From State Sen. J.B. Jennings:
Bill Introduced to Give Rights to International Election Observers
This week, a terrible piece of legislation (SB 190) was considered in the Senate that would give the following rights to International Election Observers:
Vote- Entrance to the polling place one-half hour before the polls open.
– Entrance/presence at the polling place at any time when the polls are open.
– Presence in the polling place until the completion of all tasks associated with the close of the polls.
– Protection by a police officer who is on duty at a polling place.
– Examination of polling lists.
This bill gives foreign nationals the same rights as poll watchers when it comes to observing our electoral process. Given the constant accusations from some of the Russians colluding with the 2016 election, I find the introduction of this bill giving protected rights to foreign nationals observing our polls very ironic. The bill passed the Senate Education, Health and Environmental Affairs Committee and is still on the floor of the Senate.
Rape Survivor Protection Act Signed into Law
On Tuesday, Governor Hogan signed emergency legislation which terminates the parental rights of an individual convicted of or found to have committed an act of non-consensual sexual conduct against the other parent that resulted in the conception of a child. Not only does this new law prevent rapists from having parental rights, it also ensures that victims will not be forced to interact with their attackers.
Hogans Visit to Baltimore County
On Monday, I joined Governor Hogan, his cabinet, citizens and various representatives at his regional cabinet meeting in Baltimore County. The Governor outlined his administration’s commitment to attracting jobs, funding school improvements and planning infrastructure improvements in the county. To date, Baltimore County is the second largest job center in the state. I was glad to witness various awards being given to deserving community leaders, state employees and public safety workers for their contributions to Baltimore County. A special shout-out was given to the Eastern Technical High School boys soccer team, winners of the state soccer championship in 2017 and great representatives of Maryland’s 7th District. Additionally the Governor toured various locations in Baltimore County including Dulaney High School, which i am a proud graduate of.
House Fails to Act in Time to Delay Implementation of Paid Sick Leave
As I mentioned last week, the Maryland General Assembly voted to override the Governor’s veto of the Paid Sick Leave Act. One issue of considerable debate prior to the Senate vote for the override was the concern that the legislation’s effective date was Sunday, February 11th. Without a change of the effective date, the law would go into effect 30 days after the veto…clearly not enough time to allow the adoption of rules for the law to be promulgated by the Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation and followed by Maryland businesses. Essentially leaving businesses without regulations by which they must adhere to.
The Senate passed emergency legislation laws last week to delay the bill from going into law until this summer. Unfortunately, the House failed to act and the bill took effect on Sunday, causing countless of unprepared businesses to face extreme fines and penalties. The Governor created the Office of Small Business Regulatory Assistance in an effort to help small businesses comply with the new law. The office will be required to report problems encountered by small businesses complying with the law and its regulations to the Governor and the General Assembly, and recommend policy improvements. The Office of Small Business Regulatory Assistance can be reached at email@example.com.
Changing of Guard
On Sunday, I was honored to attend the Change of Command Ceremony for the 175th Wing of the Maryland Air National Guard. Brig. Gen. Staudenraus, who had been the Commander of the 175th, relinquished command to Brig. Gen. Paul Johnson. Brig. Gen. Johnson takes command of over 1,400 personnel supporting an A-10 Group, an Intelligence Squadron and the first ANG Cyber Ops Group. Although I will miss working with Brig. Gen Staudenraus, I’m excited to begin working with Brig. Gen. Johnson to ensure the 175th Wing remains one of the best trained and equipped Air National Guard Bases in the Country.
Your feedback is important to me, and helps me more accurately represent your interests in Annapolis. As always, if you have any questions or concerns please do not hesitate to contact me.
Senator J.B. Jennings