Government ethics reform is on the table throughout the Washington region, and much of it is overdue. …
In just three months at the end of 2019, former Baltimore mayor Catherine E. Pugh and former delegate Tawanna P. Gaines (Prince George’s) pleaded guilty to federal charges, and former delegate Cheryl D. Glenn (Baltimore City) was indicted on charges of bribery and wire fraud.
Hogan cited those cases in proposing legislation to increase the maximum state monetary penalty for bribery from $10,000 to $100,000. His bill also would strip taxpayer-funded pensions from lawmakers convicted of taking bribes.
“A pervasive culture of corruption continues to exist, and it is clear that even tougher and more stringent laws are needed,” Hogan said.
Joanne Antoine, executive director of Common Cause Maryland, said the Democratic-led legislature would probably “take some kind of action,” though Democrats have more than enough votes to block the governor’s proposal.
Antoine said Hogan “is in compliance with the law” and “is always disclosing these business dealings.” But, she added, “The concerns that the [Democratic] Party and public may have about whether he’s benefiting from these transportation policies are valid.”