Authority Police, the Maryland Transit Administration Police, the Maryland Natural Resources Police, and the Maryland Capitol Police to establish a more visible presence in the high crime areas of Baltimore City and those suffering from elevated instances of violent criminal activity,” said Governor Hogan.
“I want to be absolutely clear: we have no tolerance whatsoever to those who are engaging in this violent activity and terrorizing the streets of Baltimore,” the governorcontinued. “We will find you, we will arrest you, and we will prosecute you to the fullest extent of the law.”
Our Number One Priority – Education
Lockbox: Keeping the Promise
Governor Larry Hogan announced legislation to create a “lockbox” for education funding to ensure that all revenues from Maryland casinos go directly to funding K-12 education and improvements to the state’s public school facilities.
Maryland voters approved slot machine gambling in 2008 based on a pledge from the legislature and previous administration that the new revenues generated would supplement existing funding. However, the legislation that was enacted allowed for the new revenues to simply supplant existing funding.
The governor’s Commitment to Education Act of 2018 will increase education spending by more than $4.4 billion over the next decade by phasing in casino revenues from the Education Trust Fund over the next four years. The legislation also dedicates the first 20 percent of these revenues to school construction starting immediately, which will add an additional $1 billion over the decade.
“Voters want to know that these dollars that were promised for schools actually go to schools – that is exactly what our education lockbox legislation will accomplish. Our Commitment to Education Act of 2018 will finally fulfill the promise made to voters back in 2007,” said Governor Hogan. “Our administration didn’t make that promise, but it’s imperative that we all come together to keep that promise.”
Safety Enhancements: Protecting Our Students
Governor Hogan also announced a series of new initiatives, including new funding, an executive order, and emergency legislation. He also voiced his support for existing legislative proposals to enhance safety in Maryland schools; increase coordination among schools, state agencies, and law enforcement; and keep firearms out of the hands of the mentally ill and individuals with violent criminal records.
“There is no more important job than keeping our citizens safe – especially our children. In the wake of the horrific school shooting in Parkland, Florida, citizens here in our state and all across America want to know what government at all levels is doing to keep our children safe, and what we are collectively doing to stop gun violence and violent crime,” said Governor Hogan. “Classrooms should never be a place of fear for our children. No mom or dad should ever have to worry when they send their kids off to school whether their son or daughter is going to come home safely.”