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MMC Call To Action  
For Democracy to Work, You Need to Participate

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Serving Veterans through Legislative Advocacy

 
 

Call to Legislative Action

 

Dear MMC Member (and Friends of MMC),

Military retired pay tax reduction is one of our top goals. This week we heard passionate testimony about Gov. Hogan's plan for eliminating income tax for persons over 65, receiving Social Security and are not working full time. While this is a good bill, the estimated cost of $200M in 2023 grows to almost $1B in 2027, making it unlikely to pass. Instead, Sen. Jackson's companion to Del. Roger's bill, SB 103, seems a better bet.

We need your help to keep the Budget and Taxation Committee's attention focused on getting as least ONE of this year's bills out of Committee and to a full Senate vote. Let's see if we can hit a total of 750 letters on these two bills.To this we need EVERYONE to participate!

Follow these steps.

  1. Determine your representatives. Use this link; click on lookup and type in your address. RECORD THIS INFO...you'll continue to need this. Let your Organization's Director know so we can better target emails in the future.
  2. Cut and paste the email template below into your email.
  3. Insert the needed info at the [XXX- ] and feel free to modify the email as needed.
  4. Send a separate email to Senator Elfreth and the representatives on the Pensions Sub-committee. Use the emails below. Bonus points if you send letters to ALL of the Senators on the full committee AND the Senator from your district.
  5. Copy MDMilCoalition@gmail.com (I'll be recording the number of letters by organization).

Pensions Sub-Committee
 

 Senator Sarah Elfreth

 D-30 (Anne Arundel)

 sarah.elfreth@senate.state.md.us

 Senator Paul Corderman

 D-2 (Washington)

 paul.corderman@senate.state.md.us

 Senator Adelaide Eckardt

 D-37 (Caroline, Dorchester, Talbot & Wilcomico

 adelaide.eckardt@senate.state.md.us

 Senator Melony Griffith

 D-25 (Prince George’s)

 melony.griffith@senate.state.md.us

 Senator Michael Jackson

 D-27 (P.G., Charles & Calvert)

 michael.jackson@senate.state.md.us

 Senator Cory McCray

 D-45 (Baltimore City)

 cory.mccray@senate.state.md.us

 
Bonus Points: Full Budget and Taxation Committee
 

 Senator Guy Guzzone

 D-13 (Howard)

 guy.guzzone@senate.state.md.us

 Senator George Edwards

 D-1 (Garrett, Allegany & Washington)

 george.edwards@senate.state.md.us

 Senator Nancy King

 D-39 (Montgomery)

 nancy.king@senate.state.md.us

 Senator Johnny Ray Salling

 D-6 (Baltimore County)

 johnnyray.salling@senate.state.md.us

 Senator Ron Young

 D-3 (Frederick)

 ronald.young@senate.state.md.us

 Senator Craig Zucker

 D-14 (Montgomery)

 craig.zucker@senate.state.md.us

 



Subject Line - SB 130 - Request a Favorable Report

Dear Senator [XXXX]

I am writing as a member of [YOUR VET ORG], a member of the Maryland Military Coalition to urge your support for SB 130, Income Tax Subtraction Modification - Military and Public Safety Retirement Income. SB 130 would increase the existing income tax subtraction for qualifying individuals from the current $15,000 to $20,000.

SB 130 is an important step towards fully exempting our state's tax on Uniformed Services Retired Pay as a majority of states have done either fully (35 states) or partially (9 states, including Maryland). It's time to move forward on making Maryland more retirement friendly, especially for service members who leave Active Duty while stationed here. As you heard during this week's testimony, t's an issue that's vital to our state's economy -- especially its defense and cyber industries and Maryland governmental agencies who desperately need qualified candidates to fill their vacancies.

The Maryland Military Coalition is a non-profit, non-partisan organization of 19 military and veterans groups collectively representing approximately 150,000 Maryland veterans, currently serving, uniformed services retirees, their families and survivors.
 
Please do all you can to ensure a FAVORABLE report in Committee and the full House of Delegates on SB 130.

Thank you for your continued support of currently serving Service Members, Veterans, their families, caregivers and survivors.

Rank, Name, Service, Status
Address
(District XX)

 


These emails only take a few minutes, but they can REALLY make a difference.

Again, I appreciate all that you do.

Bob Norton
President

 

Legislative Updates

 

As we close Week Seven, I am pleased to announce that HB 167, "Commission to Establish a Maryland Women Veterans Memorial", was the first of our bills to pass a chamber (130-0). Last year it never made it out of Committee. This week HB 237/ SB 365 "State Government - Maryland Veterans Commission - Membership" passed BOTH chambers, giving ROA a seat on the State Veterans Commission. Congratulations Jay and team on getting this through!

We have a new bill of interest. HB 1251, "Department of Veterans Affairs - Burial in State Veterans Cemeteries - Spouses and Dependents", which eliminates the $828 cost for opening/closing the grave. We have already heard from some of you who are interested in this bill.

Our team has been actively testifying:

Week Six

  • HB 461 (Delegate Rogers). $20K retired pay 'subtraction': Dave Peterson (MOAA/MOCO), Dave Dragics (MOAA/Ft. Meade), Cheryl Glang (NOAA Corps Spouses), Tom Jurkowsky (MOAA) and yours truly for the MMC.
  • HB 597 (Delegate Mangione). Raises the subtraction to $30K and lowers age for receipt to 50. Pat Guibao (FRA) and me for (MMC).
  • HB 617 Property Tax Credit for Fallen Service Member Spouse. Lynn Nash (MMC).
  • HB 497 Vehicle Excise Tax - Active Duty. Lynn Nash (MMC).
  • HB 008 Family & Medical Leave (incl. spouses of AD serving in MD). Yours truly (MMC).

This week

  • HB 420 / SB 405 (Gov. Hogan's bills), phasing out state tax on retirement income for ALL citizens >65, receiving Social Security and not employed full time. (House: Written - me, Dave Peterson & Dave Dragics; Senate: John May (MMC), Dave Dragics (MOAA/Ft. Meade) and Pat Guibao (FRA)
  • SB 103 Companion to HB 461 above Lynn, Cheryl Glang, Tom Jurkowsky and Pat Guibao

The MMC is now following 53 bills.To date, we have generated 286 letters of support and we hope that in coming weeks, we'll see more tracker blocks turning to green. Delegates have until March 7th to submit new legislation without the suspension of rules. We are now halfway through the session and three weeks away from "crossover", when each Chamber has to send those bills it intends to pass favorably to the other side. With so many retired pay bills under consideration, things could get interesting. Stay tuned.

 
 

Save the Date

 

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The Maryland Military Coalition is a registered non-profit, non-partisan advocacy organization, comprised of prominent Maryland-based veteran and military groups, that seeks to protect and enhance the well-being of the uniformed services community -- including currently serving, veterans, retirees and their families and survivors -- by raising awareness and advancing legislative proposals and policies before the Maryland General Assembly and the Office of the Governor.

 

 

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Copyright © 2021 Maryland Military Coalition All rights reserved.
www.MarylandMilitaryCoalition.org
President, Bob Norton





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