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A look at hot button issues addressed during Maryland's 2021 legislative session

Maryland legislature passes women's rights bills
Posted at 10:55 AM, Apr 13, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-13 17:38:52-04

ANNAPOLIS, Md. — Midnight Tuesday marked the last day of the Maryland General Assembly's 2021 Legislative Session.

A litany of hot button issues were addressed by the Democrat majority in the state House and Senate, including police reform, education, voting, and immigration.

Many of the bills passed have already reached Governor Hogan's desk, some of which he's vetoed prompting the legislature to have to override him.

Here's a small review.


HB0016 - Prohibits State and local jurisdictions from entering into agreements with private entities for purposes of detaining people related to their immigration status. Those same jurisdictions would also not be allowed to approving zoning variances or permits for the construction or reuse of buildings to house immigration-related detainees without public notification and required governmental entities to terminate existing contracts for the detention of immigration-related detainees by October 1, 2022.

HB0023 - Would prevent federal agencies from gaining access to MVA records for certain immigration enforcement unless a valid warrant is obtained. Employees would also be barred from disclosing the information to a federal agent or agency. An annual report would have to be submitted to the General Assembly.

So far Hogan has not indicated if he plans to sign or veto the bills.


HB0206 - Requires early voting centers to open from 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. on early voting days in elections other than for President.

HB0222 - Requires the Department of Corrections to provide each released individual with a voter registration application and documentation that their voting rights have been restored. The bill also requires those facilities to provide a drop box for inmates to submit election-related materials and establishes a Voting Rights Ombudsman to oversee the implementation process.

HB0745 - Allows counties to add an additional early voting center than what is required with the local board of elections determining the location based on its accessibility to historically disenfranchised communities, proximity to dense concentrations of voters, where public transportation is available, and equitable distribution of centers in the county.

So far Hogan has not indicated if he plans to sign or veto the bills.


Blueprint for Maryland's Future centers around a $4 billion education plan put together by Dr. Brit Kirwan, Chairman in the Commission on Innovation and Excellence in Education. In its first five-years, the bill calls for increases in state funding for educational initiatives such as the expansion of full-day prekindergarten for low-income children, teacher pay raises, special education services, and enhanced college and career readiness programs including career technical education.

Governor Hogan vetoed the bill, but the General Assembly overrode the bill allowing it to become law.


The General Assembly overrode Hogan's vetoes on the following bills:

  • SB 71 - Maryland Police Accountability Act of 2021 - Body-Worn Cameras - Employee Programs, and Use of Force
  • SB 178 - Maryland Police Accountability Act of 2021 - Search Warrants and Inspection of Records Relating to Police Misconduct
  • HB 670 - Police Reform and Accountability Act of 2021
  • SB 494 - Juveniles Convicted as Adults - Sentencing - Limitations and Reduction (Juvenile Restoration Act)


Governor Larry Hogan signed the RELIEF Act into law, clearing the way for direct stimulus payments to about 400,000 low-to-moderate income state residents who file for Earned Income Tax Credits. Payments amount to $750 per family or $450 for individuals, and are broken up in two installments.

These are the bills the Governor plans to sign Tuesday.