With a wave of bills expected to be introduced in both chambers, legislators agree that business issues will take shape in the next two weeks or so.
The legislative staff agency has reportedly been inundated with bill drafting requests – indicating that a high volume of new proposals may appear in the days ahead. The Senate bill filing deadline was early this week, the House has its deadline next week.
Tax issues and business-related spending alike will be on display in the next dozen days, lawmakers said Monday morning at the Greater Baltimore Committee’s annual legislative forum. The forum came as the Hogan administration moved to introduce supplemental budgets to fund priorities like a $700 million Baltimore blight-elimination effort and a Prince George’ County hospital. It also came as early deadlines loom for legislators to introduce bills in the General Assembly.
“The next two weeks are really going to be telling — what’s coming and what spending and tax reductions you’re going to see,” said Senate Minority Leader J.B. Jennings, a Republican from Baltimore and Harford counties. “I think you’re going to see several hundred bills introduced.”
Chief among questions to be answered is what tax changes are in store. Hogan has already backed a number of tax and fee cuts. Tax cuts are likely to spur debate, especially after a commission led by retired Lockheed Martin CEO Norman Augustine that was backed by legislative Democratic leaders came out in January with several recommendations.