Legislative Update 2.8.16


The Maryland General Assembly has been in session since mid-January. As in past years, the first few weeks allow most legislators to research and file their bills, easing themselves into the regular order of the session. Now that a few weeks have passed, things are heating up. The Senate has over 500 bills introduced, and the House of Delegates has over 600. There are several “hot button” topics, issues that either have bills already pending or soon will.

Death with dignity – HB 404

  • Terminally ill patients working with their physician in order to end their life

Downtown Hotel Project

  • The Frederick Delegation recently voted 5-3 to freeze the hotel/motel tax rate at 3%. Advocates for the downtown hotel were hoping that the County Council would retain their legislative prerogative to adjust the rate, but a majority of the Delegation disagreed. Next up, the Delegation will meet on Wednesday, February 10 to hear from both sides on the economic impacts of the downtown hotel. Following those presentations, it’s anticipated that the Delegation will vote on the MD Stadium Authority’s involvement with the project on Friday, February 12.

Employer-paid sick leave – HB 740

Expanding the medical marijuana program

  • Natalie M. Laprade Commission is scheduled to issue grower, processor, dispenser licenses later this year

Extending maternity benefits

Prison reform (bipartisan)

  • Reducing or commuting sentences for nonviolent offenders (principally drug addicts)

Redistricting reform – HB 458

  • Gov. Hogan wants a nonpartisan panel to draw districts
  •  Legislative leaders don’t want to give up the power to draw district lines

 Reducing mandated spending

  • Gov. Hogan wants to reduce the amount of spending mandates in the general fund
  • Claims .83 cents of every dollar is mandated in advance
  • Those mandates are in the areas of education, Medicaid and public safety

School start date

  • Legislators from certain vacation-based districts are likely to propose delaying school start dates until after Labor Day. Supported by the Comptroller.
  • Expect local school officials to be opposed, if not strongly so.

Tax breaks

  • Hogan proposes business tax cuts
  • Augustine Commission, created by the General Assembly, also proposing to reduce the corporate tax burden
  • Legislative budget leaders are concerned about losing revenue for priority programs

The Frederick County Legislative Delegation has already held several meetings to deal with the County legislative package, the Liquor License Commission requests and a bill to freeze the hotel tax at 3%.

Contact the Frederick County Delegation

Ronald N. Young (D)
State Senator
District 3
Ph: 301-858-3575
Fx: 301-858-3193
Michael J. Hough (R)
State Senator
District 4
Ph: 301-858-3704
Carol L. Krimm (D)
House of Delegates
Subdistrict 3A
Ph: 301-858-3472
Karen Lewis Young (D)
House of Delegates
Subdistrict 3A
Ph: 301-858-3436
William Folden (R)
House of Delegates
District 3B
Ph: 301-858-3240
Kathy Afzali (R)
House of Delegates
District 4
Ph: 301-858-3288
Fx: 301-858-3184
Barrie S. Ciliberti (R)
House of Delegates
District 4
Ph: 301-858-3080
David E. Vogt, III (R)
House of Delegates
District 4
Ph: 301-858-3118

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