Maryland Gov. Wes Moore has signed into law bills to promote volunteerism, enhance the state workforce, and financially support education.
“Leaving no one behind means delivering a world-class education to all of our children, ensuring Marylanders are safe in their communities, and offering one-of-a-kind opportunities to serve,” Moore said.
SB 551 – The SERVE Act of 2023 – will establish the Department of Service and Civic Innovation, which will promote service and volunteerism, and create the Young Adult Service Year Option Pathway Fund.
HB 982 will create the Pilot Program for Human Services Careers, changing eligibility criteria for the Maryland Loan Assistance Repayment Program for Police Officers and the Maryland Police Officers Scholarship Program to include probation agents. It also establishes the Pilot Program for Human Services Careers Scholarship.
“Today, our administration is taking action that will set Maryland apart as a state that provides a quality K-12 education to its children, and a pathway for young people to serve their communities and gain real-world professional skills,” said Maryland Lt. Gov. Aruna Miller. “Our budget addresses the biggest issues facing Marylanders and is a game changer for Maryland families struggling with mental health challenges and substance use disorders.”
And the budget bill, HB 200, will give a record $8.7 billion to in Maryland’s K-12 public schools; a record $393 million for Maryland’s 15 local community colleges; and over $420 million in state support for Maryland’s historically black colleges and universities. The bill will also invest significantly in sectors including public safety, law enforcement, and healthcare. It puts in a record $1.3 billion in direct state support for mental health and substance use programs; $409 million to fund provider rate increases in the fields of behavioral health, developmental disabilities, Medicaid, and other services; more than $154 million to expand adult dental coverage to Medicaid clients; and $25 million to reduce waitlists for programs that allow seniors to age in their communities.