As session has commenced, Governor Moore’s initiatives were recently introduced in legislative form on the House floor. Speaker Adrienne Jones has sponsored a package of bills, including the Service Year Option Program to promote community service, the Family Prosperity Act to extend the enhanced Earned Income Tax Credit (ETIC), the Access to Banking Act to encourage banking institutions to better serve low-income areas, the Fair Wage Act to raise minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2025 and the Broadband Expansion Incentive Act for tax credits for purchasing internet equipment.
- New legislation would establish the Service Year Option Program under the newly formed Department of Service and Civic Innovation. The program would require a participant to work 30 hours per week, at $15 per hour, and partner with an on-site mentor while working in a service placement in the year after graduating from high school.
- The Family Prosperity Act of 2023 will permanently extend the enhanced Earned Income Tax Credit. Governor Moore believes that this will make nearly 40,000 families eligible for the earned income tax credit and help the state make great strides toward reducing the number of children living in poverty.
- The Maryland Community Investment Venture Fund or the Access to Banking Act will encourage banking institutions and credit unions to create programs to better serve the needs of low-to moderate-income tracts. It also provides for certain assessment offset credits for banking institutions and credit unions that establish branches in lower socio-economic areas.
- The Fair Wage Act of 2023, if enacted, will raise the minimum wage in the state of Maryland to $15 an hour prior to the current target year of 2025. The current minimum wage is $13.25 per hour effective January 1, 2023.
- In an effort to provide internet services for all Marylanders, the Broadband Expansion Incentive Act of 2023 was introduced by the House. It will create a tax credit under the Maryland income tax for taxpayers who purchase network equipment that is used to provide internet service 7 or deploy broadband.
These initiatives are in the early stages of framework and will need to go through the legislative process before becoming state law. As these bills are being discussed throughout the next 60+ days, follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram, and check our blog for updates.
Read Governor Moore’s State of the State Address
Maryland Matters: Moore’s first bills seek to fulfill campaign promises