|PRIORITY||SUMMARY||STATUS||HOW TO HELP|
Unemployment Insurance Modernization - Alternative Base Period
In Maryland, a worker's most recent earnings are not taken into account when determining unemployment insurance eligibility and benefits. This is especially damaging in times of recession when so many residents have been laid off, desperately need assistance and are denied solely because the state ignores recent data. By adopting the alternative base period and including workers most recent earnings, more Marylanders will qualify for benefits.
SB 107 passed the Senate unanimously and is awaiting second reader on the House floor.
HB 91 was heard on 1/28/10 in Economic Matters. Awaiting committee vote.
Read JOTF's press release on the UI compromise.
Read JOTF's testimony and fact sheet on unemployment insurance modernization.
Read JOTF's report: Unemployment Insurance: Rescuing Maryland Workers and Buoying Local Business
Persons on parole in Maryland are billed $40 per month for their supervision. The fee is largely uncollectible since most parolees are in dire financial situations. The imposition of the fee is out of line with Maryland's committment toward policies that protect the public by promoting successful reentry of parolees. The proposed legislation would transfer the authority to grant fee exepemtions from the Parole Commission to the Department of Parole and Probation.
SB 499 was heard on 3/2/10 in Judicial Proceedings. Awaiting committee vote.
HB 1222 was heard on 3/16/10 in Judiciary. Awaiting committee vote.
Contact Melissa Broome at 410-234-8046 if you know someone who has been affected by this issue.
Read JOTF's fact sheet on parole fees.
Read the Brennan Center for Justice report: Maryland's Parole Supervision Fee: A Barrier to Reentry
|Credit Checks - Limiting Use by Employers|
|About 43% of employers use credit history checks as a tool in their pre-employment screening, even if the information has no relation to the job. In these trying economic times, many Marylanders are experiencing financial hardship, which negatively impacts their credit. The proposed legislation would limit employers' use of credit checks in hiring. ||HB 175 was heard on 2/18/10 in Economic Matters. Awaiting committee vote. |
SB 312 was heard on 2/25/10 in Finance. Awaiting committee vote.
|THIS BILL IS AWAITING COMMITTEE VOTE: Contact members of the Economic Matters and Finance committees to urge their support of HB 175 / SB 312. Click here for a sample e-mail that you may personalize to your liking.|
Baltimore Sun Article
Read JOTF's fact sheet on credit checks.
|Ban the Box |
|The State of Maryland should encourage all qualified applicants, including those with a prior criminal conviction history, to apply for State employment. The proposed legislation would remove the question from state job applications that asks applicants to check a box if they have ever been convicted a crime. Removing the question from the application simply allows applicants to get a foot in the door and prove their qualifications rather than be automatically dismissed because of a box they checked at the beginning of the process. ||SB 581 was heard 2/25/10 in Finance. Awaiting committee vote.|
HB 749 was heard 2/23/10 in Appropriations. Awaiting committee vote.
|Contact members of the House Appropriations and Senate Finance committees to urge their support of HB 749 / SB 581. Click here for a sample e-mail that you may personalize to your liking.|
Read JOTF's fact sheet on banning the box.
Watch a brief PastForward video that highlights the issue.
|DLLR Budget - Workforce Development - Proposed Cuts to Youth Programs||JOTF supports the work of the Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation as a means to increase access to much-needed adult education, job training and unemployment services to low-income Marylanders, particularly young residents between the ages of 16 and 24. As of 2006, more than 1 in 10 young Marylanders were both out-of-school and out-of-work. Without aggressive intervention, many of these disconnected youth run the risk of falling through the cracks and relying on public safety nets to make ends meet. ||DLLR's Workforce Development budget was heard on 2/4/10 in Appropriations and on 2/15/10 in Budget and Tax.|
Cuts were proposed to the summer youth employment program and to general fund grants aimed at urban youth employment.
|Contact members of the Appropriations Subcommittee on Education and Economic Development and the Budget and Tax Subcommittee on Public Safety, Transportation and Environment and urge them to resist cuts to youth employment programs.|
Read JOTF's Issue Brief: A Young Workforce at Risk: Reconnecting Out-of-School and Out-of-Work Youth in Maryland