Our Strength is in our Numbers... Our Power is in our Unity! 
From the Governor's Office of Small, Minority and Women Business Affairs' Small Biz Bulletin

Small Business Bill Tracker

The Maryland General Assembly will look at over 2,000 pieces of proposed legislation. With only 90 days to get it all done, things in Annapolis are moving at a fast pace. We're watching all legislation that impacts the small business community and we've designated a special page on our website to make it easy for you to follow along. Visit our Bill Tracker often and stay connected to issues that may have a direct impact on your small business. The page includes a link to help you connect with your elected officials.

Small Business Bill Tracker 

Greater Baltimore Black Chamber of Commerce

Proposed Legislative Agenda


Maryland Black Business Legislative Agenda - Coalition information from the initial meeting on July 18, 2017.

Issues to watch

Mandatory Sick Leave HB1

$15 minimum wage on local and state level

Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) on national level

Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI) program on national level

Video Lottery Terminals (VLT) Fund

President’s Tax Reform Bill


The legislative agenda currently deals with 3 topics/buckets of issues.

  1. Access to capital resources - debt and equity funding for black businesses.
  2. Management - Building and Increasing capacity for black businesses using training, technical assistance, business and workforce development.
  3. Markets - Access to private and public markets for opportunities for black businesses
  4. Economic Development in Dis-Invested Black Neighborhoods
Action Steps
  1. Join Greater Baltimore Black Chamber of Commerce
  2. Become an active participant in our Legislative and Government Affairs Committee to help drive the 2018 Legislative Agenda
  3. Communicate with your legislative officials responsible for legislation of interest and/or action needed to move the agenda forward. 
Wall Street Journal Article:
Largest Black Business Organization Will Oppose Tax Bill
Connect with Us on Facebook & Twitter 


Lt. Governor Boyd K. Rutherford, Hogan Administration Tout Legislation to Modernize, Streamline State Procurement System

Legislation Passed This Session Will Ensure Best Value for Maryland Taxpayers

ANNAPOLIS, MD – Lt. Governor Boyd K. Rutherford today highlighted legislation passed during the 2017 Maryland General Assembly legislative session that will modernize and streamline the state's procurement system with standardized best practices, policies, and procedures that are more uniform, transparent, and equitable. Lt. Governor Rutherford was appointed chair of the state's Commission to Modernize State Procurement by Governor Larry Hogan in February 2016. The commission released its final report in December. Recommendations from the commission were enacted into law via three administration bills and three privately sponsored bills, the majority of which were signed by the governor on Thursday, May 25, 2017.

"Creating a more centralized procurement system that ensures the efficient use of resources and produces a more consistent implementation of procurement law, regulation, policy, practice, and procedure is an important part of making state government more transparent and changing Maryland for the better," said Lt. Governor Rutherford. "I would like to thank the legislature for collaborating with our administration on this important issue."

Highlights of the new laws include the consolidation of all non-transportation executive branch procurement into the Department of General Services; raising the Small Business Reserve Program goal and making it applicable to all state agencies; raising the small procurement dollar threshold; repealing the statutory preference for competitive sealed bidding; and refining the conditions upon which an agency can use an intergovernmental cooperative purchasing agreement, among many others. 

The procurement reform legislation signed into law by Governor Hogan include the following administration bills:

    • HB433/SB309: State Finance and Procurement - Small and Minority Business Participation: Signed by Governor Hogan on May 2, 2017, this law increases small and minority business participation in state procurement by making the Small Business Reserve program applicable to all procuring agencies, raises the Small Business Reserve requirement of each agency by 50%, and requires that only 60% of the costs of an MBE's supplies/materials can be applied to achieving an MBE contract goal in order to encourage more meaningful participation of MBEs on state contracts.  
    • HB426/SB311: Promoting Efficiencies in State Procurement: Streamlines the procurement process by raising the small procurement threshold to $50,000 generally and to $100,000 for construction projects, provides procurement officers discretion on which procurement method to use, and authorizes master contracting for control agencies.  
    • HB390/SB310: Improving the State Procurement Oversight Structure: Provides the ability to appeal a contract claim after 180 days of inaction and raises the threshold for disclosure to the Secretary of State's office.  

As well as the following privately sponsored bills supported by the administration:

    • HB1021 (Del. Reznik): Reorganization of State Procurement: Consolidates all non-transportation executive branch procurement into the Department of General Services and creates the Chief Procurement Officer position, who is the head of all procurement activity for the Executive Branch, and requires studying the feasibility of the Office of the Attorney General to represent all state procuring units at the State Board of Contract Appeals. 
    • HB1107 (Del. Rosenberg): Procurement - Intergovernmental Cooperative Purchasing Agreements: Requires a primary procurement unit to make a determination before it initially sponsors, participates in, renews, or modifies an intergovernmental cooperative purchasing agreement and to post the determination on the unit's website. 
    • HB1446 (Del. Hayes): Procurement Preferences - Blind Industries and Services of Maryland - Janitorial Products: Requires prime contractors on a state contract that includes housekeeping or janitorial services to procure janitorial products from Blind Industries and Services of Maryland (BISM) only if the products are made, manufactured, remanufactured, or assembled by BISM and are available.  

