UMB’s President Jarrell Shares 2024 Legislative Session Report: UM Institute for Health Computing to Receive Funds

Gov. Wes Moore signs SB 376 on April 25, 2024, surrounded by UMB President Bruce E. Jarrell and UMCP President Darryll J. Pines, UM-IHC faculty and staff, legislative leaders, and state officials.

Published in The Elm | June 19, 2024

President’s Column: 2024 Legislative Session Report

It has been an exciting and fulfilling academic year at the University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB), and last month the Maryland General Assembly concluded its 446th legislative session. I want to report on some of its actions that are of particular interest to UMB.

First, I was glad to share the news that the governor’s Fiscal Year 2025 budget allocation includes a cost-of-living adjustment and merit pool for UMB employees. I am glad we can give salary increases to the best and brightest employees in Maryland who strive daily to improve the human condition and serve the public good!

I am pleased to announce significant allocations by the General Assembly this session to UMB’s operating budget, totaling $4.3 million in support of our mission, including:

  • $1.4 million grant for the School of Medicine’s (UMSOM) Rural Health Equity and Access Scholarship Program
  • $1 million grant to the School of Dentistry (UMSOD) for operating costs of an emergency dental clinic
  • $1 million grant to UMSOD for pediatric dental clinic services
  • $500,000 grant to UMB for the Erin Levitas Initiative for Sexual Assault Prevention at the Francis King Carey School of Law
  • $250,000 grant for Maryland Carey Law’s and the University of Baltimore School of Law’s Low-Income Taxpayer Clinics
  • $150,000 grant to UMSOM’s Center for Infant and Child Loss

The governor and the General Assembly’s Capital Budget also supported UMB through:

  • $1.638 million in funding for the new Dental Ambulatory Surgery Center
  • $3 million for FY25 to design, construct, renovate, and capital-equip laboratory and office space for the University of Maryland Institute for Health Computing (UM-IHC) at the North Bethesda Metro location
  • $26.73 million for our new School of Social Work building

We also can celebrate some key bills and budgetary allocations that significantly impact UMB.

In a significant win for UMB’s research initiatives, the legislature mandated annual funding for UM-IHC (MPower Joint Steering Council Funding, House Bill 334/Senate Bill 376). I advocated for this bill that secures vital resources to drive innovation in health care through innovative artificial intelligence technologies.

The Maryland Pediatric Cancer Fund and Commission (HB 51/SB 13) solidifies the establishment of the Pediatric Cancer Research Commission, directing competitive grants from the Maryland Pediatric Cancer Fund toward pediatric cancer research. Through the dedicated advocacy of Curt Civin, MD, director of the Center for Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine at UMSOM, UMB supported this pivotal initiative aimed at advancing breakthroughs in pediatric oncology. In addition, UMB advocated against an action within the governor’s FY25 budget that would have eliminated $5 million for this important fund.

Recognizing the need to safeguard the integrity of state contracts, UMB was responsible for drafting State Contracts – Prohibited Provisions (HB 289/SB 375), legislation to prohibit restrictive provisions that impede the state’s rights. With the endorsement of University Counsel Arthur “Skip” Rose, JD, this bill ensures equitable contractual agreements that align with Maryland’s legal framework.

The Tax Assistance for Low-Income Marylanders – Funding (HB 451/SB 676) legislation reinforces support for low-income Marylanders by enhancing funding for tax assistance programs. With Dean Renée McDonald Hutchins, JD, and clinical instructor Beverly Winstead, JD, advocating on behalf of Maryland Carey Law, this bill increases critical financial aid to underserved communities.

The extension of the state’s Live Near Your School program underscores UMB’s commitment to community development. With Dawn Rhodes, DBA, chief business and finance officer and senior vice president, championing this cause, UMB continues to foster neighborhood revitalization and homeownership opportunities for faculty, staff, and students.

Expanding the Seed Community Development Anchor Institution Fund – Alterations (HB 891/SB 418) amplifies UMB’s impact on community projects. With James Hughes, MBA, chief enterprise and economic development officer and senior vice president, advocating for this legislation, UMB stands poised to leverage resources for sustainable community initiatives.

I want to thank everyone who advocated and testified on UMB’s behalf. I especially want to thank Kevin Kelly, JD, chief government affairs officer and vice president, and our Office of Government Affairs, which serves as the University’s primary point of contact with state, federal, and local government officials and their staffs, as well as business and community stakeholders. Our collaborative efforts have yielded substantial legislative victories and secured critical funding for UMB’s mission.


Bruce E. Jarrell, MD, FACS