“How could a judge turn you into something that you’re not?” was the question that Bryan Stevenson asked himself. In his widely acclaimed Ted Talk, “We Need to Talk About an Injustice”, Stevenson recounts his consternation and exhaustion as he stands before his fourteen year old client, clearly a child, and wonders at the “magic power” the judge has used to turn this child into an adult in his courtroom. Stevenson goes on to describe how, in an effort to grab some of that “magic power” for himself, he files a motion to try his “poor 14 year old black male client like a privileged, white, 75 year old corporate executive.”Read more
February 16, 2018 - The League of Women Voters of Maryland and Common Cause Maryland were pleased to testify in favor of SB 190 Election Law - International Election Observers. International observers have been visiting polling places in the United States to learn about our election processes for decades. They come through programs sponsored by organizations such as the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs, the International Foundation for Electoral Systems and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe. This is considered a valuable democracy-building practice.Read more
Fund It, Fix It
A coalition of nonprofits supporting dedicated funding for Metro
January 18, 2018
On August 3, 2015, EPA announced the Clean Power Plan (CPP) to strengthen the move toward cleaner and lower-polluting energy by establishing standards for power plants and customized goals for states to cut carbon pollution. A Fact Sheet, Clean Power Plan, is still available from the previous EPA website.
In October 2017, Scott Pruitt, Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, announced repeal of the Clean Power Plan, a key program to reduce carbon emissions from coal fired power plants and to help meet the U.S. goals under the Paris Climate Agreement.Read more
From General Priorities to Specific Legislation
Now that we have established our general legislative priorities, we are gearing up to support specific legislation. Here are just a few examples.
Election Day Registration (EDR) legislation is a Constitutional Amendment authorizing the General Assembly to put in place procedures that would allow voters to register to vote on Election Day in the same way they can during early voting. During the 2016 elections, nearly 20,000 Marylanders registered to vote or updated their registrations. Passing the legislation in this session would allow a vote on the amendment in the November 2018 General Election.Read more
Environmental organizations in The Citizens Campaign for the Environment (CCE) will support four topics for potential legislation in the 2018 Maryland General Assembly. LWVMD 2018 Priorities for “Protecting the Environment” are mitigating climate change, increasing the use of clean renewable energy, and ensuring safe water and clean waterways. We’ll be joining efforts to advance the CCE priority topics. Contact Betsy Singer, LWVMD Environment Chair if you would like to participate.
According to the Chesapeake Bay Foundation (CBF), “The Forest Conservation Act is not currently living up to its primary objectives of minimizing forest loss and conserving the state’s best forests when it comes to intact, fully forested parcels proposed for development.” CBF finds that the Act should be updated by prioritizing protection of contiguous forests that provide intact forest ecosystems and are very limited in urban and suburban communities. Replanting formulas would be adjusted in order to lessen overall deforestation and existing mitigation systems, such as forest banking, will be improved.Read more
Lawmakers, Everyone Votes MD Coalition Endorse Policies to Expand, Protect Voting Rights
Press Release: December 5, 2017
Annapolis, Md. – Everyone Votes MD, a coalition of good government, civil rights, and grassroots activists, joined lawmakers on Tuesday in support of bills to protect and expand access to voting in Maryland.Read more
The League of Women Voters of the National Capital Area (LWVNCA) is made up of the state Leagues of Virginia and Maryland, the League of Women Voters of the District of Columbia, the local Maryland Leagues of Frederick, Howard, Montgomery, and Prince George’s; and the local Virginia Leagues of Arlington, Fairfax, Loudoun, and Falls Church. In the Fall of 2016 the LWVNCA Board voted to adopt Metro Funding as an advocacy priority...
Across the nation redistricting reform has won the spotlight this year among good government advocates, editorial teams, many important political figures, and even SCOTUS has gotten in on the action. LWVMD has been harnessing this energy to push for reform of the Maryland redistricting process in 2018 - regardless of what the rest of the nation may do. LWVMD believes in, and has been working for, a government that best represents ALL Marylanders, and that can only be achieved when election districts are drawn with the interests of the people are the primary consideration.
However, as it stands, Maryland’s redistricting process allows, and has employed for many years, tactics to favor or disfavor political parties and political incumbents - a.k.a. Gerrymandering.
LWVMD is joined in this effort by other good government advocates that form the coalition Tame the Gerrymander. The coalition work we’ve done this past year has been focused on dramatically increasing the awareness of the need to end practice of partisan gerrymandering in Maryland THIS YEAR.
Press Release from Working Matters Coalition of which LWVMD is a member -> originally posted here http://www.earnedsickdaysmd.org/?page_id=1515
The Healthy Working Families Act (HB1) would expand access to earned paid sick days to more than 700,000 Maryland families.
Annapolis, Maryland (October 23rd, 2017) – Working families from across Maryland and delegates from every corner of the state continue to build the strong momentum needed to override Gov. Larry Hogan’s veto of the Healthy Working Families Act – HB1. As the override vote approaches a coalition of 160 organizations, Working Matters, is grateful for the 87 delegates who voted to pass HB1 and now have pledged their support to override the Governor’s veto – enough votes to secure an override in the House.Read more