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Maryland House leaders seek COVID-19 state of emergency amid delta variant

August 13th, 2021 by WCBC Radio

Maryland House leaders sent a letter to the governor, calling for him to reissue or issue a new state of emergency for COVID-19, citing rising cases due to the delta variant.

"You have demonstrated to the nation what masking and vaccination can accomplish, and we commend you on your swift steps early in the pandemic to try to contain the virus," the letter said. "Now is not the time to end the stated public health emergency — not only because of the limitations it will put on our state response but also because of the message that it sends to the public at large about the urgency of this situation, particularly as we prepare to send our children back to school."

In the letter dated Friday, House Speaker Adrienne Jones and Democratic leaders cited concerns over rates for adult day care and care for developmentally disabled, noting an administrative rate imposed during emergency needs to be restored so it can be stabilized.

"We need to continue the administrative rate for medical adult day care centers until they can re–open, census can be restored, and the industry can be stabilized," the letter said.

The governor lifted Maryland's state of emergency on July 1, but certain provisions remain under a 45-day grace period, which will expire Sunday. Those provisions include the eviction moratorium.

The leaders also called for continuing the Medicaid reimbursement for certain behavioral health telehealth services.