I hope you and your family are healthy and safe and that all Moms had a wonderful Mother’s Day yesterday. I send these emails in the spirit of continuing to bring you helpful information during these challenging days.
VIRTUAL TOWN HALL – Tomorrow evening
On Tuesday, May 12 at 7:30 pm, we will be holding a Virtual Town Hall meeting focusing on health and mental health, as well as the importance of participating in the 2020 Census. You can register and submit questions here, and you can watch the Town Hall in real time (without registering) via my Senator Shelly Hettleman Facebook page at 7:30 Tuesday night.
STAY AT HOME ORDER REVISIONS
The Governor has announced changes to his Executive Orders and is permitting elective surgeries, the full opening of parks, golf courses, tennis courts, camp sites, horseback riding, etc. You can read the Governor’s full statement here.
He has also announced a Roadmap to Recovery Plan that outlines how he will scale back his Executive Orders. The Department of Commerce has a number of advisory groups that are suggesting safe approaches for a variety of businesses to re-engage with the public. I am a member of the Arts Recovery Task Force, charged with recommending how best the arts community in Maryland can proceed in these changed times. The reports, along with their recommendations, will be available to the public in the coming weeks.
So many people continue to face difficulties while trying to access the Unemployment Insurance program through the Department of Labor. The Department has now posted video tutorials, so please check them out if you’re still struggling to enter the database. Our office maintains a list of constituents who have not been able to get their questions answered and we regularly communicate with the Department about these problems. Unfortunately, we have not been able to get too many answers, but we continue to press.
The Senate Budget and Taxation and Finance Committees will be holding hearings on the unemployment insurance problems on May 12th at 1:00. You can view the hearings via the Maryland General Assembly’s YouTube broadcast here.
INFORMATION FOR OLDER ADULTS
Baltimore County has opened up new food delivery assistance sites for older adults that can only be accessed by appointment, by calling 410-887-2040. The nearest one to our district is the Liberty Senior Center, 3525 Resource Drive, Randallstown. If you cannot make the trip, alternative arrangements can be made by calling 410-887-2594. You can also get more information here.
Baltimore County also has its fantastic senior centers operating virtually. For more information about the array of services available online through the Senior Centers, check them out here.
SCHOLARSHIPS STILL AVAILABLE TO DISTRICT 11 STUDENTS ATTENDING COLLEGE IN MARYLAND
Even though there are many uncertainties about how higher educational institutions will adapt their learning spaces to ensure safety among their students, as well as when students will be able to return, we continue to take applications for students who may be attending college in Maryland in the fall. You can access my scholarship here — we’ve extended the deadline until June 1st.
CONFIRMED CASES OF CORONAVIRUS DATA IN AND AROUND DISTRICT 11 (data as of 5/11/20)
If you would like to see the statewide data, it is updated each day at 10:00 am, and you may click here.
SMALL BUSINESS ASSISTANCE
Baltimore County has a new $10 million program to assist small businesses that have been affected by COVID-19 that just opened up TODAY. You can read about it and get eligibility information here. In addition, there are 100 grants available to artists who have been affected by the virus that you can read about here.
Please join us in supporting our local restaurants by joining the #TakeOutTuesdays effort. Post a photo on social media of you enjoying takeout from one of the local restaurants listed below.
JUNE 2nd ELECTIONS
Maryland’s Primary Election was postponed until June 2nd . You will need to vote by mail. You do NOT need to request an absentee ballot – it will be mailed to you at the address where you are registered. If you would like to request that it be mailed to a different address, you can click here. There will be a few sites for voting in person (only if absolutely necessary). In our area they are:
6817 Dogwood Road
Windsor Mill, MD 21244
Baltimore County Board of Elections (drop off only)
11112 Gilroy Road
Hunt Valley, MD 21031
You may notice my name on the ballot, as a Biden delegate to the Democratic Convention. I would appreciate your support!
The 2020 Presidential election season is upon us. Along with Delegate Dana Stein and many others, I am helping to coordinate Baltimore County’s effort to support Joe Biden as our Democratic nominee. Please let me know if you would like to join our effort!
2020 General Assembly bills
You may have heard that the Governor announced his vetoes of a number of very important pieces of legislation the 2020 General Assembly passed this session. They include the Blueprint for Maryland Education (aka the Kirwan Commission) and a bill to settle the grievances of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU’s), among many others. You can read about the vetoes here, and at some point in the not-too-distant future, I will write about a number of my bills that will become law this year. Unfortunately, the Governor vetoed one bill, that I introduced with Senate President Bill Ferguson, to direct $150,000 and tweak Maryland Corps, a program enacted into law in 2017 that created a statewide public service program. What a missed opportunity – especially in these days – to fully realize this important statewide program. More on these issues soon….
Thank you to those who continue to toil on the front lines either in healthcare or as an essential worker in a grocery store, delivery service, etc. Thank you very much for your service during these difficult times!
I am confident that we will make it through these challenges working together. Thanks for all you’re doing to keep yourself and your friends, relatives & community safe by #stayingathome. As always, please don’t hesitate to reach out if we can be of assistance.
Senator, District 11