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Governor Larry Hogan announces that he will introduce the Ethics and Accountability in Government Act the day before the General Assembly reconvenes in Annapoli

As Maryland’s lawmakers opened their annual legislative session on Wednesday, House of Delegates Speaker Adrienne A. Jones said she expects delegates will ask “tough questions” about Gov. Larry Hogan’s business dealings.

Jones, a Democrat, said a subcommittee of the Appropriations Committee would have jurisdiction to look into Hogan’s business affairs while in office. Since becoming governor in 2015, Hogan stepped aside from his Annapolis-based Hogan Cos. real estate business and turned his assets over to be managed by a trust.

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“We do have a committee that would be looking at that and may have a briefing as relates to that,” Jones said at an “Annapolis Summit” event hosted by The Daily Record.

In a later statement, Jones’ chief of staff, Alexandra Hughes, indicated that any questions about whether Hogan Cos. sites have benefited from state transportation projects could come as the committee reviews the administration’s transportation proposals as part of the regular budget process.

“Maryland’s Governor has the strongest budget and transportation authority of any governor in the country,” Hughes said. “The Speaker has instructed the House transportation subcommittee chairs to ask the tough questions to ensure that there is transparency and accountability for projects in the transportation budget.”

Senate President Bill Ferguson, however, said that while he’s concerned whether the governor is benefiting financially from his position, the matter is the purview of the State Ethics Commission.

Under an arrangement approved by the commission, Hogan pledged to have no input with the trustees who manage his assets, though he is allowed receive some information on his company’s finances and real estate dealings. Hogan Cos. is now run by the governor’s younger brother, Timothy Hogan.

“The governor has been open about the financial situation that he’s established with the ethics commission,” Ferguson said.

Some lawmakers are taking a renewed look at the Republican governor’s relationship with the Hogan Cos. after a report by Washington Monthly magazine this week revived questions about the governor’s business.

"We are completely transparent and every single thing that I have any interest in, we turn it over to the ethics commission, which is available to the public,” he said.

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