Counties Support Added Flexibility on Local Revenues

On February 2, 2023, MACo Legislative Director Kevin Kinnally testified before the House Ways and Means Committee in support of HB 0142 - More Local Tax Relief for Working Families Act of 2023. This bill gives counties the proper tools and flexibility to levy the local income tax with greater equity and fairness. In 2021, the General Assembly approved legislation authorizing counties to levy the local income tax on a bracket basis – standard practice for…

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DLS: New Tax Data Reveals Disparity Grant Program Underfunded by $54M

New income tax data reveals the Disparity Grant Program is underfunded by $54 million. The Disparity Grant Program provides noncategorical State aid to low-wealth jurisdictions. It promotes equity across jurisdictions to overcome disparate tax bases -- ensuring that counties, which rely on local income taxes for substantial revenue, can generate sufficient yield to fund schools, public health, public safety, roadway maintenance, and other essential community services. Recent years have seen State-imposed "caps" in this program…

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Bookmark This Cheat Sheet for Submitting 2023 General Assembly Testimony

The House and the Senate are using a hybrid system this session accepting virtual and in-person oral testimony, but both houses have stressed that witnesses are strongly encouraged to be in-person as not all virtual witnesses will be called for testimony. This post serves as an easy index for everything you need to submit testimony in 2023. The information covered in this post is subject to change at any time. We’ll update it to the…

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Learn Annapolis “Lingo” with an Insider Cheat Sheet

The General Assembly and its many storied histories have formed a special "language" around town... where members and stakeholders chat about bluebacks and snakes and sunsets. Fortunately there's a handy guide to help translate Annapolis lingo, to help make sense of it all. The Department of Legislative Services, the non-partisan staffing agency to the General Assembly (and apropos of this write-up, known as D-L-S to everyone around town) has prepared a 7-page write-up of commonly…

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4 Ways to Keep Up with General Assembly News

Want to have the latest news from Annapolis? Here are 4 ways to keep up with 2023 Maryland General Assembly news: 1. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook. 2. Sign up for our weekly e-newsletter. Read This Week on Conduit Street, an e-newsletter issued every Friday. During the session, issues include a working agenda for the upcoming Legislative Committee meeting, state hearing schedule, timely legislative updates, and Maryland Association of Counties’ testimony of proposed legislation. Issues published during…

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Watching the 90-Day Session – Deadlines and Timetables

The year's General Assembly session will last for 90 days, after it started at noon on Wednesday January 11... and is scheduled to run through midnight on Monday, April 10. Let's look at some of the important milestone dates between now and then. The full calendar is available online here. Major dates of interest: January 20 (10th Day) — SENATE AND HOUSE BILL REQUEST GUARANTEE DATE Legislators seeking to introduce bills are asked to place…

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General Assembly to Allow In-Person AND Virtual Testimony for 2023 Session

Each standing committee in the Maryland House of Delegates and Maryland Senate will implement a hybrid system for public testimony to allow for in-person and virtual testimony for the 2023 legislative session. According to a joint statement from House Speaker Adrienne Jones and Senate President Bill Ferguson, the new hybrid system aims to eliminate barriers to public participation in the legislative process and furthers the General Assembly's commitment to limiting the spread of COVID-19, RSV,…

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Top Issues of 2023 Session: Budget and Fiscal Outlook

With the 2023 legislative session rapidly approaching, MACo is profiling some significant issues that stand to gather attention in the General Assembly's work. Here, we preview Maryland's budget and fiscal outlook. The Constitution of Maryland requires a balanced budget: total estimated revenues must equal or exceed total appropriations. The budget also must reflect any estimated revenue surplus or deficit at the end of the preceding year. Previously, the Maryland Constitution prohibited the General Assembly from…

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