RENTAL ASSISTANCE PAYOUTS LAG: About $100 million of the $401 million in rental assistance funds that the state has received from the federal government this year have been paid out or processed, Bryan Renbaum reports on data provided to Maryland Reporter.com from the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development provided to MarylandReporter.com.
NEW, SWEEPING VACCINE REQUIREMENTS: A number of business officials and union leaders said Thursday that they supported— at least in principle — President Joe Biden’s new requirement that businesses with 100 or more workers have their employees vaccinated or tested weekly, Jeff Barker reports for the Sun.
- Montgomery County Public Schools will require all of its student-athletes in winter or spring sports to be vaccinated against COVID-19, Caitlynn Peetz reports for Bethesda Beat. The requirement is designed to prevent the spread of COVID in sports teams and ultimately the schools. The employees of the school system will be required to vaccinate and will no longer have the option to be tested weekly instead, she writes.
- Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszweksi is ordering all Baltimore County employees be fully or partially vaccinated by Oct. 15 or submit to weekly testing, WYPR reports.
- The Maryland Department of Health is planning on distributing $3 million in funds for a vaccine canvassing program where community organizations spread information and awareness to areas of the state that have lagging vaccination rates, Zeke Hartner reports for WTOP.
COVID CASES UP AT DORCHESTER JAIL: COVID numbers are relatively high in Dorchester County’s jail, Mike Detmer reports for The Easton Star-Democrat. Of the 101 active cases in Dorchester County, six people are currently hospitalized.
NEW CRANES ARRIVE AT PORT OF BALTIMORE: Four new cranes, some of the tallest in the world, completed a two months-long trek from China and arrived at the Port of Baltimore Thursday, Colin Campbell and Rose Wagner report for the Sun. The cranes, along with the Howard Street Tunnel expansion, will allow the port to double container capacity and allow trains to carry shipping containers stacked two-high, making it more competitive.
TOP REGION LEADERS MEET, DISCUSS BUSINESS CLIMATE: The D.C. mayor and governors from Maryland and Virginia assured local business leaders Thursday that they would cooperate closely as they plan for and build a post-pandemic economy, Karina Elwood reports for the Post from a panel hosted by the Northern Virginia Chamber of Commerce, the Washington Board of Trade and the Prince George’s Chamber of Commerce. Gov. Larry Hogan spoke about the labor shortage as the biggest challenge for small business.
***Transformation to the Grid of the Future: Regulators are implementing directives to transform the grid for the future. What impacts can ratepayers and consumers expect to result from FERC Order 2222 and the Maryland Order PC 44 process? This FREE webinar on September 14th examines the deployment of distributed resource markets for load balancing and reliability, and kicks off the Maryland Clean Energy Center’s Connecting to the Energy Economy Speaker Series.***
INDEPENDENT PANEL SET IN POLICE CUSTODY DEATH INVESTIGATION: Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh has selected an independent panel of experts from around the world to set the parameters for a review of police custody deaths, Ovetta Wiggins reports for the Post. The cases had been overseen by the state’s former chief medical examiner David Fowler, who testified for the defense in former police office Derek Chauvin’s trial in the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis.
INCREASING SEVERE WEATHER THREATS BRING GRID CHALLENGES: It is expensive to make the power grid resilient to severe weather threats like Hurricane Ida, Scott Dance examines for the Sun. New research suggests that massive power outages coinciding with extreme heat could expose the vast majority of Baltimore residents to illness-inducing temperatures inside their homes.
FLOATING WETLANDS COMING TO INNER HARBOR: The National Aquarium is trying to recreate the rich tidal marshes of the past by building an oasis of floating wetlands at the aquarium’s campus off Pratt Street, helping to bring natural habitats to the water, Elizabeth Shwe reports for Maryland Matters.
CASSILY DEFENDS HIMSELF IN ETHICS CASE: Facing potential disbarment, retired Harford County State’s Attorney Joseph Cassilly defended himself Thursday before Maryland’s top court, Steve Lash reports for The Daily Record. The Court of Appeals is hearing attorney Grievance Commission allegations that he withheld a potentially exculpatory report from the defense in a decades-old murder case and for misleading a judge about the study’s existence.
HOWARD MAN CONVICTED FOR THREATENING HARRIS: A Howard County man who threatened to kill U.S. Rep. Andy Harris was sentenced Thursday to serve eight consecutive weekends in jail and six months of home confinement, Michael Kunzelman reports for the AP. Sidhartha Kumar Mathur, 35, of West Friendship, sent the messages after Harris supported efforts to overturn the outcome of the 2020 presidential election based on unfounded claims of voter fraud.