With HB0001 amendments still coming and going right up to its third floor reading, we are still pushing for, at the very least, amendments that would minimize damage to employers, and to employees whose jobs may be threatened by the mandate. We are not alone on that push, and lawmakers have noticed. Though willingness to revise the bill is limited, we have not given up, and we are seeing some signs of understanding for our position.
Meanwhile, four bills we worked to defeat received unfavorable reports in committee; most notably, they include HB0665/SB0607, an overtime exemption bill that would result in fewer available positions, hours and benefits for employees, as well as a reduction in raises for anyone working in a salaried position.
Three other bills, HB0215, HB0691 and HB1332/SB0697, would have raised the cost of doing business in Maryland if they’d passed committee. Our testimony helped prevent that.
In addition to these wins for business, we also offered testimony bills dealing with the minimum wage, pay stub information, taxation and punitive damages.
The Chamber is planning a long-term initiatives to help develop a talent pipeline so that young workers are trained well and ready to work as soon as they finish school. Given that initiative, we have also testified on bills relating to tuition assistance, increased apprenticeship programs, and non-degreed vocational grant programs.
As of Friday, Sine Die was one month away. The Chamber will continue to work vigorously to foster an environment that creates jobs instead of killing them and strengthens employers instead of weakening them. If you would like to help, let us know.
As always, please contact us with issues of concern or ways legislation could impact you.
If you’re a member, you can log in to mdchamber.org to find out more on our testimony and positions.