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.
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.
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|SB 1150 – Sign Language Instruction for Parents and Guardians||Senate: March 22, 2017 at 1 p.m. – CANCELLED; SB 1150 withdrawn.|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||
|HB 343 – Special Deafness Registration Plate||
Decided UNFAVORABLE by House Environment and Transportation Committee [3/1/17]
|SB 248 – Senior Call-Check and Notification Program
HB 601 (cross-filed)
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]
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)
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]
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]