Howard Faces $64 Million Budget Shortfall

Howard County Executive Calvin Ball today released the Spending Affordability Advisory Committee’s (SAAC) Report for fiscal 2022. According to the report, spending requests outpace resources amid slower economic growth, with a projected fiscal gap of $64 million between expenditure requests and projected revenues in fiscal 2022. “We’re facing a challenging economic outlook amid the ongoing pandemic, with a $64 million operating budget shortfall and growing debt service payments that constrain our ability to absorb new…

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Maryland Board of Public Works – March 10, 2021 Agenda

Maryland’s Board of Public Works (BPW) reviews projects, contracts, and expenditure plans for state agencies – many of which have an effect on county governments. The BPW is composed of Governor Larry Hogan, Treasurer Nancy Kopp, and Comptroller Peter Franchot. It meets on alternating Wednesdays and the meetings are open to the public. The meeting will be held in Governor’s Reception Room on the 2nd floor of the State House in Annapolis. Note: In light of the COVID-19 epidemic,…

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MACo: Costly Tax Incentive Lacks Local Input

MACo Legislative Director Kevin Kinnally today submitted testimony to the House Ways and Means Committee in opposition to HB 1052 Income- Tax - Subtraction Modification - Trade of Business Enterprise Expenses Resulting in Federal Loan Forgiveness. MACo opposes state-mandated reductions in local revenue sources, but welcomes tools to grant counties options and flexibility to pursue their own parallel tax incentives, or to develop others to suit their local needs. From the MACo Testimony: The swift…

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Counties Urge Caution Over Proposal to Alter RISE Zone Program

MACo Legislative Director Kevin Kinnally today submitted testimony to the Senate Budget and Taxation Committee to support SB 778 Regional Institution Strategic Enterprise Zone Program - Alterations with amendments. While this bill generally expands the purpose of the Regional Institution Strategic Enterprise (RISE) Zone program, it also repeals the program by 2028. County governments believe the tax incentives offered by this program are extremely effective and urge the Committee to keep them intact. From the…

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Counties Support Small Business Relief, Request Local Input on Broad Tax Break

MACo Legislative Director Kevin Kinnally yesterday submitted testimony to the Senate Budget and Taxation Committee in support of SB 722 Small Business COVID-19 Relief Act of 2021 with amendments. Counties support SB 772's strong commitment to delivering meaningful relief to small businesses hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic but are concerned about the bill's carryover fiscal effects, which would undermine county revenues and support for schools, public health, public safety, and other essential community services –…

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MACo: Enhance Equity in Property Tax Assessments

MACo Legislative Director Kevin Kinnally yesterday testified in support of SB 782 - State Department of Assessments and Taxation - Real Property Assessments and Appeals, before the Senate Budget and Taxation Committee. This bill generally aims to provide more transparent, accurate, and timely property tax assessments, which will enhance equity and fairness for all taxpayers MACo agrees with the bill's sponsor, Senator Antonio Hayes, that the fiscal note does not represent the intent of the…

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Bill Sets Unreasonable Requirements on Local Finance Offices

MACo Legislative Director Kevin Kinnally yesterday testified in opposition to HB 1050 - Tax Sales - Notices before the House Ways and Means Committee. This bill requires county governments to identify and notify any person with a lien on or interest in a property prior to tax sale. Because counties do not possess the necessary tools to identify all parties with an interest in a property, they would need to hire an outside company to…

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MACo Stands Against Squeeze on Local Revenues

MACo Legislative Director Kevin Kinnally today testified in opposition of HB 1079 - Admissions and Amusement Tax -Exemptions - Activities That Promote Health and Physical Well-Being. This bill prohibits local governments from imposing the admissions amusement tax on the gross receipts of businesses offering activities that "promote health and physical well-being," including tennis centers, fitness centers, gymnasiums, and sports facilities. From the MACo Testimony: MACo is concerned with the carryover county fiscal effects of this…

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MACo Supports Flexible Business Tax Incentives

MACo Legislative Director Kevin Kinnally today testified in support of HB 1137 - Property Tax Credit - Business Entities - State of Emergency before the House Ways and Means Committee. This bill authorizes local governments to grant optional property tax credits to businesses affected by a state of emergency. The swift and unprecedented shock of the COVID-19 public health crisis has wreaked havoc on the economy. As the focus shifts to restoring our state and…

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MACo: Don’t Let Enterprise Zones “Die On The Vine”

On Febraury 18th, 2021 MACo Executive Director Michael Sanderson testified before the House Ways and Means Committee in opposition to HB 805 Economic Development - Enterprise Zone Program - Alterations. This bill creates alterations to the Enterprise Zone Program, which restrict its implementation and hinder its effectiveness. Mr. Sanderson cited the funding caps and moratorium on new site designations as "going to far," but indicated that the additional effectiveness and performance measures are all reasonable.…

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