News from Annapolis
2017 Session:  Week 10                      Delegate Trent Kittleman - District 9A
  • Response to Child Marriage Ban Survey
  • House kills Redistricting Bill
  • "Home Act" passes House
  • "Sanctuary State" bill update & survey
  • Fun with Facts: Government Promises
  • Legislative Scholarship Information
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Child Marriage Ban:  UPDATE
Thank you for your opinions!
          I very much appreciate everyone who responded to the survey.  This was, and continues to be, an interesting and difficult issue.  I voted for the amendment and the bill.  Even though the amendment failed in the House, it may be added when the Senate takes up the bill.  Here are the results of the survey.
House "Rules" Committee Kills Redistricting -- WITHOUT DISCUSSION
Gerrymandering  trumps Fairness
          A federal judge once described Maryland's third Congressional District - as a  "broken-winged pterodactyl lying prostrate across the center of the state."  
         In an effort to end in Maryland what is clearly a nation-wide practice of designing election districts to advantage majority party candidates, Governor Hogan once again submitted his Redistricting bill to the General Assembly.  And once again, the House of Delegates chose to ignore it.  This week, Democrats on the Rules and Executive Nominations committee voted to kill the bill -- along a straight 18-5 party-line vote -- without so much as a discussion on the merits of the bill. 
         The Senate took a slightly different path this year, approving a bill that would enact the Governor's non-partisan redistricting commission -- but only if five other mid-Atlantic states do the same!  
          The likelihood of that happening is less not high.
The "Home Act" 
Prohibits refusal to sell or rent to someone based on their "source of income"
           HB 172 passed the Maryland House of Delegates on an 88-53 vote, with three Democrats joining all 50 Republicans against the bill.  The bill prohibits discrimination based on a person's "source of income" however, the final WHEREAS clause in the bill's preamble clarifies the intent of the bill:
          " WHEREAS, This Act seeks to de-concentrate poverty by providing additional opportunities for tenants utilizing public subsidies to live in neighborhoods other than the neighborhoods in which those individuals are currently and disproportionately residing."
          In other words, the  purpose of the bill is to require landlords to accept individuals and families who receive income from "Section 8" funding in order to "de-concentrate" poverty.  
          In Maryland, the Section 8 program is called the Housing Choice Voucher Program.  Eligible families receive a voucher which allows them to seek rental housing of their choice.  To be eligible, the family or individual must have annual incomes of 50 percent or less of the area median income.
         The bill requires the owner of an apartment complex to rent or make available for rent 15% of the units to "persons who receive housing assistance vouchers."   The owner or landlord may still consider the ability of an applicant to pay the rent by "verifying in a commercially reasonable and nondiscriminatory manner, the source and amount of income," and may refuse to consider income derived from criminal activity.  
          In addition, the bill actively looks to place people with Section 8 vouchers in zip codes where there currently aren't many being used, by specifically exempting areas in which "at least 6% of the total number of housing assistance vouchers" administered in the State are currently used. 
State Sanctuary Bill:  UPDATE
Maryland vying with California to be "most liberal" state
          Five Democrats joined every House Republican to vote against HB 1362, "The Immigration Community Trust Act" this past week.  Nonetheless, the bill passed the House by a vote of  83-55. 
         The majority also defeated an amendment proposed by Minority Leader Nic Kipke that would have prevented this protection from covering terrorists or felons. 
        Below is the list of how House members voted on the bill. 
What the bill specifically does
          This bill will tie the hands of local and state law enforcement to  cooperate with federal immigration efforts and would expressly prohibit local law enforcement from detaining a person upon whom the Department of Homeland Security has issued an I-247D detainer.   
         Specifically, h
ere are the only reasons for which this detainer would be issued:
1) is suspected of terrorism or poses a danger to national security 
2) is a member/participant in a street gang or organized crime
3) has been convicted of a felony other than illegal immigration
4) has been convicted of an aggravated felony
5) has been convicted of a significant misdemeanor as determined by Homeland Security policy
        6) has been convicted of 3 or more misdemeanors, not relating to traffic or immigration status.

Governor Hogan's Reaction
After the passage of the bill, Governor Hogan said,
"The Maryland House of Delegates tonight passed an outrageously irresponsible bill that will make Maryland a sanctuary state and endanger our citizens. This legislation would interfere with our state and local law enforcement's ability to cooperate with federal law enforcement authorities." 

         The bill has now gone to the Senate, where the cross-filed bill (SB 835) has not yet been voted upon in committee. 

"Government Promises" . . .

What Government promised us about Social Security PROMISED 

          President Franklin D. Roosevelt introduced the Social Security (FICA) Program in 1935.  At that time, the bill promised: 
1.    That the number and card were not to be used for identification purposes.   The  original card was imprinted with the message: "not for identification!"  
BUT . . .  In the 1980's, the legend "not for identification" was removed, and today, your social security number is used for identification randomly.

2.    That participation in the Program covered only certain jobs (jobs in commerce and industry, but not government workers, lawyers, farm workers, lawyers, railroad workers, etc. ), covering about half the country's workers. 
BUT . . . ALL  of those exemptions have now been phased out.

3.    That the rate participants would have to pay was only 1% on the first $3,000 of earnings at the law's inception (1935), increased to 3% on the first $3,000 by 1949
BUT . . .  We now pay  7.65% on the first $118,500 as of 2015

4.     That the money the participants paid into the fund would be kept in the Social Security Trust Fund, and would only used to fund the Social Security Retirement Program and no other Government program.  
  BUT . . . Under President Lyndon Johnson in 1968, the Trust Fund was put into a unified budget with the General Fund and used for other purposes.

5.     That the annuity payments to the retirees would never be taxed as income.
BUT . . .  Under President Bill Clinton, up to 85% of your Social Security became taxable. 
Scholarship Information
District 9A residents attending a college, university, trade school or equivalent in the State of Maryland are eligible for the Delegate Scholarship.

Current high school seniors and full-time (12+ credits per semester) or part-time (6-11 credits per semester), degree-seeking under-graduate students, graduate students, and students attending a private career school may apply. 
Click here for the application. For questions regarding the application process, please call my Annapolis office and ask to speak with Chelsea Leigh Murphy at 410-841-3556.  

Please be sure to have your completed application postmarked by  April 10, 2017.
Delegate Trent Kittleman
District 9A, Western Howard County and Southern Carroll County (Sykesville)
Room 202, Lowe House Office Building
6 Bladen Street,   Annapolis, MD 21401
410-841-3556  *   Trent.Kittleman@House.State.MD.US
Interim Office
3000 Kittleman Lane,  West Friendship, MD 21794
301-661-3344  *
Administrative AideChelsea Leigh Murphy