March 22, 2024

Ready Report: Fighting Tax Increases & Celebrating Down Syndrome Day

The tenth full week of the 2024 Maryland General Assembly Legislative Session has concluded. Here is a brief update on what happened this week in Annapolis.

Weekly Video Update

Click the image below to watch this week’s video update from Annapolis.

Ready in the Press – Statehouse Spotlight

Tuesday morning, I joined WBFF Fox 45 opposite Senator Jill Carter to discuss the aftermath of Crossover Monday and what’s happening on the budget, taxes and crime. You can watch by clicking here.

Fighting Against Tax and Fee Increases for Working Families and Gun Owners

This week, bills passed by the House of Delegates during the 2024 legislative session passed over to the Senate for our consideration. I have concerns over a lot of different issues that House Democrats have sent over to us, however, one of the biggest is tax and fee increases.

The Senate passed a balance version of the “budget bill” without raising any taxes on Maryland citizens. However, the House of Delegates passed a balanced budget that adds in $1.3 Billion in new taxes in a variety of different areas. This includes a tax when you trade in your car, and several cooperate taxes. I will be fighting to keep taxes and fees from increasing for working families throughout the rest of Session.

Another bill (not related to the budget bill), SB 784, which nearly doubles the sales tax on the purchase of firearms, firearm accessories, and ammunition in the state of Maryland. Most of the tax revenue generated from this tax will go to help fund the Shock Trauma System and State Helicopter emergency program. Although there are legitimate funding issues with Shock Trauma because of increased costs, targeting one group to raise taxes on is absolutely wrong. We should put Shock Trauma funding in our regular budget as one of the first priority items, not be trying to create special taxes for it.

I offered remarks on the Senate floor against this bill, and the targeting of gun owners in Maryland. Throughout my time in the Maryland General Assembly, law-abiding citizens who practice their 2nd Amendment rights legally, and safely have been the most legislatively targeted group. I will continue to stand up for Marylanders’ 2nd Amendment rights in Annapolis.

You can watch my remarks on the Senate floor by clicking here.

World Down Syndrome Day

Thursday was World Down Syndrome Day. In the Senate we passed a resolution recognizing the Maryland Down Syndrome Advocacy Coalition for their work to ensure the rights and well-being of all people with Down Syndrome. The Down Syndrome community likes to wear mismatched socks to celebrate how their genetic variation contributes to the tapestry of humanity. I wore a pair along with many of my colleagues.

This is a great day to celebrate the uniqueness of all individuals and how these amazing people bring joy to all of us. This picture is of me and some of the Down Syndrome advocates that were visiting on the floor today.

Senatorial Scholarships Available

If you are or know a high school senior or college student, please consider applying for a Senatorial Scholarship.  For more information or to request an application, email Emily Van Horn at [email protected] and include your full address.  Scholarships will be accepted up to April 15, 2024.

As always, if you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact me anytime. My office can be reached by emailing [email protected], and my staff and I will do our best to get back to you in a timely manner. Have a great rest of the week!

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