Now that most viable bills have passed to the other house, they are already getting hearings, and some have already been voted directly out of committee. Bills that went to a vote without a hearing are those whose companion bill had been heard, and many of them had themselves already been approved. Among those that have been reported out include five healthcare bills, all of which have companion bills that passed the other chamber with identical language.
HB 705 - Declaration of Rights - Right to Reproductive Freedom
HB 812 - Health - Reproductive Health Services - Protected Information and Insurance Requirements
HB 477 - Public Senior Higher Education Institutions - Reproductive Health Services Plans - Requirements
HB 279 - Prescription Drug Affordability Board - Upper Payment Limits [companion to SB 202]
SB 202 - Prescription Drug Affordability Board - Upper Payment Limits [companion to HB 279]
In addition, a few other priority bills have come out of committee in their original chamber and are headed for a vote on the House or Senate floor. For example, SB 87 - Office of the Attorney General - Correctional Ombudsman – was given a favorable report with amendments by the Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee, making it possible for it to pass as well. However, since this bill would be crossing over after the “Opposite Chamber Crossover Date,” it would be referred to the other House Rules and Executive Nominations Committee, rather than going directly to the House Judiciary committee for consideration. We are still hopeful that it will pass before the session ends on April 10.
Coming Up this Week
The following priority bills will get their hearings in the opposite chamber this week. The procedures for bills that have crossed over are different. Those that have had a companion bill heard in the committee often do not have hearings, and if they do, only the bill sponsor is allowed to testify verbally unless there is opposition. We can still submit written testimony.
Tuesday, March 28 at 1:00 p.m.
Wednesday, March 29 at 1:00 p.m.
HB 416 – Resources and Education for All Prisons (REAP) Act – no companion bill in the Senate – in Judicial Proceedings
Thursday, March 30 at 1:00 p.m.
HB 109 – Task Force on Recycling Policy and Recycling and Waste Systems in Maryland – no companion bill in the Senate – in Education, Energy, and the Environment
Scheduling is very fluid now, so stay up to date by checking our Table of Upcoming Hearings for bill hearings and Current Status of Priority Bills for voting sessions. These tables are updated continually, although some events can happen with little or no advance notice.