Waste of the Week: Scottish Rite Temple Preservation and Restoration
Welcome to the new legislative session in Maryland, same as the old legislative session. As the new session is now in order, let’s talk waste again. This week, I’m going to go to Baltimore City to discuss some waste proposed by Delegates Washington (D), Anderson (D), and McIntosh (D) in HB0048. They’re asking for $300,000 in new debt to be incurred by the state in order to loan money to the Board of Directors of the Maryland Scottish Rite Charitable Foundation in order to repair their Temple in Baltimore City.
The Scottish Rite Charitable Foundation is an organization of the Freemasons in Maryland. In accordance with their website, the Scottish Rite of Freemasonry has the following goals:
- Fulfill the promise of additional Masonic knowledge through education and training.
- Build a Positive Public Image of Freemasonry and the Scottish Rite.
- Support and expand our philanthropic activities.
- Provide a framework for effective leadership to ensure the stability and long-term success of the Fraternity.
- Provide a financial process to ensure the stability and long-term success of the Fraternity.
Now, let’s take a step back for a moment. How many of those are also goals of the state of Maryland? Is it the goal of the State of Maryland to expand the positive image of Freemasonry? Is it the goal of Maryland to enhance the long term success of this Fraternal order? Does the State have a vested interest in furthering education in Masonic knowledge? If you answered “No” to all of those questions, as I did, you have to ask yourself – why are we loaning them money to do the repairs of their Temple in the City of Baltimore? Good question.
What this is, is something else. It is legal bribery. That’s what all bond legislation is. It’s a means of legislators to bribe locals to support them by giving them something they want with your money. What business does the State have in handing out loans to private charitable organizations to further their causes? I do not care if it is legal to do so – it is not a legitimate action of the State and therefore it should not be done. As I will all session, I call upon our conservative members of the legislature to refrain from proposing or voting in favor of any bond legislation. Please fight against this local pork. Please vote against this absurd series of legislation.
For that set of reasons and the ridiculous amount of debt our state continues to carry, HB0048 is this week’s “Waste of the Week.”
Congratulations to Delegates Washington, Anderson, and McIntosh for desiring putting the state further in debt to gain votes in Baltimore City and for getting noted as the 2016 Legislative Session’s First Waste of the Week!
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Feel free to submit your suggestions in the comments section of wasteful spending in Maryland.