ANNAPOLIS, MD (AP) – The Maryland General Assembly opened its annual 90-day legislative session on Wednesday with lawmakers set to wrestle with budget challenges and measures on affordable housing and public safety. Maryland is facing a projected deficit of $761 million in the next fiscal year. That is expected to balloon to about $2.7 billion in fiscal year 2029. Looming deficits have prompted some talk in Annapolis about raising taxes. Senate President Bill Ferguson said he doesn’t believe tax increases are on the table this year, especially when other states are talking about tax cuts. House Speaker Adrienne Jones said taxes should only be raised if “absolutely necessary.” However, the speaker pointed out that statewide transportation projects are at risk of being significantly underfunded.