2017 Legislative Wrap-Up

2017 Legislative Wrap-Up

Delegate Dereck E. Davis – 25th District

2017 Legislative Wrap-up

 

 

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

 

Thank you for allowing me to represent the 25th Legislative District as a delegate in the Maryland General Assembly.  It is an honor and a privilege to work for the citizens of Prince George’s County on legislation, constituent concerns, and community issues.  I fight for middle class and working families, job creation, expanded health care coverage for Marylanders, and businesses growth and development.

 

Below I have provided a brief summary of legislation, local and statewide, that passed during the 2017 Legislative Session.

 

2018 Budget Appropriations to Prince George’s County (funds provided by the legislature, funded at the discretion of the Governor)

 

K-12 Education $1.1 billion   Libraries $7.4 million
School Construction $33.9 million   Public Safety $21.3 million
Community College $30.5 million   Prince George’s Medical Center $39.3 million

 

Selected Legislation Affecting Prince George’s County

 

  • SB 1198 – Prince George’s County Regional Medical Center Act of 2017
    This bill alters the amount of operating grants the State is currently required to provide in fiscal 2018 through 2021, to ensure and assist in the transition of a new Prince George’s County Regional Medical Center to the University of Maryland Medical System. The Governor must include an annual appropriation of $10.0 million for additional operating grants in fiscal 2022 through 2028.  The bill restructures mandated capital appropriations that the Governor must include in the capital or operating budget bill for the construction of the Center in fiscal 2018 through 2020. 
  • HB 1576 – Prince George’s County – Student Loan Refinancing Authority
    This bill requires that Prince George’s County study whether a program of financial assistance consisting of affordable grants, loans, and other aid should be offered in the county to enable individuals, as determined by the county, to obtain a postsecondary education. 
  • HB 1649 – Creation of a State Debt – Prince George’s County – District Heights Veterans Park
    This bill sets aside $170,000 to be used as a grant to the Mayor and City Commissioners of the City of District Heights for the acquisition, planning, design, construction, repair, renovation, reconstruction, site improvement, and capital equipping of the District Heights Veterans Park. 

Protecting Our Values

 

As Chairman of the Economic Matters Committee in the General Assembly, I am pleased to highlight the following legislation passed by the committee:

 

  • HB 1 – Maryland Healthy Working Families Act
    This session, Maryland became the eighth state to pass a law that requires employers to allow their employees to earn sick leave under specified circumstances. Employers with 15 or more employees must allow employees to earn up to 40 hours (5 days) of paid leave in a year. Employers with 14 or fewer employees allow employees to earn up to 40 hours of unpaid leave. 
  • HB 185 – Distribution of Tobacco Products to Minors – Prohibition and Enforcement
    This bill authorizes county health officers, and specified designees of county health officers, to issue civil citations to persons who distribute tobacco products, tobacco paraphernalia, or coupons redeemable for tobacco products to minors. 
  • HB 212 – Consumer Protection – Credit Report Security Freezes – Prohibition on Fees and Required Notices
    This bill prohibits a consumer reporting agency from charging a fee for the placement of a security freeze if the consumer has not previously requested the placement of a security freeze from the consumer reporting agency. Under current law, a consumer reporting agency may charge up to $5 for each placement of a security freeze, temporary lift, or removal of a security freeze.   
  • HB 467 – Providing Our Workers Education and Readiness (POWER) – Apprenticeship Act
    This bill requires each contractor or subcontractor awarded a contract for at least $500,000 for a capital construction project that receives at least $1.0 million in the State’s capital budget to, under specified circumstances, (1) be affiliated with a registered apprenticeship program and use apprentices in each covered craft that is used; (2) make payments to the State Apprenticeship Training Fund; or (3) make specified payments directly to a registered apprenticeship program. 
  • HB 631 – Public Health – Essential Off-Patent or Generic Drugs – Price Gouging – Prohibition
    This bill prohibits a manufacturer or wholesale distributor from engaging in price gouging in the sale of an essential off-patent or generic drug. 
  • HB 1149 – Maryland Securities Act – Vulnerable Adults
    This bill imposes mandatory reporting requirements for certain individuals who suspect a vulnerable adult is the subject of financial exploitation. The bill expands the Maryland Securities Act to regulate federal exempt brokerdealers under specified circumstances and prohibits specified business practices. 
  • HB 1381 – Adult High School Pilot Program
    This bill establishes an adult high school pilot program to provide an alternative method for adults, who did not graduate from high school, to earn a high school diploma and potentially earn postsecondary education credits and industry-recognized certification in an environment that meets the needs of an adult learner. 

Protecting our Priorities

During the 2017 Session of the Maryland General Assembly, we acted upon a number of important legislative issues.  Below is an update on how some of those issues were resolved.

 

  • HB 425 – Public Schools – Suspensions and Expulsions
    This bill prohibits a child in public prekindergarten, kindergarten, first, or second grade from being expelled from school, unless required by federal law. The bill allows a student in those grades to be suspended for up to five school days if the school administration, in consultation with a school psychologist or other mental health professional, determines that there is an imminent threat of serious harm to other students or staff that cannot be reduced or eliminated through interventions and supports. 
  • HB 516 – Workgroup to Study the Implementation of Universal Access to Prekindergarten for Four Year Olds
    This bill establishes a workgroup to study the implementation of Universal Access to Prekindergarten for four-year olds. By September 1, 2017, the workgroup must report its findings and recommendations to the Commission on Innovation and Excellence in Education.  The General Assembly will review the findings during the 2018 Session. 
  • HB 978 – Education – Accountability – Consolidated State Plan and Support and Improvement Plans (Protect Our Schools)
    This bill requires that the State’s plan to improve student outcomes, which the Maryland State Department of Education must submit to the U.S. Department of Education under the federal Every Student Succeeds Act, or ESSA, complies with the requirements detailed in the bill. The bill specifies parameters for school quality indicators, comprehensive support and improvement plans, and targeted support and improvement plans, and prohibits specified interventions. 
  • HB 1083 – Health – Family Planning Services – Continuity of Care
    This bill establishes a Family Planning Program in the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene to ensure the continuity of family planning services in the State should federal funding to Planned Parenthood be terminated.
     
  • SB 571 – Maryland Health Insurance Coverage Protection Act
    This bill establishes the Maryland Health Insurance Coverage Protection Commission. Among its duties, the commission’s responsibility is to monitor potential and actual federal changes to the Affordable Care Act, Medicaid, the Maryland Children’s Health Program and Medicare.  Additional duties include assessing the impact of any changes and providing recommendations for State and local action to protect Marylanders’ access to affordable health care. 

 

 

 

Thank you for your support and continued interest!

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