In May, Gov. Larry Hogan announced he would be withholding $68 million in state money that the General Assembly had earmarked for Maryland public schools, intending to put some of it toward the state pension fund. With analysts projecting Maryland to end fiscal 2016 with a surplus of $519.7 million, is it time for Hogan to release the cash?
The Baltimore Sun‘s editorial board says yes. The Sun argues that in light of the larger-than-expected surplus and a cap of $50 million dollars in unallocated funds that can be put toward the pension fund, Hogan has run “out of excuses” to hold onto the money.
But, despite the urgency of the rhetoric — and the logic of the argument! — Hogan’s political situation doesn’t appear all that precarious. The Republican governor’s approval rating was at 54 percent in October — well after his clash with the General Assembly over the education funds had made headlines. He may be “out of excuses,” but on the other hand, he may not need any.
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