News from Annapolis - April 4, 2017
Hello, neighbors!

We have one week left in the Maryland General Assembly's 2017 legislative session. I want to share with you recent progress and let you know what's to come.
Please keep in touch!

Legislative News

Maryland banned fracking!  (hydraulic fracturing)

We did it! Thank you to those who advocated for the fracking ban. Your voices were heard throughout Annapolis and across the State. Maryland will do better by building our growing clean energy economy. The fracking ban (HB1325) may be one of the most historic environmental wins to go through our legislature in ages, and I am proud to have supported it over the years.  We are choosing to sustain a future for our children, our economy, and our planet.
  My school bus safety bill and other bills advance: 

On March 20th, the Maryland House of Delegates overwhelmingly passed several of my bills:
  • Rental Car Exemption Repeal (HB263) - Closes a loophole in the law that's letting drivers who endanger our kids by driving around stopped school buses get off free if they're in a rental car
  • Motor Vehicle Beneficiaries (HB 492) - protects your assets by codifying and streamlining MVA's existing practice of allowing vehicle owners to designate a beneficiary on the title
  • WSSC Anti-Discrimination (HB 355) - brings WSSC's discrimination protections up to speed by adding religion, marital status and gender identity to existing categories of protection
  • Homestead Property Tax Credit Deadlines (HB 263) - gives counties and municipalities more time and flexibility each year to set the cap on assessment increases
These bills were then heard in the Senate and await action.


Many of my colleagues' important bills which I support are advancing:
  • METRORAIL SAFETY COMPACT (HB119) - As the house chair of the Joint Committee on Federal Relations, I had the opportunity to work to advance this critical safety legislation. As a compact, the identical legislation had to be passed by Maryland, Virginia and the District of Columbia. I am pleased the Governor signed it after passage in both the House and Senate.
  • FIGHTING OBAMACARE REPEAL (HJ 9) - this resolution to Congress highlights the numerous catastrophic consequences Maryland would face from repeal of the Affordable Care Act.
  • ENSURING PUBLIC ACCESS TO GOVERNMENT RECORDS (HB 383) - This bill requires state and local government agencies to explain themselves when they deny public information requests. This legislation would require that they describe why they couldn't simply redact sensitive information instead of denying the request outright.
  • ADVANCING EARNED SICK LEAVE (HB 1) This bill requires employers with 15 or more employees to provide paid sick leave for their workers. Marylanders shouldn't have to choose between their paycheck and their health, especially if they're going to come work sick. Gov. Hogan vowed to veto this legislation, but we passed it with veto-proof margins.
  • LIMITING POLICE DEPORTATIONS & PROFILING (HB 1362) - The Maryland House approved the "Trust Act," which prohibits our police from randomly stopping residents and asking about their immigration status. The legislation also requires the feds to produce a warrant before we will turn people over for deportation.  The bill now awaits action in the Senate. 
  • REPEALING OBSOLETE CALLS FOR A CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION (HJ2) - This joint resolution repealed several resolutions that the Maryland General Assembly had passed decades ago using an obscure provision of the U.S. Constitution.
  • ENDING HOUSING DISCRIMINATION (HB 172) - I was proud to co-sponsor and vote for the "Home Act," which prohibits housing discrimination against prospective tenants based on their source of income such as those who have government subsidized housing (eg: veterans & lower-income families). This policy has been the law for decades in Montgomery County, Frederick County, Howard County and Annapolis. The statewide bill now awaits action in the Senate.
  • CURBING ANTIBIOTICS IN OUR FOOD (HB 602) - The House & Senate passed a bill to ban the routine use of antibiotics in food-producing animals that are not sick. This will help prevent the creation of "superbugs" and keep our antiobiotics effective. The bill now awaits action in the Senate.
  • REDUCING OVERTESTING OF STUDENTS (HB 461) - I'm pleased to report that in the House, we passed a bill to limit the amount of classroom learning time that may be spent on standardized testing to 2%. The bill now awaits action in the Senate.
  • FUNDING PLANNED PARENTHOOD (HB 1083) - This legislation will protect Marylanders' access to cancer screening, contraceptives and STD testing if President Trump defunds Planned Parenthood. The bill has passed both the House and the Senate.
  • COMBATING PHARMACEUTICAL PRICE-GOUGING (HB 602) - The House passed a bill this year to allow Attorney General Brian Frosh to sue drug manufacturers that engage in price gouging. The bill now awaits action in the Senate.
Governor signs Metro Safety Compact legislation
Governor Signs Metro Safety Compact Legislation

Community News 

The demolition of the Wheaton Library is scheduled for April 6, 2017 at 10am.  The new library is scheduled to be completed by summer of 2018.

TAX CREDIT DEADLINE: (April 15th is not the only important tax day!)
If you are a homeowner with an income of $60,000 or less, you may be eligible for the Homeowners Property Tax Credit. The deadline is in September, but if you are eligible and apply by  May 1, 2017 , you will receive the credit on your July County property tax bill. The County supplements this tax credit with additional break for seniors. More information here: Homeowners' Property Tax Credit Program


Thank you to everyone who joined me and my family last Saturday in Kensington to pack Comfort Cases for children in the foster care system!   No More Trash Bags is the website where you can find more information about this amazing charity and how to help! 

In case you missed it - My Recently Discovered Deep Maryland Roots
Last month a local community TV station did a story about my family history and featured my remarks on the floor of the Maryland House of Delegates. Click below to watch the short video.

Delegate Al Carr's family history
Delegate Al Carr's family history

Del Carr and 2017 Session Staff Kyle, Max, Mike & Shelby
If you called, emailed or visited my Annapolis office recently you were in the hands of my hard-working 2017 session staff. Many thanks to Kyle Vaughan, Maxwell Swan, Mike Ibironke and Shelby Kestler for their efforts!

Be sure to check out my Facebook page and Twitter to keep up to date about whats happening in Annapolis and District 18.
Delegate Al Carr   6 Bladen Street, Room 222, Annapolis, MD 21401
301 858-3638