Mar 24, 2015

3/24/2015 – JOTF Policy Update

Act Now for #MDSecondChances

Gov. Larry Hogan says he will sign Maryland Second Chance Act After four years in front of the General Assembly, the Maryland Second Chance Act has strong bipartisan support and a seal of approval from the governor. The Senate has unanimously passed SB 526 and Gov. Larry Hogan threw his support behind the bill last week. The measure, which must pass through the House of Delegates, will shield certain nonviolent misdemeanor convictions from the public record. The bill has received a significant amount of press coverage, including this favorable editorial from The Frederick News-Post.

Please take a moment and call members of the Judicial Proceedings and Judiciary Committees and ask them to support the Maryland Second Chance Act of 2015. 

JOTF Legislative Priorities





Healthy Working Families Act

SB 40
HB 385

Everyone gets sick and everyone deserves time to recover without risking their economic stability, yet 41 percent of American workers are unable to earn paid sick days.In Maryland, more than 700,000 of our neighbors are forced to make impossible choices: Go to work sick, send an ill child to school or daycare, or stay home and sacrifice much-needed income or, worse, risk job loss. The Working Matters Coalition, of which JOTF is a founding member, supports legislation that would enable workers to earn a limited number of annual paid sick and safe days from their employer. SB 40 is awaiting a
vote in the Senate
Finance Committee.HB 385 is awaiting a vote in the House Economic Matters Committee.
Fact Sheet Working
CoalitionFor more
information or
to provide
support, contact
Melissa Broome.
Maryland Second
Chance Act of 2015HB 244
SB 526
Jobs are the key to our economic recovery, and the ability to secure a job is crucial to the successful reentry of those returning to society from prison. Research shows that recidivism risks are highest in the first 3-5 years following incarceration. Given that recidivism declines steadily over time, the proposed legislation would make certain nonviolent misdemeanor convictions eligible for shielding with the filing a petition after a waiting period. Law enforcement will continue to have access to the shielded records. HB 244 is awaiting
a vote in the House
Judiciary Committee. SB 526 was passed the full Senate unanimously and will be heard at 1 p.m. on April 1 in the House Judiciary
Fact SheetFor more
information or
to provide support, contact
Caryn Aslan
Criminal Records Expungement –
Non-ConvictionsHB 304
SB 652
Employers often refuse to hire applicants with criminal records, even if the person was never convicted.
Maryland law prohibits the expungement of non-convictions if a person is subsequently convicted of any crime, no matter how minor. JOTF believes that Marylanders should not be penalized for offenses for which they were never convicted. JOTF supports legislation that would repeal the subsequent conviction rule.
HB 304 passed the full House by a vote
of 95-45.
It now awaits a hearing in the Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee. SB 652
passed the full Senate by a vote of
41 -1. It will be heard at 1 p.m. on March 31 in the House Judiciary Committee.
Fact SheetFor more information or
to provide support, contact
Caryn Aslan.
Procedure — 
Expungement of Court and Police
Records — 
Acquittal or Dismissal HB 904
Maryland’s existing laws require a formal petition process and fee to expunge eligible criminal records.
This process is cumbersome and presents significant barriers for job seekers.This bill would authorize the automatic expungement of court and police records related to charges that result in a dismissal or acquittal.
As amended,
HB 904 passed the House of Delegates
unanimously and will be heard at 1 p.m. on March 26 in the
Senate Judicial
Proceedings Committee.
“Expungement should be
automatic” video
Motor Vehicle
Insurance –
in Underwriting and Rating – Prohibitions SB 749
Mobility is a important for working families, yet the insurance industry practices of setting rates based on factors unrelated to driving performance mean certain Marylanders pay more for insurance than others.SB 749 would prevent auto insurers from using factors including credit history, education, martial status and occupation to set insurance rates. SB 749 is awaiting a
vote in the Senate
Finance Committee.

*During the 2015 state legislative session, JOTF will also closely monitor the budget process and be prepared to act should harmful cuts arise in the areas of post-secondary access, adult education, and workforce development.

JOTF Legislative Watch List

Bills featured in the watch list are tracked by our policy experts, but their appearance here does not necessarily indicate JOTF support.





Maryland Secure Choice Retirement
Savings Program
and TrustHB 421
SB 312
This legislation would create a statewide system to provide retirement savings opportunities to low and middle-income workers. It will prevent hardworking people from falling into poverty later in life. Del. Frick
HB 421 is awaiting a vote in the House Economic Matters Committee. SB 312 is awaiting a vote in the Senate
Budget and Taxation
Limits on Use of Leave for Birth,
Adoption, Foster 
Placement or Care
of Child HB 564
This bill would enable state employees and their spouses who also work for the state to each take 12 weeks of leave, under the Family Medical Leave Act, for the birth or adoption of a child or to care for a family member with a serious health condition. It would also allow
state employees and their state employed spouses to each use up to 30 paid sick days. Current law combines and limits the amount of leave couples can take when they both work for the state. FMLA is currently limited to 12 weeks per couple and sick days are capped at 40 days.
Del. Kelly HB 564 passed
the full House
It will be heard
at 1 p.m. on
Apil 2 in the
Senate Finance Committee.
Criminal Procedure- 
Expungement –
Conviction of a
Crime that is No Longer a CrimeSB 651
HB 124
This legislation would allow a person to petition for expungement of criminal records for crimes that are no longer considered illegal. Sen. Muse
Del. Anderson
SB 651 passed the
full Senate with a vote of 41-6. It
will be heard
at 1 p.m. on March 31 in the House
Committee.HB 124 passed the
full House with a vote of 93-46. It
now moves to the Senate.
Fair Scheduling 
ActSB 688
HB 969
This legislation will help ensure workers receive adequate time to plan for their work and family lives by requiring employers to provide workers with at least three weeks advance written notice of their schedule. It also guarantees  employees will only be required to work the hours on their schedule and mandates that schedule changes must be made 24 hours in advance with written notice and employee
Sen. Benson
Del. Hixson
SB 688 is
awaiting a vote
in the Senate Finance Committee.HB 969 is awaiting a vote in the House
Economic Matters Committee.
Overwork Prohibition Act

