Wednesday began with Senator Bailey meeting with an independent consultant who is studying the need for a new outdoor sports complex and indoor field house in St. Mary’s County. The Maryland Stadium Authority is facilitating a series of conversations with people throughout Southern Maryland to demonstrate the need this facility. Senator Bailey has worked with the Stadium Authority and the St. Mary’s County Commissioners to advance this important project for Southern Maryland.
Today, Governor Hogan released the budget for Fiscal Year 2021. The budget bills are the most important bills the General Assembly will consider during this legislative session. There are two budget bills: the Operating Budget, which covers ongoing, short-term state expenses such as salaries for employees, and the Capital Budget, which covers long-term infrastructure projects. Under the Maryland Constitution, the Operating Budget must be balanced; the amount of the proposed spending cannot exceed the State’s estimated revenues. The General Assembly can only reduce or restrict funding, it cannot add to the budget unless the Governor introduces a supplemental budget that accounts for that increase. This is the sixth consecutive year Governor Hogan has introduced a structurally balanced budget, limiting growth in spending to 1% without raising taxes or cutting services. More information on the budget is available from the Governor’s office here.
Later in the day, Senator Bailey met with representatives of Maryland Shall Issue and the NRA to discuss introducing legislation that would remove administrative hurdles to obtaining a handgun permit. In the afternoon, Senator Bailey attended briefings on the environment, the Port of Baltimore, the State Board of Veterinary Medical Examiners, and the State Board of Professional Counselors and Therapists in his Committee. Following these briefings, Senator Bailey met with local chiefs of police from throughout the State of Maryland, including St. Mary’s County Sheriff Tim Cameron.