This article contains commentary which reflects the author's opinion
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The Maryland General Assembly concluded its 2019 legislative session on Sine Die – April 8, 2019. Marylander’s should be exceedingly grateful that incumbent Republican Governor Larry Hogan was reelected as Governor of Maryland. Unfortunately, this does not impede the democrats from passing counterproductive legislation in Annapolis harmful to both Maryland families and businesses.
SB280: $15 Minimum Wage – Gubernatorial Veto Override
On a party line vote, the Senate overrode Governor Hogan’s veto on legislation that will raise Maryland’s minimum wage to $15/hour by 2025, and 2026 for businesses with 14 employees or less. What one could call the “Youth & Retiree Job Elimination Act”, could cost Maryland as much as 100,000 jobs, and hurt Maryland’s economic competitiveness.
State Senator Justin Ready supported the Governor’s veto, and opposed this artificial wage hike that puts Maryland workers and businesses at a competitive disadvantage.
SB1050: Non-Partisan Redistricting – No movement out of committee
St. Sen. Ready co-sponsored legislation with Governor Hogan to create a non-partisan commission to redraw Maryland’s congressional and legislative maps. Maryland’s districts are the poster-child for gerrymandering at its worst. In the last redistricting process, districts were drawn to stifle political competition and deprive citizens of the opportunity to fairly participate in the election process.
In response to the U.S. District Court’s order to redraw the 6th Congressional District in time for the 2020 election, the Governor signed an executive order that created a bipartisan commission to examine Maryland’s redistricting process. That work is ongoing and the Supreme Court is reviewing the case.
SB128/HB437: Labor Day School Start – Gubernatorial Veto Override
The majority of Marylanders supported Governor Hogan’s 2016 executive order that public schools begin after Labor Day. The Maryland General Assembly overrode the Governor’s veto of legislation to rescind the Governor’s 2016 executive order. Starting school before Labor Day is detrimental to tourism and agricultural areas.
SB537: Expand the Dream Act – Passed
One of the “under the radar” bills that passed during the Maryland 2019 legislative session was the Expand Maryland Dream Act, which wipes away many restrictions placed on illegal-immigrants receiving in-state tuition at Maryland four-year universities.
The standards of eligibility previously in place [mandatory attendance of Maryland high school for three years, prior completion of community college education, and others] were necessary to ensure fairness and proper assimilation into the Maryland School system. St. Sen. Ready voted No, just as he has in years passed with similar legislative initiatives.
Legislative Odds & Ends
Raising the minimum wage in Maryland is just another tired ploy by the democrats to garner votes from the populace on Election Day. It’s shameful that they are willing to place workers and jobs at risk so the left can overwhelm the ballot box.
Redistricting has become even worse in Maryland as democrats refuse to comply and draw more competitive election districts. Maryland has become increasingly stagnant while one-party rule stifles debate and an open dialogue to discuss viable political solutions for Maryland.
The Tuesday immediately after Labor Day is the perfect day to begin a new school year, but the democrats oppose this proposal and struck down Governor Hogan’s desire to rectify the school calendar. Them dems do it again by expanding bad legislation passed in 2012. Illegal-immigrants were gifted one-third of their tuition in a Maryland institution as an in-state student.
Now all requirements that these students should meet in order to be eligible to receive one-third of their tuition have been lifted. So now Maryland taxpayers continue to pay a portion of illegal-immigrant tuition fees and these same students are now absolved from the mandatory criteria to apply for classes that the children of taxpayers must adhere to because it’s the fair thing to do!
Timothy Tilghman is a Columnist for NRN. Born in Baltimore, Maryland, Tilghman earned a Master of Arts degree in verbal and visual communications in December 2002. He has hosted a weekly radio program since June 2010. He has been a contributing Reporter to the Northern News since July 2013, which publishes weekly in Carroll County. Tilghman has written for two collegiate campus newspapers and published several independent newsletters.