Monday, December 13, 2021

 Legislatures Overrides Hogan Vetoes and Approves New Congressional Districts


On December 6, the Maryland General Assembly met for a Special Session There were three orders of business.  First, the legislature overrode most of the Governor's vetoes from the 2021 legislative session. Second, they appointed Dereck Davis as the new Treasurer to replace Nancy Kopp who retired.  Third, they passed a redistricting plan for the Congressional district lines.  The Legislative Redistricting will be done in the 2021 regular session. The 2022 Legislative Session starts Wednesday January 12th 


Overriding of Governor Vetoes:   Here are some of the important bills that were overridden by the General Assembly.


Dignity Not Detention Act – Bill would require counties that have agreements with ICE to jail detainees to end their contracts by Oct 2022.

Maryland Driver Protection Act – Ensures that ICE doesn’t have direct access to Maryland Databases.

Criminal Justice

Remove the Governor from the Parole Process and Enable people serving life sentence to be eligible for parole after 15 years


State Employees – Collective Bargaining – Applicability, Bargaining Processes, and Memorandums of Understanding – Allows all the parts of the University of Maryland system to negotiate in one combined body.

Education – Community Colleges – Collective Bargaining - This bill would allow workers at community colleges to form unions and negotiate contracts

Public Utilities – Investor-Owned Utilities – Prevailing Wage – Bill would require higher wages for employees working on underground projects

Economic Development – Job Creation Tax Credit – Qualified Position and Revitalization Area – Would increase wages for workers at companies receiving job creation tax credits


Transportation – Maryland Transit Administration Funding and MARC Rail Extension Study (Transit Safety and Investment Act) – 
This bill would establish minimum funding levels for mass transit in the sate’s construction budget and give $2 million worth of grants to small businesses hurt by Purple Line Construction.


Local Tax Relief for Working Families – Allows local governments to have more flexible income tax rates


Board of Public Works Transparence Act – Increases transparency in the Board of Public Works Budget cutting process

Not Overridden – Has to Be Re-introduced in 2022 

SB 420 – Decriminalizes Certain Drug Paraphernalia


New Treasurer:   After almost 20 years as State Treasurer, Nancy Kopp stepped down as State Treasurer.  The General Assembly elected Derek Davis from Prince George’s County as the new Treasurer. CT Wilson from Charles County will replace him as Chair of the House Economic Matters Committee.


The General Assembly passed a new Redistricting plan for Congressional Districts.   The plan was vetoed by the Governor and then overridden by the General Assembly.  The new plan will face legal challenges before it is finalized.

The big change in the new map is that Congressional District 1 which covers the Eastern Shore will now be extended to some of Anne Arundel County.  This will make the CD #1 more competitive between Republicans and Democrats.  (In the old map CD #1 went to Trump by 20% and in the new map Biden won the district by .3%).   Currently there are 7 Districts that favor Democrats and 1 District that favors Republicans. In the new plan 7 Districts will favor Democrats and one District that will be competitive between Democrats and Republicans.