The good news for many this week is the anticipation that a $900 billion stimulus package will be signed into law. Beyond the continuation of unemployment benefits and direct paymentS of $600 for every American earning less than $75,000 a year, this relief bill adds critically needed funding for vaccine development and distribution, school and small business assistance, and rent help for many.
The bad news is that the bill lacks any support for state and local governments.
Mayors and governors have not been silent about their budget shortfalls nor the consequences of inaction. But in order for the December aid bill to pass, the estimated $1 trillion dollar need for local government was removed.
That news didn’t sit well with Michael Sanderson, the Maryland Association of Counties’ executive director. While he didn’t hesitate to praise lawmakers in approving this much-needed support, the lack of funding for the State’s counties he represents is troubling.
In his Spy interview yesterday, Sanderson outlines his major concerns, which center on anticipated tax increases, public-sector layoffs, and spending cuts to public programs if the federal government doesn’t take action in early 2021.
This video is approximately nine minutes in length. For more information about the Maryland Association of Counties please go here.