Legislative Wrap-Up Provides Insights into the 2024 Legislative Session

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On Thursday, April 27th, The Harford County Chamber of Commerce hosted their annual Legislative Wrap-Up event, hosted by Richlin Catering & Events Center and sponsored by Harford Community College, BGE, and University of Maryland Upper Chesapeake Health. The event featured a panel of Maryland Delegates and Senators to discuss the results of the 2024 Maryland Legislative Session and key
priorities for next year. The panel consisted of Senator Jason Gallion – District 35, Delegate Susan McComas – District 34B, Delegate Andre Johnson – District 34A, Delegate Teresa Reilly – District 35A, and Delegate Lauren Arikan – District 7B . Delegate Mike Griffith – District 35A and Senator J.B. Jennings – District 7 were not in attendance, but provided written letters to attendees with their summary of the session.

Harford Chamber Board Chair, Brianne Baccaro Norris of Weyric, Cronin, Sorra, welcomed guests and recognized dignitaries in attendance. Dr. Theresa Felder, President of Harford Community College, Elizabeth Wise, President & CEO of University of Maryland Upper Chesapeake Health, and Christiano Quijano, Interim External Affairs Manager of BGE, offered sponsor remarks. Angela Rose, President &
CEO of the Harford County Chamber of Commerce, welcomed and introduced the delegates and senators in attendance. Each gave a summary of the legislation they introduced or co-sponsored this session as well as took questions from attendees.

Senator Jason Gallion opened with remarks on the Maryland budget deficits, mainly driven by the Blueprint for Education. Senator Gallion shared updates from the Education, Energy, & Environment committee, which included bills on juvenile justice, renewable energy, and affordable housing. Delegate McComas echoed concerns over the budget deficits, but remarked that she was glad to see 12 million dollars coming to Harford County for capital projects. She also noted the elimination of the state retiree
prescription drug plan and debated the Freedom to Read bill.

Delegate Arikan spoke on several juvenile justice bills including an amendment to remove minor sex offenders from attending public school in person, and the Victim’s Rights bill which informs victims of their offenders release. Delegate Johnson thanked the delegation for their teamwork this session. He noted the strides made this year for women and minority-owned businesses, creating a new 10,000 grant program, as well as veteran support. He also shared efforts to protect the pay of government workers in case of a government shutdown. Delegate Reilly continued to note the bills passed in support of veterans, citing that they secured September 30th as Veterans Suicide Prevention Day. She also noted the increase in insurance coverages through the Maryland Health Exchange and plans to fight for lower taxes in next year’s session.

About the Harford County Chamber of Commerce: The Harford County Chamber of Commerce has worked continually as the recognized voice of business in Harford County since 1976. The Harford Chamber is the premier business advocate in the county, helping members connect and thrive to create a vibrant economy across all sectors.
For more information or become a Harford County Chamber member, please contact Natalie Pixley at [email protected]

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