July 21, 2016
By Sarah Gantz, The Baltimore Sun
Baltimore signed an agreement Tuesday with the U.S. Department of Energy and the Maryland Clean Energy Center to develop a financing model to make solar energy more accessible to low-income residents.
Existing financing options for installing solar panels require a large up-front investment or high credit ratings, which can be prohibitive for many low-income homeowners. Details of Baltimore's financing model are still to be determined, but city officials said the goal will be to eliminate some of the barriers that prevent low-income residents from making the investment — as much as $15,000 for a typical Baltimore rowhouse.
"We want to prove the clean-energy revolution in our country can be designed to include everyone," said David Foster, a senior adviser at the Energy Department.
The new program eventually could serve as a national model, he said.
Foster was among the officials and lawmakers, including Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake and Reps. Elijah E. Cummings and John Sarbanes, who announced plans for the program outside a Belair-Edison home selected to receive solar panels as part of another city initiative to install solar panels in low-income areas.
July 19, 2016
American women have always been on the front lines of voting rights, civil rights, and human rights. Today in 1848 women gathered in Seneca Falls, NY for the first women’s rights convention where they discussed the social, civil, and religious rights of women.
We have come a long way in the fight for women’s rights in America but we still have a ways to go. Today women still make less than their male counterparts in the workplace and aren’t always able to take maternity leave. These and other issues that affect women and working families could be addressed more often if we had more women in elected office.
One way to achieve this goal is to have citizen-owned elections, it’s been proven in places like Connecticut that once you give average Americans the ability to run and win seats in office their voices are heard and legislation can be passed to benefit the broader society.
That’s why I authored the Government By the People Act, and am a strong supporter of the Disclose Act and the effort to overturn Citizens United.
July 18, 2016
This year’s theme for Artscape was Space. It was great to wander around this annual festival and see how people interpreted that theme in different ways. There was everything from large planet models you could walk inside of to cool off to fellow festival goers dressed up as aliens.
Visitors this year had a wide variety of activities to choose from with concerts to listen to, plays to watch, new video games to play, and local artwork to admire. I enjoyed the performance by the Orchkids at the Meyerhoff which is becoming an Artscape tradition.
Artscape always brings out the creative side of Baltimore and I’m pleased that this year’s festival was such a success!
July 7, 2016
June 30, 2016
By Lowell Melser, WBAL
Democratic members of Maryland's congressional delegation gather in an attempt to maintain pressure on the issue of gun safety legislation.
Maryland gun-safety advocates met in Baltimore to support tougher laws connected to gun violence, setting up what could be an interesting debate next week on Capitol Hill.
After last week's sit-in on the House floor, many of Maryland's Democratic members of Congress, along with gun violence prevention advocates and victims of gun violence, made an attempt to keep up the pressure on the issue, addressing a crowd in north Baltimore.
Kate Ranta talked about being stalked by her ex-husband, who shot her and her father.
"My son, who is 7 now, but 4 at the time, stood screaming, 'Don't do it, Daddy, don't shoot Mommy,' witnessing the whole thing. It was luck that no bullets entered his tiny body," Ranta said.
Sheryl Baughman lost her son to suicide. She said she believes that a waiting list for the mentally unstable might have saved him.
"Had they made him wait, maybe whatever circumstances were going on in his life that day could have been different," Baughman said.
Maryland's Democratic political leaders also used the forum to call out Republicans for not working with them on gun legislation, but they had trouble giving reasons why no such legislation passed when Democrats had control over the House and Senate in President Obama's first two years in office.
"I can't answer the question. I was on the intelligence committee, so I wouldn't have dealt with that to begin with, but I know it has always been an issue," said U.S. Rep. Dutch Ruppersberger, D-District 2.
Others blamed a supposed stronghold by the National Rifle Association over Congress at the time.
"The tide is turning, and the intimidation factor that operated on all of Congress at one point has begun to shift," said U.S. Rep. John Sarbanes, D-District 3.
June 23, 2016
By John Fritze, The Baltimore Sun
House Democrats frustrated over the lack of progress on a gun control measure staged a "sit-in" on the floor Wednesday, saying they would refuse to yield unless GOP leaders allow a vote on a "no-fly, no buy" proposal.
The effort comes a week after Democrats launched a filibuster on the Senate floor in order to prompt a vote on similar legislation, which ultimately failed. Democrats have renewed their push for gun control measures in the wake of the Orlando night club shooting.
Led by Rep. John Lewis, a Georgia Democrat, several dozen lawmakers sat on the floor of the House, which quickly went into recess -- a move that shuts off live coverage of the chamber by CSPAN.
Every Democratic member of Maryland's congressional delegation joined the sit in, including Sens. Barbara A. Mikulski and Ben Cardin.
"Congress has a basic duty to protect the American people, and that means putting in place commonsense gun safety laws that could help reduce the frequency and carnage of mass shootings in America," said Rep. John Sarbanes of Baltimore County.
