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Governor Larry Hogan Signs 350 Bills Into Law

Bills Include Tax Relief, Public Safety and Charter School Improvement

ANNAPOLIS, MD – Governor Larry Hogan was today joined by Senate President Mike Miller and Speaker of the House Michael Busch in his third bill signing ceremony. During a two part session, the governor signed 350 bills into law.

“I am proud to sign bills that demonstrate our administration’s commitment to Maryland businesses, including repealing the most detested of taxes in Maryland – the rain tax,” said Governor Hogan. “Additionally, we are taking action to address public safety issues in Baltimore City and around the state, including legislation that will work to ensure that every child in Maryland has access to a quality education.”

Among the bills signed today include:

SB 863, Rain Tax (also known as the Watershed Protection and Restoration Programs, Revision), which repeals the requirement that forces local jurisdictions to collect a stormwater remediation fee, and instead authorizes such jurisdictions to do so.

SB 595, Public Charter School Improvement Act of 2015, which would alter state law regarding the establishment and operation of public charter schools, and existing requirements for public charter schools. The bill provides greater flexibility in operations to eligible public charter schools that have existed for at least five years and meet certain conditions. The role of the Maryland State Board of Education as a chartering authority is eliminated and its authority in appeals is clarified.

SB 592: Income Tax – Subtraction Modification – Military Retirement Income – Individuals at Least 65 Years Old, which expands the existing military retirement income tax subtraction modification by increasing the maximum amount of retirement income that can be excluded from Maryland adjusted gross income for purposes of calculating Maryland income tax liability from $5,000 to $10,000.

HB 943: Economic Competitiveness and Commerce — Restructuring, which would rename the Department of Business and Economic Development to the Department of Economic Competitiveness and Commerce and establish an Office of the Secretary of Commerce in the Office of the Governor.

SB 482 / HB 533: The Public Safety – Law Enforcement Officers – Body-Worn Digital Recording Device and Electronic Control Device, emergency bills that would make it lawful for a law enforcement officer to intercept an oral communication with a “body-worn digital recording device” or an “electronic control device.” These bills would also establish the Commission Regarding the Implementation and Use of Body Cameras by Law Enforcement Officers to study and make recommendations to the Police Training Commission and the General Assembly.

HB 954: Public Safety – Deaths Involving a Law Enforcement Officer – Reports, which would require law enforcement agencies to provide the Governor’s Office of Crime Control and Prevention with information about deaths of individuals in police custody, as well as deaths of officers occurring in the line of duty.

SB 133, Environment – Bay Restoration – Use of Funds, which adds to the authorized uses of the Bay Restoration Fund (BRF), beginning in FY 2016, funding for up to 87.5% of the cost of projects, as approved by the Maryland Department of the Environment.

A copy of the bills signed in the first and second bill signing ceremony today is attached.

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