Annapolis Insights: Legislative Newsletter – Week 11

Greetings constituents,

Happy Maryland Day to all my fellow Marylanders! Today, we celebrate the founding of our great state and all the people and traditions that make it unique. As your Maryland State Delegate representing District 8, I am proud to represent you and work toward a brighter future for our communities. So let’s continue to come together and make Maryland an even better place to call home.

As we near the end of the 2023 legislative session, we remain committed to working tirelessly until the final adjournment. Cross-over week has passed, and we are now taking action on Senate bills while the Senate is taking action on House bills. I have several bills on the Senate side of the legislature waiting to be voted on. I am actively collaborating with the members and chairs of the HGO committee, on which I serve, and others to advance important legislation.

69th Day — Opposite Chamber Bill Crossover Update

I am excited to share that my four bills – HB 274, HB 633, HB 967, and HB 1151 – have successfully crossed the Senate. Additionally, the appropriation committee amended my bill HB0300 and incorporated it into HB 458. One of my companion bills, HB 264, has also been converted into a summer study bill under SB0400 in the Senate. 

Moreover, I have supported and cosponsored multiple bills that have crossed over to the Senate, and they will positively impact our state. First, I voted for HB 843, a cosponsor, establishing the Baltimore Regional Water Governance Task Force. This task force will study approaches to water and wastewater governance in the Baltimore region and provide recommendations to the Mayor of Baltimore City, the County Executive of Baltimore County, the Governor, and the General Assembly on or before January 30, 2024.

Additionally, I supported several bills focused on economic development and education. House Bill 552 establishes the Build Our Future Grant Pilot Program, which will support technology projects, develop innovation infrastructure, and bring jobs to communities across the state. House Bill 546 creates a service year option for high school graduates to work for community organizations and nonprofit groups, promoting a lifelong service culture in our young people and communities.

I also supported House Bill 23, which protects residents of mobile home parks by ensuring that a potential buyer commits to the housing security of the residents and allows the residents to match an offer to buy their community. Finally, House Bill 279 removes the sunset. It allows the Prescription Drug Affordability Board to continue its work on upper payment limits, helping to lower the cost of prescription drugs in Maryland. I  also supported House Bill 58, which enhances public access and transparency rules for the Maryland State Ethics Commission by requiring public parts of the Commission’s meeting to be web-streamed live for public access.

 HB 264 SB 400: Movie Captioning Bill Preserved for Summer Study

As mentioned before, although HB 264 SB 400 will not pass during this session in Annapolis, I’m pleased to share that Senator Brooks and I were able to keep the bill alive. The bill will not be voted on this year but included in a summer study. This means that during the interim, the Senate and I will meet with stakeholders from both sides of the issue to evaluate the pros and potential cons of SB 400. While there is no guarantee, I’m optimistic we can pass this bill next year. We are grateful to all advocates, including Jacob Leffler!

Exploring Maryland’s Aviation and Aerospace History at the Martin Maryland Aviation Museum

This week, I enjoyed  Martin Maryland Aviation Museum’s (GLMMAM) dedicated staff and many individuals from the aviation industry during Aviation Day in Annapolis. We were privileged to learn much about Maryland’s rich aviation and aerospace history, which the museum has been preserving since 1990. The Glenn L. Martin Company (later Martin Marietta) made much of this history in Middle River, Maryland, the part of my new district. Visitors to the museum can explore and discover this history through the more than a dozen aircraft on display, including three built by the Glenn L. Martin Company in Middle River.

In addition, the museum’s archives, which contain plans, documents, research models, aircraft tools, components, and an indexed collection of more than 200,000 aviation and company photographs, make it an important resource for researchers. Moreover, the museum offers educational programs for all ages, from a free monthly speaker series to special tours for schools and other groups. I highly recommend visiting the Martin Maryland Aviation Museum to experience this unique and essential part of Maryland’s history in Baltimore County. 

I also had the pleasure of meeting Gustavus A. McLeoda, pilot and author featured on reality television for his aviation exploits. Notably, he was the first person to fly over the North Pole in an open-cockpit biplane.

