Legislative Tracker – 8 Jan 2020

Greetings,

 

Welcome to the 441st session of the Maryland General Assembly!

 

I would like to report that the Maryland Military Coalition has digitally delivered our 2020 legislative goals to 100% of our Senators and Delegates! I’ll start walking the halls and saying howdy on Thursday. That said, I encourage my fellow MMC members to meet with your districts’ legislators, hand them a copy of our goals, and tell them why it matters. They want to see their constituents more than they want to see me!

 

Our goals are attached for your reference. I have also included a Goals & Objectives document that shows how the current bills align with our goals, as well as the break-down on the pre-filed bills in case you haven’t already received.

 

Headlines:

·         While this newsletter format hasn’t changed since last session, a few other things have. I am now writing this item for the Maryland Military Coalition (MMC)! That said, I still love my friends at AARP Maryland and look forward to meeting their new Veterans Advocate!

·         The MMC now has Facebook and Twitter pages, and I have started a Free State Veterans blog. Check out the blog for an item on the military retirement pay income tax subtraction.

·         On that note, be sure check out the report “A Study of Employment in the State’s Defense Industry” from the Towson University Regional Economic Studies Institute!

·         While you were away, the Center for a New American Security issued a report, “From Sea to Shining Sea” that provides a state-by-state breakdown of benefits for Veterans! Check it out!

·         Did you realize that Veterans suicide is still a BIG PROBLEM? Yes, it is! In fact more Veterans have killed themselves in the past ten years than the number of Service members killed in the Vietnam War! I believe we need that Suicide Prevention Comprehensive Action Plan as soon as possible and some $ to go along with it!

·         Well done to Pat Guibao, Chairman of the Legislative Commission for the American Legion Department of Maryland for conducting an EXCEPTIONAL legislative workshop for his Legionnaires this past Saturday! Thanks for letting me attend!

·         Congratulations to Senators Simonaire and Smith, and Delegate Pat Young for receiving the American Legion Department of Maryland’s “Legislator of the Year” awards for their stalwart support of Veterans issues last session!

·         It was great to update the Prince George’s County Commission for Veterans on our 2020 legislative goals on Monday evening. Thanks to Dr. James Dula and Commissioner Brad Jewitt for allowing me to participate!

·         Now on to the main event! Unlike last session, we actually have pre-filed bills of interest, eight in fact. Just in case you haven’t seen it, I attached our breakdown on what these bills mean. As all fall within our goals, MMC endorses these bills and will support!

·         Hearings! There are a few bills of interest already scheduled for hearings in the Senate! In fact on Thursday, Pat Guibao, representing the American Legion, and yours truly, representing the MMC, will be testifying in support of Senator Ron Young’s SB 59 before the Senate Budget and Taxation Committee!

·         Expect another legislation tracker update on Saturday if there are significant changes in next week’s schedule.

 

Bill Count:

# Senate Bills submitted:  122

# House Bills submitted:  57

 

New Bills: NTR

 

This week in Annapolis:

·         Thursday, 9 January

o    Senate Budget & Taxation – 2:00 p.m.

§  SB 59 (Sen. Young) – “Slots” for Homeless Veterans Act | MMC & American Legion Support

 

Next week in Annapolis:

·         Wednesday, 15 January

o    Senate Budget & Taxation – 1:00 p.m.

§  SB 109 (Sen. Ellis) – Disabled Active Duty Service Members, Disabled Veterans, and Surviving Spouses - Exemption From Property Tax and Other Charges and Refunds

 

Other Events:

·         Check to see when your County Delegation starts its weekly meetings. I only track that for Prince George’s County, which scheduled for Friday, 10 January at 0900 in the Lowe House Office Building, Room 150.

 

Carpe Diem! 


Take care,

 

Brian T. Smith

Vice President

Maryland Military Coalition

 

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter

 

Check out Free State Veterans blog and Twitter!

 

 

Number/
Chapter
(Cross File)
Total: 8

Title

Primary Sponsor

Status

Original House Committee(s) and
Hearing Dates

Opposite House Committee(s) and
Hearing Dates

HB0012

Department of Veterans Affairs - Homes for Veterans - Veterans of Uniformed Service

Delegate Rogers

First Reading Health and Government Operations

Health and Government Operations

HB0032

General Provisions - Commemorative Days - Welcome Home Korean War Veterans Day

Delegate Chang

First Reading House Rules and Executive Nominations

Rules and Executive Nominations

SB0020

General Provisions - Commemorative Days - Tuskegee Airmen Commemoration Day

Senator Patterson

First Reading Education, Health, and Environmental Affairs

Education, Health, and Environmental Affairs

SB0025

Hunting and Fishing Licenses - Active Military, Former Prisoners of War, Recipients of the Purple Heart Award, and Disabled Veterans

Senator Simonaire

First Reading Education, Health, and Environmental Affairs

Education, Health, and Environmental Affairs

SB0059

State Lottery - Instant Ticket Lottery Machines - Fraternal Organizations ("Slots" for Homeless Veterans Act)

Senator Young

Hearing 1/09 at 2:00 p.m.

Budget and Taxation
1/9/2020 - 2:00 p.m.

SB0084

Funeral Establishments and Crematories - Unclaimed Cremains of Veterans - Notification, Disposition, and Reporting

Senator Simonaire

First Reading Education, Health, and Environmental Affairs

Education, Health, and Environmental Affairs

SB0090

Maryland Veterans Service Animal Program - Definitions

Senator Simonaire

First Reading Education, Health, and Environmental Affairs

Education, Health, and Environmental Affairs

SB0109

Disabled Active Duty Service Members, Disabled Veterans, and Surviving Spouses - Exemption From Property Tax and Other Charges and Refunds

Senator Ellis

Hearing 1/15 at 1:00 p.m.

Budget and Taxation
1/15/2020 - 1:00 p.m.

 

Here are some additional documents of interest from the Maryland Military Commission:

- Pre-filed bills of interest

- Legislative Goals and Objectives