Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot, noting the ailing economy largely due to the coronavirus pandemic, wants to give qualifying residents $2,000 each and $250 million to small businesses through the state’s rainy day fund.
“It’s not only raining outside, it’s also a tornado, a hailstorm, a hurricane and a tsunami all at once,” the comptroller said, WUSA-TV (Channel 9) reported.
Franchot, who launched his 2022 gubernatorial bid this month, said the rainy day fund has more than $1.2 billion and called for Gov. Larry Hogan and the Maryland General Assembly to use $750 million of the fund for eligible individual residents to get $2,000.
Franchot said eligibility requirements for the $2,000 would be to earn $50,000 or less as a single filer or $100,000 or less a year as a couple, WUSA reported. Franchot said the $2,000 could be used to help Marylanders buy food, pay rent and seek medical care.
Hogan responded to Franchot’s plan by saying “in addition to the $600 million in emergency economic relief the state has provided, [the governor] will pursue a larger stimulus relief package when the General Assembly returns for the 2021 session,” WUSA reported.
Franchot countered Hogan by saying he hopes his ideas will be incorporated into the governor’s plans.
As of Thursday, Maryland has roughly 277,000 coronavirus cases and 5,727 virus-related deaths, according to the state health department.