In Wake of U.S. Capitol Insurrection and Inauguration Security Threats, Maryland Congressional Delegation Urges President Biden to Approve Reimbursement for Emergency Inaugural Security

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 18, 2021
CONTACT: Daniel Jacobs
(202) 225-4016

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman John Sarbanes (D-Md.) today joined the Maryland Congressional Delegation in urging President Joe Biden to approve Maryland’s request for an emergency declaration in support of the state’s efforts to improve safety and security across the National Capitol Region for the 59th Presidential Inauguration.

Previous state requests for an emergency declaration were denied by President Trump in the waning days of his administration.

“[T]he breach and riots at the Capitol on January 6, 2021 demonstrated the need for additional coordination and planning leading up to the January 20 inauguration, due to potential threats in Washington, the National Capital Region (NCR) and state capitals such as Annapolis,” the lawmakers wrote. “Emergency operations centers at both the state and local levels activated to both monitor and coordinate necessary support."

The lawmakers continued: “Maryland took significant, necessary and reasonable preparations to ensure the overall safety of the public throughout the events surrounding the inauguration. We therefore request that you grant the State of Maryland’s appeal and approve the emergency declaration request.”

See below for a full copy of the letter.

* * *
February 18, 2021
 

The Honorable Joseph R. Biden, Jr.
The President of the United States
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, D.C. 20500
 

Dear President Biden:

We are writing as the Maryland Congressional Delegation to express our strong support for Maryland Governor Larry Hogan’s appeal of the denial of an emergency declaration for response actions directly related to the 59th Presidential Inauguration on January 20, 2021. The federal government denied this request on January 17, 2021.

Maryland began planning for potential impacts from the inauguration several months in advance of the event. However, the breach and riots at the Capitol on January 6, 2021 demonstrated the need for additional coordination and planning leading up to the January 20 inauguration, due to potential threats in Washington, the National Capital Region (NCR) and state capitals such as Annapolis. Emergency operations centers at both the state and local levels activated to both monitor and coordinate necessary support. Maryland took significant, necessary and reasonable preparations to ensure the overall safety of the public throughout the events surrounding the inauguration.

Several state and local government agencies incurred costs for in-state activities directly in response to the inauguration, including the Maryland Emergency Management Agency, the Maryland State Police and the Maryland Department of Transportation. After the incident at the Capitol on January 6, specialized law enforcement teams were placed on standby for response to potential threats both in the state and in the District of Columbia. Fortunately, and in part due to better preparations, we witnessed a peaceful transition on January 20, 2021.   

The State of Maryland continues to experience unprecedented fiscal challenges due to COVID-19. Inauguration response activities placed an additional burden on staffing levels throughout the state, as personnel performing emergency protecting measures for COVID-19 took on these added tasks. We therefore request that you grant the State of Maryland’s appeal and approve the emergency declaration request, following the work of state and local governments in conducting emergency protective measures (eligible under FEMA Public Assistance Category B) in direct support of the inauguration.

Thank you for your timely consideration of this request, and we look forward to your response.
 

Sincerely,

/signatures/

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