Governor Hogan Vetoes Maryland Sick Leave Mandate

Submitted by Shannon Gahs, Associate Director, MD Government Affairs (GAO)

As was widely expected, Governor Larry Hogan vetoed a controversial bill passed by the legislature during the session that ended on April 10, calling it bad for business. The bill would have mandated that all employers with more than 15 employees provide paid sick leave to most employees. Because the bill passed with a large majority of votes, we expect that the legislature will override the veto at the beginning of the 2018 session in January, with the law going into effect the following autumn. BAYADA supports paid sick leave for office and field employees, having a similar benefits plan already in place.

Maryland’s 2017 Legislative Session Now Closed

Submitted by Shannon Gahs, Associate Director, MD Government Affairs (GAO)

Wrapping up on April 10, the General Assembly considered 2,876 bills and resolutions over the 90-day session.  Of those, 940 bills and resolutions passed.   I am preparing a full session report but, of note, the bill containing our offices’ ability to accept orders from physicians in neighboring states passed and will become law as soon as Governor Larry Hogan signs it.  The budget passed nearly two weeks before it was due, including a 2% increase in Medicaid home health care reimbursement rate.  A bill mandating paid sick leave statewide passed but is expected to be vetoed.  Finally, three separate efforts to increase the minimum wage to $15 – statewide, in Baltimore City, and in Montgomery County – all failed.  Now the work to prepare for next session begins.

Maryland Legislative Session Opens

Submitted by Shannon Gahs, Associate Director, MD Government Affairs (GAO)

An intense 90-day legislative session opened January 11 with Governor Larry Hogan pledging to operate in a spirit of bipartisan cooperation, as did Senate President Mike Miller.  Speaker of the House Michael Busch did not, promising instead to press forward with a Democratic agenda.  Mandatory paid sick leave and addressing a huge budget shortfall are expected to be the biggest topics of 2017.