Wednesday, May 9, 2012

VIDEO: Gov. Martin O'Malley Releases Video Statement Regarding May 14th Special Session // Other Options for August

Today, Gov. Martin O'Malley released a video statement outlining his reasons for calling for a special legislative session next Monday, May 14th:

: As you likely know, the legislature ended its 2012 session last month, but Senators and Delegates failed to reach agreement on key policy matters, including whether to expand casino gaming into Prince George's County. As a result, State legislative leaders and the Governor agreed to hold two special sessions, one next week and one in August to deal with gaming issues.

In the video above, Gov. O'Malley outlines numerous reasons why we need a special session to generate additional revenue for Maryland (aka increase taxes). He notes that Maryland has for four years in a row had the best public schools in the nation and is only 1 of 8 states with a AAA bond rating. But police, teachers, and transportation cost money. This used to be an obvious point, but even Democrats these days seem scared of taxes -- too scared if you ask me. When did we all buy into the Bush-Cheney-Tea Party dream of a hobbled government?

Notably, Gov. O'Malley's video message also calls for citizen feedback: "We need to hear from you. Your elected officials need to hear from you." Tweet Feedback on Special Session Priorities to #MDForward

BETTER ISSUES THAN GAMBLING FOR AUGUST: Maryland Juice's two cents? Pass your revenue package next week, and then use the August special session for something good (aka not gambling). How about examining why it is that Maryland spends so much time and money sniffing out drug violations in its African American community:

Source: Justice Policy Institute, Race & Incarceration in Maryland - 2003.

STOP WASTING MONEY JAILING NON-VIOLENT DRUG OFFENDERS: If you think the over-incarceration and lack of economic opportunities for African Americans (and plenty of other groups) in Maryland isn't a fiscal issue, think again. In one of the most well-educated states in the nation, we continue to grandfather nonsense policymaking into our legislature and state agencies. Um, why?

If you want yet another suggestion for something to work on in August, how about finally repealing the death penalty in Maryland?


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