Friday Five | October 9, 2020

Each Friday, the Maryland Chamber will bring you the top five news stories from the intersection of business and government. Here are this week’s top five stories.

 1. Top Maryland officials urge Trump and Congress to resume stimulus talks

Three top Maryland officials who oversee the state’s finances issued a bipartisan call Wednesday for President Donald Trump and congressional leaders to resume talks on a new coronavirus economic stimulus package.

Additional aid to families, businesses, and local governments is “desperately needed,” said Republican Gov. Larry Hogan, speaking during a video meeting of Maryland’s Board of Public Works.

For more on this story, click here.

2. Trump says talks on COVID-19 aid are now ‘working out’

Two days after calling off coronavirus relief talks with Democrats, President Trump did a full 180-degree turn and said Thursday that he was now negotiating a “bigger deal” than a narrowly focused package to rescue airlines. But there was no evidence that the two sides had restarted talks on a broader, trillion-plus-dollar stimulus package, and the timing of Trump’s bullish remarks came on the Fox Business Network just before the markets opened.

Despite the pronouncement, Pelosi and Mnuchin have been busy fighting for an eleventh-hour lifeline for the decimated airline industry. The pair spoke twice by phone on Wednesday and were expected to talk again on Thursday.

Find the full story here.

3. Maryland Senate minority leader, minority whip won’t seek reelection to caucus positions

Maryland Senate Minority Leader J.B. Jennings and Senate Minority Whip Steve Hershey Jr. will not seek reelection to their caucus seats in the General Assembly.

Jennings, who represents District 7 in parts of Baltimore and Harford counties, said in a statement Tuesday night that after serving for six years, it’s “time for a new team to build on this success.”

For the full story, click here.

4. Maryland’s first Black GOP woman sworn in as state lawmaker

The first Black Republican woman to become a state legislator in Maryland was sworn into the House of Delegates on Tuesday.

House Speaker Adrienne Jones, a Democrat, swore in Del. Brenda Thiam in the House chamber in Annapolis.

Thiam was appointed by Gov. Larry Hogan to represent a district in Washington County in western Maryland to replace former Del. Paul Corderman, who was appointed to the state Senate.

Full story here.

5. Financial agreement gives State, Purple Line Partners last chance at negotiation

The state of Maryland, the consortium building the Purple Line, and the bank that is financing the rail project have formally agreed not to take any steps to collapse or otherwise alter the parties’ massive financing arrangement until the end of October.

The decision to retain the status quo — contained in a “forbearance agreement” obtained by Maryland Matters — creates a last-gasp opportunity for the Maryland Department of Transportation and Purple Line Transit Partners to reach an agreement on nearly $800 million in cost overruns, financial and legal experts said on Wednesday.

For the full story, click here.

Check out our Maryland Chamber Events Page for all of our Upcoming Webinars, Briefings, and Sponsored Events!

Upcoming calendar of legislative briefings and hearings

Tuesday, October 13, 2020

Wednesday, October 14, 2020

Wednesday, October 14, 2020

Thursday, October 15, 2020

Elections are right around the corner, are you ready?

The U.S. Chamber released a new resource center for tracking state voting guidelines. See the latest resources on voting in your state at #VoteForJobs

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