 Health and Government Operations Committee Reports Most Bills to Senate This Year

I am pleased to share that the Health and Government Operations Committee has been hard at work this year, reporting and crossing over the most bills to the Senate. As a member of the committee, I am proud of the progress we have made thus far. This week, we heard Senate bills and have already voted on a few, which have moved to the House floor for the second reader. It is an honor to serve as a floor leader on multiple bills, and I am humbled by the opportunity to do so. As we progress, I will continue serving as a floor leader for Senate Bills.

Clean Harbors to Treat Stormwater from East Palestine Trail Derailment

          Yesterday, Baltimore City contacted Baltimore County to inform them that the EPA and MDE directed Clean Harbors, a certified and permitted facility in the city, to treat stormwater from the East Palestine trail derailment in Ohio. Clean Harbors’ treatment process removes chemicals and compounds and meets strict treatment levels before discharging into the city’s sanitary sewer system. While the discharge points are far from the region’s drinking water, treatment levels must meet Federal Clean Drinking Water standards before discharge. The county executive and city mayor have been in touch with the EPA and Governor Moore’s team, and they assured them that the process is safe with no public health or environmental risks. The arrival of wastewater is expected next Thursday, and the EPA will be onsite. The county will keep everyone informed and seek answers to any questions.

Parkville Basketball Team Honored for 2023 4A Championship Win

We were thrilled to have welcomed and congratulated the Parkville High School Knights Boys Basketball team and their coaching staff on Wednesday for their incredible victory at the 2023 4A Boys Basketball Championship! Alongside Senator Klausmeier, Delegate Jackson, and Delegate Allen, I presented them with a House and Senate Resolution to recognize their outstanding achievement. It’s always inspiring to see young athletes display such dedication, teamwork, and sportsmanship on the court. Congratulations again to the Knights on this well-deserved win!

Bridging Differences for the Betterment of the Community

I am happy to share that I recently had the opportunity to meet with Chris Fallon,  my constituent and educator from Parkville, and Patti Fallon, who is the Chairwoman of the Baltimore County Republican Central Committee.

During the meeting, my office had a productive discussion about our priorities and perspectives on important issues. It was truly humbling to witness our work together, despite our philosophical differences, and it was a great reminder that we could all come together to serve our community. I remain committed to working for everyone and positively impacting our community.

How to follow Maryland General Assembly’s 2023 session

To follow the Maryland General Assembly’s 2023 session, you can visit the Maryland General Assembly’s website. The website provides the following resources:

  1. The Schedule for the 2023 Session
  2. The Committee Schedule (which will be updated regularly to reflect any changes)
  3. The Legislation Charts allow you to look up and track proposed bills.

It’s important to note that every bill introduced before the deadline will be granted a hearing. In addition, before the hearing takes place, a fiscal and policy note will be published regarding the bill. By utilizing these resources, you can stay up-to-date with the Maryland General Assembly’s 2023 session and track the progress of proposed bills.

Stay Aware, Stay Safe

As the new year begins and everything appears to be back to normal, it is important to remember that we are not out of the woods yet. 

With the emergence of the new Omicron variant XBB.1.5, it’s crucial to continue taking precautions to protect ourselves and our loved ones. However, we have tools to prevent severe infection and maintain a sense of normalcy. So please, make sure to get vaccinated and stay safe.

Opportunity for Excellence: Apply Now for Delegate Scholarship Program 

My office now accepts applications for the District 8 Delegate Scholarship in collaboration with Delegate Nick Allen and Delegate Carl Jackson. This scholarship aims to assist as many local students as possible, as we have done in previous years. Therefore, we encourage interested students to submit their applications early. To apply, please visit the following link:

Your Voice Matters 

Thank everyone for reaching out with their thoughts on legislation, and all of your advocacy is heard and greatly appreciated. Whether at the federal, state, or local level, our government operates at a higher level with an informed and active constituency. Please do not hesitate to reach out with questions, comments, concerns, or requests for help. My staff and I are here to help, and I can be reached via email or by phone at 410-841-3524.



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