Legislative Updates

SB 4

Department of Legislative Services

Maryland General Assembly

2017 Session


First Reader Senate Bill 4

(Chair, Education, Health, and Environmental Affairs Committee)(By Request - Departmental - Office of Minority Affairs)

Education, Health, and Environmental Affairs

 Minority Business Enterprises - Program Participation - Requirements and Reauthorization


This departmental bill extends the termination date of the State’s Minority Business Enterprise (MBE) preference program by one year, to July 1, 2018, and also extends the deadline for the completion of the mandated disparity study by one year, to September 30, 2017. In addition, the bill clarifies the conditions under which a certified MBE may be removed from an executed contract for good cause by a prime contractor. Finally, the bill requires each MBE serving as a subcontractor on an awarded contract to submit a document to both the prime contractor and the procurement officer – within 10 days of notification of the contract award – specifying the percentage and type of work to be completed by the MBE.

The bill takes effect July 1, 2017.

HB 1

Department of Legislative Services

Maryland General Assembly

2017 Session


First Reader House Bill 1

(Delegates Clippinger and Davis)

Economic Matters

 Labor and Employment - Maryland Healthy Working Families Act

 This bill requires an employer with more than 14 employees to have a sick and safe leave policy under which an employee earns at least 1 hour of paid sick and safe leave, at the same rate as the employee normally earns, for every 30 hours an employee works. An employer with 14 or fewer employees, based on the average monthly number of employees during the preceding year, must have a sick and safe leave policy that provides an employee with at least 1 hour of unpaid sick and safe leave for every 30 hours an employee works. An employer is not required to allow an employee to earn or carry over more than 56 hours of earned sick and safe leave in a year, use more than 80 hours of earned leave in a year, accrue more than 80 hours at any time, or use earned sick and safe leave during the first 90 calendar days worked or first 480 hours worked, whichever is shorter.

The bill takes effect January 1, 2018.



(First Reader)

Introduced by: Councilmember Clarke, President Young, Councilmembers Dorsey, Scott,

Burnett, Middleton, Cohen, Sneed, Reisinger, Henry

Introduced and read first time: February 6, 2017

Assigned to: Labor Committee

REFERRED TO THE FOLLOWING AGENCIES: City Solicitor, Department of Human Resources, Wage Commission, Baltimore Development Corporation, Mayor’s Office of Employment

Development, Department of Finance


1 AN ORDINANCE concerning

2 Labor and Employment – City Minimum Wage

3   FOR the purpose of setting Baltimore City’s minimum wage rate for the years 2019 through   


4   setting the formula to determine Baltimore City’s minimum wage rate from 2023 onward;

5   repealing certain exceptions; creating certain exceptions; defining certain terms; setting the

6   terms and qualifications for Wage Commission members; requiring the production and

7   posting of multilingual posters summarizing Baltimore City’s minimum wage laws; setting

8   Baltimore City’s tipped minimum wage rate; setting Baltimore City’s small employer

9   minimum wage through 2026; limiting the withholdings employers may make from


10 wages; allowing any person to make a complaint to the Wage Commission; changing the

11 Wage Commission’s procedures for responding to complaints; repealing the prohibition of

12 bad faith employee complaints to the Wage Commission; establishing certain penalties;

13 clarifying and conforming related provisions; and generally relating to the minimum wage to

14 be paid to employees in Baltimore City.


State Government – Office of Minority Affairs and Interdepartmental Advisory 2 Committee on Minority Affairs – Renaming


 FOR the purpose of renaming the Governor’s Office of Minority Affairs to be the Governor’s 4 Office of Small, Minority, and Women Business Affairs; renaming the Special 5 Secretary for the Office of Minority Affairs to be the Special Secretary for the Office 6 of Small, Minority, and Women Business Affairs; renaming the Interdepartmental 7 Advisory Committee on Minority Affairs to be the Interdepartmental Advisory 8 Committee on Small, Minority, and Women Business Affairs; making conforming 9 changes; requiring the publisher of the Annotated Code of Maryland, in consultation 10 with and subject to the approval of the Department of Legislative Services, to correct 11 any cross–references or terminology rendered incorrect by this Act and to describe 12 any corrections made in an editor’s note following the section affected; and generally 13 relating to the renaming of the Office of Minority Affairs and the Interdepartmental 14 Advisory Committee on Minority Affairs.



Video Lottery Terminals – Small, Minority, and Women–Owned Businesses 2 Account – Transfer of Authority

FOR the purpose of transferring the authority for the administration of the Small, Minority, and Women–Owned Businesses Account from the Board of Public Works to the Department of Commerce; making conforming changes; and generally relating to the authority for the Small, Minority, and Women–Owned Businesses Account.

See Related Bill: SB 999

SB 999, Natalie M. LaPrade Medical Cannabis Commission Reform Act, establishes a Small, Minority, and Women-Owned Medical Cannabis Business Account (the “Account”) to provide equity investments and lending capital to Maryland based small, minority and women-owned businesses including such businesses operating or seeking to operate in the medical cannabis industry.

Amendment offered by Meridian Management Group Inc. (MMG) to model (the “Account”) after the Video Lottery Terminal Fund (the “VLT) requiring a percentage of all revenues from Medical Cannabis sales go into an account to provide financing to Small, Minority and Women-Owned Business Enterprises. 

©2011 - 2017 Greater Baltimore Black Chamber of Commerce. Privacy Policy
Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software