HB 1027

This legislation protects Maryland workers from employer retaliation, including termination or discipline, for declining to work more than 55
hours a week or to work outside of their regularly scheduled shift. The bill also provides for daily overtime (time and a half pay) for more than eight hours of work in a day.
Del. Glenn HB 1027 has
Low-Income Student Outreach and College 
Access Act of
2015SB 816
HB 779
The bill would establish the Low-Income Student Outreach and College Access Pilot Program, which would encourage low-income high school graduates to attend, and graduate from, college. Sen. Rosapepe
Del. Washington
SB 816 was
amended and is awaiting a vote from the full Senate.HB 779 was
amended passed the full house with
a vote of 131 -5. It now moves to the Senate.
College Tuition Exemption for
Full-Time StudentsHB 673 
This legislation seeks to reduce barriers to higher education by exempting Maryland high school graduates from paying tuition at the state’s community colleges. Del. Haynes HB 673 is awaiting a vote in the
House Ways
and Means Committee.
Baltimore City
Community College –
Tuition Waivers: 
Graduates of
Baltimore City
Public High Schools
SB 131
SB 131 would exempt eligible Baltimore City public high school graduates from tuition payments at Baltimore City Community College. Sen. Gladden SB 131 is  awaiting a vote in the Senate Budget and Taxation
System of
Pay It Forward
Pilot Program
and Tuition
Freeze –
StudiesHB 57
SB 237
This legislation would require the University System of Maryland Board of Regents study the creation of Pay It Forward tuition programs which create payment plans based on a percentage of a graduate’s salary after graduation.JOTF believes this model may ultimately make college less affordable for low-income populations who currently rely on financial aid. Del. Reznik
HB 57 has
beenwithdrawn.SB 237 is
awaiting a
vote in the
Senate Budget
and Taxation
Services –
No Wrong
Door Pilot ProgramHB 66
This legislation will establish a program to ensure low-income Marylanders have access to services to sustain themselves and their families.It aims to close gaps in services, increase access to state resources, provide more access for under-served populations and foster better coordination between public
and private service providers.
HB 66 is awaiting a
vote in the House
Appropriations Committee
Maryland Wage
& Hour Law –
State Minimum
Wage – IncreaseHB 4
The legislation would increase the state minimum wage to $10.10 hour beginning July 1, 2015. Del. Glenn HB 4 received
an unfavorable
report (18 – 2)from the House  Economic Matters
State Minimum
Wage Rate –
Exceptions –
Social Service
Nonprofit OrganizationsSB 3
This bill would authorize nonprofit organizations that provide social services and have a budget less than $250,000 to pay 85 percent of the state minimum wage. Sen. Getty SB 3 is awaiting a
hearing in the Senate Finance
Criminal Procedure – Shielding –
Misdemeanor ConvictionsSB 130 
This legislation would allow Marylanders to request that certain court and police records
for certain misdemeanor convictions be shielded from the public record.
Sen. Gladden SB 130 received anunfavorable
report (9-1)
from the Senate
Judicial Proceedings
Criminal Procedure – Expungement – Misdemeanor
& Felony ConvictionsSB 16
The proposed legislation would expand the crimes eligible for expungement to include certain misdemeanors and nonviolent felonies. Applicable crimes could be expunged after seven and 12 years, respectively. Sen. Conway SB 16 received an unfavorable report (9 -2)
from the Senate
Equal Pay for Equal Work

SB 424
HB 1051

This bill would prohibit employers from providing “less-favorable” working opportunities based on a worker’s sex or gender identity. The measure also would prevent an employer from taking action against a worker for disclosure or discussion of wages. Sen. Lee
Del. Valderrama
SB 424 is awaiting a vote in the
Senate Finance
Committee.HB 1051 is
awaiting a vote
in the House
Matters Committee.
Fiscal Notes – 
Criminal Justice
Policy Impact 
StatementsSB 478
HB 678
The bill would require future legislation
to include a criminal justice policy impact statement if it creates a criminal offense, significantly alters the elements of an existing offense, alters existing  penalties or changes sentencing, parole or probation procedures.
Sen. Ramirez
SB 478 is awaiting a vote in the Senate Rules CommitteeHB 678 is awaiting a vote in the
House Rules and Executive
Prevailing Wage –
Payment for Apprenticeship Programs HB 370
SB 777
This legislation would require contractors
and subcontractors with public work contracts to pay the full cost of apprenticeship programs for each apprentice that works on the contract.
McCraySen. McFadden
HB 370 received
an unfavorable
report (13-8-1)
in the House Economic Matters
Committee.SB 777 is awaiting a vote in the Senate
Finance Committee.
Task Force to Study the Expansion of Career and 
Technical Education in
MarylandSB 624
This bill would create a task force to study the possibility of expanding Career and Technical education in Maryland. Sen. Currie SB 624 is awaiting a vote in the full Senate.
Justice Reinvestment Coordinating 
CouncilSB 602
HB 388
The legislation would establish a council that
will develop statewide strategies to increase
public safety and reduce recidivism.
Sen. Miller
Del. Dumais
SB 602
unanimously passed the full Senate. It will be heard at 1 p.m. on March 25 in the House Judiciary Committee.HB 388 passed the full House by
a vote of 118-20. It is awaiting a
hearing in the
Senate Judicial Proceedings

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