Budget is In, Wicomico Wins
The pace is already beginning to quicken in Annapolis as we wrap up our first full week of session. Week two was very productive and it feels great to be in the swing of things again.
Over the past week, I have been meeting with numerous individuals regarding upcoming legislation. Our practice is to reach out to groups who are advocating legislation that I agree with and to those who are proposing things that I will not likely support. It is important to me to set aside time to listen to both sides while using that time together to explore how bills can be beneficial or detrimental to those of us who call the Shore home.
I enjoy meeting people face-to-face when it comes to understanding the underlying issues that impact them daily, including and most importantly, you. This week I had the great opportunity to meet with representatives from the National Federation of the Blind and Trash Free MD to discuss issues, solutions, and their priorities.
I began the week with Delegate Hill (Baltimore & Howard Counties), Dr. James Chappell, and members from the Comptroller's Office, seeking to understand the distinction between the cosmetic versus medical uses of Botox and taxes associated it. Through my service on the Environment and Transportation Committee, I also had opportunities to participate in several briefings held by Department of Natural Resources, Maryland Department of the Environment, Department of Agriculture, Department of Housing and Community Development, Department of Planning, Community Development Network of Maryland, Automated Vehicles, Department of Transportation, and Maryland State Police. Participating in these conversations and receiving information prior to bill hearings and voting is essential to ensuring that my votes reflect informed decisions for you.
Throughout the week, I have had meetings with numerous colleagues in hopes of gaining support for the Highway User Revenues legislation that I am submitting. I was joined by Speaker of the House Mike Busch, Chair of the Appropriations Committee Delegate McIntosh (Baltimore City), and fellow legislators in discussion of the importance of Highway User Revenues and the effect they have on our counties and municipalities. It continues to be my priority, to restore these funds. We are all already paying into the fund via the gas tax, so I believe we should see the money return to benefit our roads.