May 26, 2016
Thank you so much to everyone who came out to the Sarbanes Family picnic. My dad and I were happy to see so many good friends made the trip out even in the rain! We look forward to doing this again.
May 20, 2016
Rep. John Sarbanes will serve on a conference committee charged with reconciling the vastly different opioid addiction bills passed by the House and Senate, offering him an opportunity to help address one of Baltimore's most intractable problems.
Sarbanes, a Baltimore County Democrat who represents portions of Baltimore City, was named to the conference committee Tuesday by House leaders. The five-term lawmaker was one of the few Democrats to shepherd a bill through the House last week intended to mitigate a national increase in heroin and prescription drug overdoes.
May 19, 2016Due to the rainy forecast we have moved the location of the picnic indoors to Ridgely’s Run Community Center.Date: May 21, 2016Time: 1PM - 4PMMy dad and I will give brief remarks around 2:30pmLocation: Ridgely’s Run Community Center8400 Mission Rd, Jessup, MD 20794Directions: From 95 take exit 41 towards MD 175 E/Jessup. Turn right onto US-1 South. Turn Right onto Mission Road. The community center will be on your right, look for the blue and white Sarbanes signs.My dad and I are looking forward to seeing everyone on Saturday!Thanks for all of your support!
May 19, 2016
By John Fritze, The Baltimore Sun
Members of Baltimore's congressional delegation on Monday touted a package of bills passed recently by the House of Representatives intended to address the national opioid abuse epidemic, but they also pointed to the shortcomings of that legislation -- including a lack of funding.
The House and Senate have both approved bipartisan legislation on heroin and prescription drug abuse, but the packages are substantially different. Both measures, which now must be resolved by a yet-to-be-appointed conference committee, do not include new money to pay for the programs lawmakers envision.
Rep. John Sarbanes of Baltimore County was the original sponsor of one of the House-passed bills. His proposal would encourage and train doctors to prescribe overdose reversal drugs, such as Naloxone, when they prescribe pain medication and other opioids.
May 6, 2016
On Wednesday I had the opportunity to be on WYPR’s Maryland Morning. Click here to hear my interview with Tom Hall.
April 27, 2016
Thank you to everyone who voted for me to be the Democratic nominee for Maryland’s 3rd Congressional District. I am proud to serve the people of Maryland and look forward to continuing to work hard for you.
April 23, 2016
David Ignatius, The Washington Post
It has become a truism that the American political system is suffering from dysfunction. But weirdly, even the insurgent candidates, Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders, don’t talk much about how they would fix it. This is a populist insurgency without a clear manifesto.
So it’s refreshing to hear Rep. John Sarbanes (D-Md.) present a detailed action plan to try to repair what’s broken. This proposal isn’t a cure-all. It wouldn’t fix the immigration problem or fund Social Security or fight terrorism. But by changing the way we fund elections, this proposal could make it easier to elect the politicians who would make the U.S. government work again for its citizens.
Sarbanes presents his proposal in the current issue of the Harvard Journal on Legislation. It’s a simple idea: Congress should free itself from big-money, special-interest domination by encouraging an alternative system of small contributions that would be matched with public funds. This isn’t a new idea — Teddy Roosevelt proposed a version back in 1907 — but it’s a good one, and a way to start curing what ails us.
March 31, 2016
Last night I was able to stop by the Light City Neighborhood Lights installation in Hampden, which is located in the Third District. Below is my interview with MICA faculty member Diana Reichenbach who put together an amazing interactive community art piece.
March 29, 2016
Light City is kicking off this week in Baltimore and I am very excited for all of the various parts of the third district (the Inner Harbor, Harbor East, Little Italy, Fells Point, & Hampden) that will be participating!
Baltimore was the 1st city in America to light our streets with gas lanterns proving that we’ve always been a city of innovators! I am excited to see an event come together that will show the rest of the country why so many young people and start ups are starting to call Baltimore home.
If you'd like more information on Light City click here to see their full list of events!
February 25, 2016
Thank you to the Maryland and District of Columbia AFL-CIO for endorsing my bid for re-election. I am proud to be part of the labor team. We need to make sure that the issues which affect working people are front and center during this election cycle.
February 17, 2016
I am happy to announce that I will be running for re-election in Maryland’s 3rd Congressional District.
February 15, 2016
"This will launch an educational partnership around the Star-Spangled Banner National Historic Trail," Sarbanes said. TTEC aims to educate students about the state's role in the War of 1812 by getting them out of the classroom and onto historic sites.
February 11, 2016
“The Star-Spangled Banner National Historic Trail is an important connection to the outdoors and a vital link to our local history,” Sarbanes said in a statement. “With the support of the National Park Service, more Maryland teachers will be able to provide students with rich, hands-on learning experiences about our local history and about protecting our local trails and public lands.”
February 10, 2016
Now, our nation's leaders are calling it a public health crisis that has reached epidemic proportions. It is getting so bad that it is getting attention from Hollywood to the halls of Congress. Even the president is getting aggressive in the fight.