NFIB urges legislators to follow Hogan’s example.
Gov. Hogan Seeks Mandate Relief for Maryland
Gov. Hogan spent his first year in office delivering on campaign promises given to the small business community, such as eliminating the rain tax and decreasing the tolls on the Bay Bridge. And now, with the 2016 legislative session under way, he has proposed more changes that will help small businesses.
In addition to asking the General Assembly to grant modest tax cuts—totaling $400 million and taking effect over five years—for working families, small businesses and retirees, Gov. Hogan also put out a call for “mandate relief,” reports the Baltimore Sun.
Currently, state law requires automatic, statutory spending increases in the state’s budget each year on education, healthcare and public safety. Gov. Hogan’s proposed legislation would halt these spending hikes when revenue is projected to increase less than 2 percent from the previous year, and it would also require the legislature to decrease existing spending mandates before creating any new ones. The bill would exempt the state’s funding for K-12 education, debt payments, the state employee pension program and the reserve fund, however.
Reining in spending mandates in accordance with state revenue will go a long way toward avoiding unsustainable spending patterns and debt, but the proposal will face opposition in the legislature. NFIB urges lawmakers to follow Gov. Hogan’s lead to continue improving upon the state’s economic climate.