Another major change is the 2015 session will be the influx of new legislators. With redistricting and retirements, a total of 58 new delegates and 11 new senators will take office this month. Del.-elect Shelly Hettleman (D-District 11), who will sit on the Appropriations Committee, is one of those newcomers.
“As a new member of the Appropriations Committee I’m in a good position to be helpful to the Jewish community’s funding priorities,” Hettleman said via email, adding that she plans to advocate on behalf of some of the BJC’s priorities such as funding for upgrades to Sinai Hospital and Levindale Hebrew Geriatric Center and Hospital, maintenance of Northwest Hospital’s domestic violence program and support for the MIDC.
A former government relations director for the BJC, Hettleman said she will also back financing for programs for the elderly in the northwest Baltimore region.
In addition to getting to know her fellow legislators and attending various orientations for her new role, Hettleman has been fielding calls and emails from citizens of her district.
“Residents of the 11th District have begun to contact me about their constituent service concerns,” she said. “I’ve also been hearing from them about specific topics such as animal rights, state services for the disabled community and concerns about the budget. A church in the community that is seeking state aid for their refugee resettlement efforts has also asked me to help them.”