4/10/2015 – JOTF Policy Update
Maryland Second Chance Act Surges Ahead
Thanks to your support, and an hour of debate on the House floor, harmful amendments to the Maryland Second Chance Act have been defeated. This critical piece of legislation will move on to a final vote this weekend.
Please take a moment and call members of the House of Delegates and ask them to vote in favor of HB 244, the Maryland Second Chance Act of 2015.
JOTF Legislative Priorities
|Healthy Working Families Act
|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.||Law makers announced
they will not vote on the Healthy Working Families Act
Melissa Broome.Fox 45 Coverage
Chance Act of 2015HB 244
|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 passed the House Judiciary Committee as amended (14-6) and has received preliminary approval from the full House. SB 526 passed the full Senate unanimously.
It now awaits a vote in the House Judiciary
|Fact SheetFor more information or
to provide support, contact Caryn Aslan
|Criminal Records Expungement –
|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. An amended
version of the bill passed the full Senate by a vote of 44-3. SB 652 passed the
full Senate by a vote of 41 -1. It was amended
and passed the full House with a vote of 88-50.
|Fact SheetFor more information or
to provide support, contact Caryn Aslan.
Court and Police
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.
It now awaits a vote in the Senate Judicial Proceedings
|“Expungement should be
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
|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 Committee.|
|Limits on Use of Leave for Birth,
Placement or Care
of ChildHB 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 was amended
and received preliminary approval from
the full Senate.
Conviction of a
Crime that is No Longer a CrimeSB 651
|This legislation would allow a person to petition for expungement of criminal records for crimes that are no longer considered illegal.||Sen. Muse
|SB 651 passed the full Senate with a vote of 41-6 and passed the full House with a vote of 90-48.HB 124 passed the
full House with a vote of 93-46 and
unanimously passed the full Senate.
|Commercial Law –
Consumer Protection –
|This legislation would establish procedures for people to request the removal of a mug shot from websites if charges or court record associated with the image have been shielded, expunged or otherwise kept from public access.||Del. Carter||HB 744 passed the
full House unanimously and received preliminary approval from the full Senate.
|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 consent.
|SB 688 has been withdrawn.HB 969 has been
|Overwork Prohibition ActHB 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
|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. RosapepeDel. Washington||SB 816 was
passed the full Senate unanimously.
It was amended
and passed the full House by a vote
of 134-3.HB 779 was amended and passed the full house with
a vote of 131 -5. It was amended and
has received preliminary approval from the full 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.
Community College –
Public High SchoolsSB 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
Pay It Forward
|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. ReznikSen.
|HB 57 has
beenwithdrawn.SB 237 is awaiting a
vote in the Senate Budget and Taxation
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
& Hour Law –
Wage – IncreaseHB 4
|The legislation would increase the state minimum wage to $10.10 hour beginning July 1, 2015.||Del. Glenn||HB 4 received
report (18 – 2)from the House Economic
Wage Rate –
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 Judicial Proceedings
|Equal Pay for Equal WorkSB 424
|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.
|SB 424 is awaiting a
vote in the Senate Finance Committee.HB 1051 has been
|Fiscal Notes –
|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.
|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
|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.
|HB 370 received
in the House Economic Matters
Committee.SB 777 received an unfavorable report (11-0) in the Senate
|Task Force to Study the
Expansion of Career and
Technical Education in
|This bill would create a task force to study the possibility of expanding Career and Technical education in Maryland.||Sen. Currie||SB 624unanimously
passed the full Senate. It now awaits a vote in the House Ways and Means Committee.
|Justice Reinvestment Coordinating
|The legislation would establish a council that will develop statewide strategies to increase public safety and reduce recidivism.||Sen. Miller
unanimously passed the full Senate and passed the full House by a vote of 126-10. The bill has been returned
to the Senate and now moves to the governor.HB 388 passed the full House by a vote of118-20. It passed the full Senate unanimously. The bill has been returned to the House and now moves to the