April 29, 2019

2019 Senate Session Highlights – Senator Guy Guzzone

The 2019 General Assembly Session ended at midnight on April 9th, capping an eventful legislative session for Senator Guy Guzzone (District 13 – Howard County). In his first session as Senate Majority Leader, Guzzone was directly involved with some one hundred fifty-nine pieces of legislation and serve as the lead sponsor of twenty-three important bills (you can find a link to each of these bills by clicking here). Of the twenty-three bills that he carried as the lead sponsor seven passed both Chambers of the General Assembly and are now poised to become Maryland law.

Senate Bill 122 – Property Tax Credits – Real Property Used for Robotics Programs

This bill authorizes local governments to grant, by law, a property tax credit for real property that is used for the purposes of a public school robotics program or nonprofit robotics program in the State.

Senate Bill 158 – Maryland Department of Health – Community Dental Clinics Grant Program

This bill establishes the Community Dental Clinics Grant Program in the Maryland Department of Health (MDH). The Governor must include an appropriation in the State operating or capital budget for the program beginning in fiscal 2021 and each fiscal year thereafter.

Senate Bill 483 – Maryland Farms and Families Fund – Purpose, Use, Funding, and Grant Qualifications – Alterations

This bill expands the purpose and use of the Maryland Farms and Families Fund. In addition, beginning in fiscal 2021, the bill modifies the provision regarding the required funding for the fund. Instead of the existing language that makes $500,000 in annual funding subject to the limitations of the State budget, the bill requires the Governor to include an appropriation of $100,000 to the fund in the annual budget bill.

Senate Bill 533 – Sales and Use Tax – Short–Term Rentals

This bill collects and remits the State sales and use tax on specified short-term rental transactions facilitated by a short-term rental platform and requires short-term rental platforms to collect and remit the State sales and use tax.

Senate Bill 727 – Health – Professional and Volunteer Firefighter Innovative Cancer Screening Technologies Program

This bill establishes the Professional and Volunteer Firefighter Innovative Cancer Screening Technologies Program in the Maryland Department of Health (MDH). The Governor must include at least $100,000 in the annual budget for the program beginning in fiscal 2021. MDH must administer the program and may adopt regulations to implement the bill.

Senate Bill 728 – Sales and Use Tax – Collection by Marketplace Facilitators

This bill requires a marketplace facilitator and a marketplace seller to collect and remit the State sales and use tax under specified circumstances. The bill also establishes tax collection and licensing requirements for marketplace facilitators and marketplace sellers. In addition, the bill alters the distribution of sales and use tax revenues by requiring that for each fiscal year (1) the first $100.0 million in sales taxes collected from marketplace facilitators and certain out-of-state vendors be distributed to the general fund and (2) revenues in excess of $100.0 million be distributed to the Commission on Innovation and Excellence in Education Fund.

Senate Bill 729 – Technical Study on Changes in Forest Cover and Tree Canopy in Maryland

This bill requires the Harry R. Hughes Center for Agro-Ecology (Hughes Center), in consultation with the Department of Natural Resources (DNR), the Maryland Department of the Environment, the Maryland Department of Planning, the Maryland Department of Agriculture, and the Chesapeake Bay Program, as appropriate, to conduct a specified technical study to review changes in forest cover and tree canopy in the State. By December 1, 2019, the Hughes Center must report its findings from the technical study to the Governor and the General Assembly.

Now after a successful 2019 legislative session, Senator Guzzone looks ahead to the 2020 session when he’ll bring with him the experience of another productive and effective year in the Maryland Senate.

Guzzone

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