During the past few weeks, the Maryland General Assembly has been holding virtual hearings on dozens of legislative proposals. It’s been inspiring to hear people from all over the state—especially students—advocate for changes to make our community and the world a better place.
CLIMATE JUSTICE LEGISLATION HEARINGS Several important environmental initiatives are currently being considered by the General Assembly. Two of my bills, in particular, focus on environmental justice. As I do with all of my legislation, I am ensuring that equity is at the core of our climate policies. This is just one of the ways we are building a more just and inclusive Maryland. The House Economic Matters Committee recently held hearings on two of my bills. You can view the hearings here.
HB 31 will help expand microgrid development in low- and moderate-income neighborhoods. Microgrids are localized grids that can disconnect from the traditional grid and operate independently during extended electrical outages, such as outages caused by extreme weather events. My bill will expand the development of microgrids to serve as “resiliency hubs”, locations where residents can gather for heat or cooling, to charge medical devices and phones, refrigerate their medication, and generally to make it through extended grid outages from extreme weather events.
HB 88 requires the planning and regulations for the distribution grid to support Maryland’s goals of decarbonization, greenhouse gas reductions, renewable energy, equity, family-sustaining employment, energy resiliency and reliability, and cost-effectiveness in an inclusive and transparent manner.
This Thursday, February 10th, at 1:00 p.m., the House Economic Matters Committee is holding a hearing for another of my bills, HB 108. This bill helps low-income residents save energy and lower their energy costs by coordinating and consolidating a range of federal and state funding sources and increasing state funding for programs that invest in energy efficiency improvements for low-income households. STUDENTS SPEAKING UP FOR CLIMATE (and compost!) Last week the House Ways and Means Committee held a hearing for HB 150, another one of my climate bills. Falling at the intersection of climate and education, this bill creates a grant program to reduce food waste in schools. I am especially appreciative of and inspired by the students who shared their voices during the hearing. These students are working on this issue in their own schools and are now collaborating with me to enact composting programs across the state. You can hear about their efforts and their powerful words here. NEW MAP FOR STATE LEGISLATIVE DISTRICTS On January 27th, the House of Delegates approved a new legislative map that reflects data from the 2020 United States census. The Maryland General Assembly continues to have 47 districts. Each district has one state senator and three state delegates. District 20, which remains unchanged, covers downtown Silver Spring, Takoma Park, and White Oak. Our District 20 Senator is Will Smith and the three delegates are Lorig Charkoudian, David Moon, and Jheanelle Wilkins. We serve at-large, which means all three of us represent the entire district. More information about the new map is available here.
Not sure which district you are currently in? Check out MDelect.net. CONNECTING WITH COMMUNITY MEMBERS Several dedicated volunteers and I canvassed over 700 voters in the White Oak area this past weekend. My campaign also coordinated efforts with Everyday Canvassing to distribute information encouraging residents of the Enclave Apartments to get involved as Montgomery County begins to redevelop their neighborhood. I greatly appreciate the efforts of Everyday Canvassing to ensure all of our residents have a voice in community planning processes. Learn more about their great work at https://https://everydaycanvassing.org/. You can help me canvass any weekend in February and March. Please sign up here.
CASA IN ACTION'S ENDORSEMENT I am deeply honored to have been endorsed by CASA in Action, the Mid-Atlantic region’s largest immigrant rights organization. I look forward to continuing to work with them to pass progressive legislation that benefits immigrants and working families.
NEW WEBSITE Check out my new website, which just launched last week. You can find community resources, my legislation, various ways to get involved with my campaign, and more on the website. STAY IN TOUCH My staff and I want to hear from you. Please contact my office at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (410) 841-3423 if you or anyone you know needs assistance. We are here to serve.
Lorig Charkoudian Delegate Maryland General Assembly (District 20)