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  • 2019 Maryland General Assembly Update Week Four

    February 04, 2019

    2019 Maryland General Assembly Update
    Week Four

    Work continued in the State Senate as the bill introduction deadline approaches. This week also featured Governor Larry Hogan’s fifth State of the State Address where he highlighted his legislative agenda as well as the progress the state is making when it comes to tax relief and the opioid crisis. Senator Carozza advocated for statewide economic growth and a longer summer in Committee, and cosponsored legislation to assist veterans.

    Senator Carozza attended the State of the State Address on Wednesday, January 30. The address was titled “A State of Opportunity.” Governor Hogan used the address to outline his 2019 legislative agenda, which included several initiatives that Senator Carozza will be supporting in the legislature. This includes legislation to create more accountability in our school systems, tax relief for job creators and first responders, and redistricting reform. “These tax cuts and incentives are welcome and doable and I look forward to working with my colleagues in the Senate to achieve these goals.”

    The Senate Education, Health, and Environmental Affairs Committee had a bill hearing on Senate Bill 128— County Boards of Education—School Year—Start and End Dates. If passed, this legislation would repeal Governor Hogan’s Executive Order that required schools to start after Labor Day. “I simply don’t understand why we are spending time trying to reverse starting school after Labor Day when we have so many pressing education priorities,” Sen. Mary Beth Carozza said during the hearing. “Starting school after Labor Day gives Maryland families more summer vacation days and still allows for local flexibility to determine a school calendar that meets the 180-day instructional requirement. There is no solid evidence that a post-Labor Day school start would have a negative impact on test scores, and a later start date can generate significant economic gains.”

    The Senate Education, Health, and Environmental Affairs Committee held a hearing on legislation that would expand the Maryland Veterans Service Animal Program to include trained therapy horses for interactions with veterans. Senate Bill 105—Maryland Veterans Service Animal Program—Therapy Horses— was introduced by Senator Bryan Simonaire of Anne Arundel County. After the bill testimony, several members of the Committee agreed to cosponsor the legislation, including Senator Carozza, who is a strong advocate for veterans.

    Shore visitors in Annapolis this week included Maryland’s Commitment to Veterans Eastern Shore coordinator Dina Karpf; Ocean Downs Casino Finance Director John Derby; Ocean Downs Director of Racing Peter Szymanski; Ocean City Mayor Rick Meehan; Ocean City Engineer Terry McGean; Ocean City Convention Center Executive Director Larry Noccolino; Lower Eastern Shore Heritage Area Council Executive Director Lisa Ludwig and members; Rackliffe House Executive Director Tina Lusko, President Ed Phillips and Board of Directors member Aaron Levinthal; Assateague State Park Manager Angela Baldwin, Lower Shore Clinic Director Dmitri Cavathas; Pocomoke City Mayor Bruce Morrison, and Berlin Mayor Gee Williams, III; and Bill Benson of Princess Anne.

    Senator Carozza was recognized for being 100% pro-small business at the Maryland Business for Responsive Government reception.

    (l to r) Delegate Wayne Hartman and Senator Mary Beth Carozza recognized the Rackliffe House for being recipients of the Preservation Maryland Project Excellence Award.


    The American Legion Post 166 Ocean City, MD held a special ceremony to honor The Immortal Four Chaplains who sacrificed their own lives by giving their life jackets to four others during the sinking of the troopship USAT Dorchrster during World War II. Glad to see student participation including future Eagle Scout Troop #261, American Legion JR. Auxiliary #166, and members of the Coast Guard Station - Ocean City!