Maryland is a great place to live, work, and raise a family. We have the Nation’s best schools, safe and vibrant communities, along with strong, thriving businesses. These are important to the people of Maryland and, as your State Senator, Senator Ulysses Currie has always strived to improve and protect the quality of life we value. As a senior member of the Budget & Taxation Committee, Senator Currie has worked to ensure that Prince Georges County receives the funding needed to help create jobs, build new schools, expand healthcare, and fight against foreclosures.
There are no easy answers to the challenges we face, but as your State Senator, Senator Currie will continue to take your ideas and concerns to Annapolis, collaborate with legislators from all across Maryland, and build consensus towards new solutions that bring real results home to Prince George’s County.
Fighting for Maryland workers
“The Maryland Legislature did the right thing for its workers today by increasing the state minimum wage to $10.10 an hour. Maryland’s important action is a reminder that many states, cities and counties – as well as a majority of the American people – are way ahead of Washington on this crucial issue. I applaud Governor O’Malley and the state legislature for leading by example and giving more Maryland workers the raise they deserve.” – President Barack Obama
During the 2014 Legislative Session Senator Currie introduced a bill to raise our State’s minimum wage to $10.10 an hour with the hope of helping Marylanders who are living paycheck to paycheck earn a more livable wage. Working with Governor O’Malley and Lt. Governor Anthony Brown, the General Assembly passed legislation that expanded the minimum wage to $10.10 by June 2018.
A more livable minimum wage is an essential part of getting our economy moving again, and helping our citizens make ends meet. Increasing our State’s minimum wage to $10.10 an hour will directly benefit over 450,000 Maryland workers and their families, over 65% of whom are women – many single mothers. With the worst recession in memory still being felt across the country, this increase in hourly pay will provide some very much-needed assistance and relief to a growing number of Marylanders who are living paycheck to paycheck due to the weak economic recovery.
As a former Educator with over 30 years of service here in Prince George’s County Senator Currie knows firsthand the challenges our schools are facing. Using his experience as a guide, Senator Currie has been a leader on education, by expanding early childhood education, helping K-12 schools achieve excellence, and making college accessible and affordable by creating the 2+2 College Transfer Program to help keep the cost of a four-year degree down. Like many in our community, Senator Currie believes that providing our children with a high quality education should be our top priority. That is why Senator Currie has been endorsed by the Prince George’s County Education Association and the Maryland State Education Association for this year’s elections.
By working with our teachers, we have been able to continue to give them the resources we need – including a fairer wage, collective bargaining rights, and increased budgets for K-12 education. Investing in K-12 and our teachers is critical for the future of our county, and that is why Senator Currie led the fight to solve the issue of Net Taxable Income (NTI), which was cheating Prince George’s County out of millions of additional education dollars. Working with Lt. Governor Brown, County Executive Baker, and Delegate Derrick Davis, Senator Currie and his colleagues were able to close the NTI loophole, securing $30-$40 million a year for our schools in addition to the early $1 billion in school funding and $27.6 billion in school construction money Prince George’s County received this year alone.
Protecting our families by passing strict gun safety laws
After the tragedy at Sandy Hook, the NRA and its allies fought against stricter gun safety laws on the state and federal levels. Senator Currie joined with Governor O’Malley and Lt. Governor Brown to stand up to the NRA and its Republican allies to pass stricter gun safety laws. These laws will reduce the amount of assault weapons on our streets, and require common-sense requirements including registration for those who purchase handguns, and a ban on magazine capacity size and other common-sense provisions. Senator Currie cosponsored this bill and was a strong supporter of this legislation.
Expanding Healthcare Access under President Obama’s Affordable Care Act
As a member of the Senate Budget & Taxation, Senator Currie has been a strong proponent of increased funding for the Affordable Care Act. Under his leadership, Maryland has expanded Medicaid funding to over 600,000 Marylanders. Working with Lt. Governor Anthony Brown, Senator Currie has worked to make certain that President Obama’s signature achievement works, and that people have the healthcare coverage they deserve.
Fighting against foreclosures
As the recession hit, our community – like many throughout the country – were hit with a rash of foreclosures. Under the leadership of Governor O’Malley and Senator Currie, Maryland passed legislation to create the Homeowners Preserving Equity program also known as MD HOPE. If you are late on your Mortgage or are in fear of undergoing foreclosure, MD HOPE created opportunities for foreclosure mediation, and stopped some of the worst practices of banks and other businesses. MD HOPE has a website with helpful information ranging from tips to avoiding fraud to foreclosure mediation for those who need it, and more. You can access their website by clicking here or call them at 1-877-462-7555.
Good Government Reforms & Elections
Senator Currie knows that for government to work, government must work for the people. That is why Senator Currie supported legislation to create a system of public financing for county elections. In addition, Senator Currie supported increased disclosure for shadowy Independent Expenditure groups, and closed the infamous LLC loophole to crack down on outside spending in elections. In addition, after a spate of local scandals, Senator Currie supported increased ethic reforms, transparency, and restrictions on campaign donations on the local level to ensure that local developers cannot have an oversized influence in county politics.
Senator Currie understands that transparency includes increased transparency in the legislature. As a Senator, Senator Currie has supported the broadcasting of Senate committee hearings so all Marylanders can hear the debate not just on the Senate floor, but in committees as well. In addition, Senator Currie supported legislation that puts all state spending online within easy access of all Marylanders.
Elections need to be accessible to all Marylanders. Senator Currie was a strong supporter of expanding access to the polling place via early and absentee voting, and supported legislation that will create Same-Day Registration during early voting, beginning in 2016. To find early vote locations and hours in Prince George’s County, please click here.