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Legislation

Photo of book with Law typed along the spine of book with mallot sitting on book.During the legislative session, the Maryland Governor’s Office of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing is responsible for monitoring various bills that enter the state legislature and may potentially impact the needs of Deaf and hard of hearing Marylanders. The office also ensures that the community remains informed of updates on hearings and votes on bills already introduced.

How Our Laws Are Made

To understand more about the legislative process and how a bill becomes a law, please review How a Bill Becomes Law.

This flowchart on the Maryland General Assembly may help you understand its structure. It will be helpful to also explore their website.

2017 Legislative Session

Citizens are encouraged to testify on issues of concern to them. To submit a written or oral testimony, please attend the bill’s scheduled hearing and refer to the Department of Legislative Services’ guidelines on providing testimonies; in particular, you will need to arrive early to sign the witness sheet before the hearing begins (typically at least an hour in advance) and provide copies of your testimony.

As the date gets closer to the hearing, the weekly hearing schedule will specify the number of copies of written testimony required and when to show up to sign the witness sheet before a hearing begins.

Please contact the Department of Legislative Services if you need accommodations for the hearing, such as sign language interpreters.

Scheduled Budget Hearings for the Office (2017)

  • February 22nd, House of Delegates, Health and Human Resources Subcommittee
    • Room 150, HOB – 1:00 pm
  • February 23rd, Senate, Health and Human Services Subcommittee
    • 3 West, Miller – 1:00 pm

The full schedule of all budget hearings is available here.

Scheduled Bill Hearings (2017) 

Below are some bills that the office is currently monitoring. To learn more about each bill, please click on the bill’s Legislative Resource Guide, if available.

Bill

Information about Bill

Scheduled Hearings / Status

HB 1645 – Task Force to Study Mental Health Concerns for Deaf and Hard of Hearing Individuals Pending
SB 1150 – Sign Language Instruction for Parents and Guardians Senate: March 22, 2017 at 1 p.m. – CANCELLED; SB 1150 withdrawn.
HB 254 – Closed Captioning Activation Required Without Request House of Delegates: February 8, 2017 at 1 p.m.

Pending

HB 343 – Special Deafness Registration Plate House of Delegates: February 16, 2017 at 1 p.m.

Decided UNFAVORABLE by House Environment and Transportation Committee [3/1/17]

SB 248 – Senior Call-Check and Notification Program

HB 601 (cross-filed)

Senate: February 7, 2017 at 1 p.m.

Pending

House of Delegates: February 16, 2017 at 1 p.m.

HB 601 second reading passed FAVORABLE WITH AMENDMENTS by House Economic Matters Committee [3/8/17]

HB 601 third reading PASSED (102 – 34) [3/10/17]

HB 601 in Senate for first reading by Finance Committee [3/13/17]

Senate: March 28, 2017 at 1 p.m.

HB 601 second reading passed FAVORABLE by Senate Finance Committee [3/30/17]

HB 601 third reading PASSED (44 – 0) [3/31/17]

HB 601 approved by the Governor [5/25/17]

HB 352 – Use of Teletherapy

SB 1106 (cross-filed)

House of Delegates: February 8, 2017 at 1 p.m.

HB 352 second reading passed FAVORABLE WITH AMENDMENTS by House Health and Government Operations Committee  [3/14/17]

HB 352 third reading PASSED (141-0) [3/15/17]

HB 352 in Senate for first reading by Education, Health, and Environmental Affairs Committee [3/16/17]

CROSS-FILED BILL

SB 1106 second reading passed FAVORABLE WITH AMENDMENTS by Senate Education, Health, and Environmental Affairs Committee  [3/20/17]

SB 1106 third reading PASSED (47-0) [3/21/17]

SB 1106 in House of Delegates for first reading by Rules and Executive Nominations Committee [3/22/17]