Maryland Legislature To Make It Even More Difficult For Businesses Within The State

If you own or operate a business in the state of Maryland you need to pay very close attention to what is going on in Annapolis now that the Executive, Legislative, and Judicial branches of our state government are controlled exclusively by one party.

If it isn’t Governor Martin O’Money himself pushing higher taxes and anti-business bills through in special sessions or behind closed doors its the legislators slamming these things through the house with little to no scrutiny, analysis or debate on how they will hurt small business people.

If you are a businessperson you need to visit the Maryland Chamber of Commerce website or blog at the very least once a week to learn what these shiftless and shameful, witless and wanton, fools that have never created one real job or made a payroll are doing that will hurt your business. Below I have inserted an excerpt from the Chamber Blog that cover three very important issues everyone of us business people need to keep an eye on:

February 21, 2008
Prevailing Wage Bill is a Bad Idea
Maryland Chamber Vice President of Government Affairs Ron Wineholt testified last week in opposition to HB 970 – Procurement – Prevailing Wage. This legislation would require contractors working on state or local public works projects that cost more than $500,000 and use any state funds to pay a state-determined wage level to their employees.

Current law applies this prevailing wage to projects funded with at least 50 percent state funds. This bill would make the prevailing wage applicable on projects that use any state funds.

Studies by the Department of Legislative Services in 1989 and 1995 determined that the prevailing wage law inflated the cost of public works projects by 5 to 15 percent. “The prevailing wage law undermines the competitive bidding process by requiring projects using state funds to pay a higher labor price than would be required through market based competitive bidding,” Wineholt said. “At a time when Maryland needs to build more schools, this bill will cause us to build less.”

For more information, contact Ron Wineholt at rwineholt@mdchamber.org.

February 20, 2008
Attention Business Property Owners
Legislation (SB 561/HB 676) has been introduced that would authorize counties to specify the classes of property that are subject to real and personal property taxation and to vary the rates of taxation among the classes. Defeating this legislation is a priority for the Maryland Chamber.

State law has long established the classes of property subject to county property taxation and required that counties impose one rate of tax that is applicable to all real property.

“If counties are authorized to set their own classes of property taxation and to vary tax rates among those classes, they will use that authority to push additional tax burden toward business property and engage in further tax discrimination against businesses,” Maryland Chamber Vice President of Government Affairs Ron Wineholt said.

Significant real property tax burden is already shifted to businesses as a result of the real property homestead tax credit for residences and the business personal property tax rate that is 2.5 times the real property tax rate.

HB 676 will be heard by the House Ways & Means Committee on February 28. No Senate hearing has been scheduled yet. For more information, contact Ron Wineholt at rwineholt@mdchamber.org.

February 19, 2008
MD Chamber Opposes Unrealistic Global Warming Bill
The Maryland Chamber of Commerce testified today before the Senate Education Health and Environmental Affairs Committee in opposition to SB 309 – Global Warming Solutions – Reductions in Greenhouse Gases.

This bill would require Maryland to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 25 percent by 2020, and 90 percent by 2050 – the strongest mandate in the country. Passage would require Marylanders and Maryland businesses to make major changes in their daily lives and operations by driving 1/3 less and consuming 1/3 less electricity.

Maryland’s man-made GHG emissions comprise approximately 1.5% of the United States’ emissions and a very small percentage of the world’s total emissions. Since GHG emissions disperse globally and Maryland’s emissions are a very small percentage of the total global problem, this issue needs to be addressed on a national level in concert with international efforts.

“It is impossible for a small state, such as Maryland, to achieve a reduction goal as large as the 25 percent by 2020, and 90 percent by 2050,” said Maryland Chamber Vice President of Government Affairs Allyson Black. “This legislation is counterproductive, and would make it extremely difficult for businesses to survive.”

A number of Maryland Chamber members testified in opposition to SB 309 today, including Maryland Industrial Technology Alliance, Maryland Petroleum Council, Redland Brick, Inc., NewPage, Allegheny Energy, Mirant Mid-Atlantic, Constellation Energy and ArcelorMittall.

For more information, contact Allyson Black at ablack@mdchamber.org.

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Posted by Will Burns at 4:52 PM to Environment & Energy | Permalink | Comments (0)
February 18, 2008
February 27 – Save Maryland IT Day

Join us in Annapolis on February 27 for Save Maryland IT Day, a media event and lobbying day to advocate the repeal of the computer services sales tax.

This tax will stifle economic development and job creation in Maryland. Whether your company is a user or provider of IT services, this tax will have a negative impact on your competitiveness. Unless repealed, the 6 percent computer services sales tax will take effect on July 1. We need you in Annapolis on February 27 to tell your story to the media and to lawmakers.

The event will begin at 10:30 a.m. at the Maryland Inn on Church Circle in Annapolis. We will hold a media briefing featuring a number of CEOs at 11 a.m. We’ll also hear from some legislators who support the repeal of the tech tax at 11:30 a.m. Following the briefing, we will walk over to the House and Senate office buildings to urge lawmakers to repeal the tax.

The event is being held in partnership with the Tech Council of Maryland, the Fight the Tech Tax Coalition Partners and the Maryland Computer Services Association.

For more information, or to RSVP, contact me at wburns@mdchamber.org.

Posted by Will Burns at 9:59 AM to Budget & Taxation | Permalink | Comments (0)
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Prevailing Wage Bill is a Bad Idea
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