During the legislative session, the Maryland Governor’s Office of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing is responsible for monitoring various bills that are introduced in the state legislature and may be of interest to Deaf and hard of hearing Marylanders. The office also ensures that the community remains informed of updates on hearings and votes on pending legislation. While the Governor’s Office does not endorse specific bills, Deaf and hard of hearing Marylanders are encouraged to get involved, be informed, and make their concerns known to their elected officials.
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. The office also has a video series of the legislative process in ASL on Facebook and YouTube.
This flowchart on the Maryland General Assembly may help you understand its structure. It will be helpful to also explore the Maryland General Assembly’s website and learn about the dates of interest for the 2020 session.
2020 Legislative Session
Citizens may testify on issues of concern to them. To submit a written or oral testimony, please attend the bill’s scheduled hearing; 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.
Each committee has its own rules on how to offer testimony. Should the rules/guidelines change, please contact that specific committee.
- Senate Budget & Taxation: How to Testify
- Senate Education, Health, & Environmental Affairs: How to Testify
- Senate Finance: How to Testify
- Senate Judicial Proceedings: How to Testify
- Senate Executive Nominations: How to Testify
- House Appropriations: How to Testify
- House Economic Matters: How to Testify
- House Environment & Transportation: How to Testify
- House Health & Government Operations: How to Testify
- House Judiciary: How to Testify
- House Ways & Means: How to Testify
- House Rules & Executive Nominations: How to Testify
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 Bill Hearings (2020)
Below are some bills that the office is currently monitoring. To find out the current status of each bill and its scheduled hearings, click on the bill’s link for more information: