66 new bills signed into law Tuesday, as MD General Assembly session wrapped up

MARYLAND- 66 bills going into law, that’s how many pieces of legislation Governor Larry Hogan signed Tuesday, after the Maryland General Assembly wrapped up its session.

“I think we are all sending a strong and clear message that we can, while we may have disagreements on certain issues we can work together,” Governor Hogan said.

I’m told this session was challenging, especially because of the pandemic.

But many bills were passed that would expand mental health services, broadband services, and telehealth services.

“Telehealth that was in particular a bill that we know we needed to see as passage through because we know with the pandemic it has heightened our awareness that you know people still need to see their doctors,” Del. Sheree Sample-Hughes, said.

Senator Addie Edkardt said another accomplishment during this session enacting a budget.

She said at the beginning of session they thought the budget would be tough, but were proved wrong.

“We wound up coming out with many more billions of dollars than we ever expected, which will be really helpful,” Sen. Addie Eckardt, said.

Another, talker this session was police reform bills.

Delegate Hartman said he thinks some of the reform bills passed will negatively impact officers, including changes for no knock warrants.

“For the most part they are going to put a time where 8 am to 7 pm for a warrant can served, so what does that tell the criminals okay, let’s get the scales out, let’s baggie this stuff up because nobody’s coming,” Del. Wayne Hartman, said.

And while session may be over, I’m told they are proud of the work accomplished, and the work doesn’t stop here.

“Everybody has worked extremely hard no matter what side of the aisle you’re on,” Del. Sample-Hughes, said.

“We still have a lot of work to do, you know messaging back to the Governor as things are unfolding in the district,” Del. Hartman, said

Delegate Hartman told us that there were bills that dealt with crime prevention and protecting law enforcement that didn’t pass, but he wished they did.

He added that he’s happy one of his bills passed that bans the release of helium balloons locally.

Sen. Addie Edkardt said she was happy to see a bill on sports betting get passed, as it will help local businesses.

Del. Hartman said another bill passed was the Maryland Green New Deal which requires the planting of 5 million trees.

He said with this law he’s concerned about the amount of money that it will be taking from the Bay Restoration Fund that historically is used to help municipalities and sewage treatment facilities.

In addition, Del. Hartman says there was a law passed that would require Maryland’s fleet vehicles to be zero emission by 2035, which will be a financial expense he said.

 

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