Category Archives: Legislative – State Blog

2017 Efforts to Increase Grassroots Support for Increased Tax Exemption for Seniors

From: Paul Schwartz, State Legislation Committee Chair

Last year Governor Hogan proposed increasing the tax exemption for seniors over the age of 65 from $1,000 to $5,000 over a 4-year period. The loss of revenue was covered in the Governor’s budget.

There was significant support for the proposal, but for a variety of reasons the bill was not adopted. The SLC has been and will continue to lobby for this bill in the upcoming 2017 legislative session. We have met with the Governor’s staff and key legislators. We are hopeful that this bill will again be part of the Governor’s program to help seniors.

By utilizing funds contributed to the MD-PAC we will continue attending fundraisers, which provide us with access to key legislators who we hope we can convince to support bills that provide relief to seniors and thus help the entire Maryland economy.

Based upon conversations with legislators and others in the political arena, we have come to the realization that one aspect of our lobbying that is failing is our ability to convince legislators that these goals are important to our membership and that our membership will consider the actions of their legislators on these bills when they go to vote (and remember our members do go out and vote). A first major step in ensuring that our membership is active is to educate them so that they are aware of what their legislators are doing in Annapolis. To accomplish this we will provide information on a monthly basis for inclusion in each Chapter’s Newsletter.

The following actions are required to accomplish this:

  1. All Chapters need to ensure that their Newsletter is sent to all of the legislative representatives that are appropriate to the legislative districts that cover their membership.
  2. The State Legislative Committee will on a monthly basis provide an article for the chapters newsletter that tells them what we have done, who we have seen, who is supporting us, and who is not. We will also provide suggestions as appropriate for any particular chapter based upon that chapter’s legislators. These articles should be published in the chapter newsletter.
  3. We also encourage local chapters to take action to meet with their legislators and report to the SLC any progress or concerns they may have.
  4. Each Chapter President should immediately notify the SLC who in their chapter will be responsible for this activity and provide an e-mail address for that individual.

Together we can accomplish our goals. Thank you for your support and cooperation.

MD Federation State Legislative Committee Members’ Roles

The principal responsibility of our state federation is to support NARFE’s
mission.  To do that we have a State Legislative Committee (SLC)
comprised of 14 chapter members.  The SLC role is to persuade the
Governor, his staff, the Senate and House of Delegates to take legislative
actions that will support the mission of NARFE.

Success in supporting NARFE’s mission depends heavily on convincing
legislative decision makers that SLC staff members who meet with them do
indeed represent the interests, needs and requirements of their constituents.

To accomplish this, the SLC depends on input and participation by chapter
members.  We need NARFE members to make their wishes known through
communication with their elected representatives by phone, mail, e-mail,
individual meetings and attendance at legislative hearings.

Our immediate goals are:

1       To support state legislation beneficial to current and potential federal
annuitants and to oppose legislation contrary to our interests.  (This
concerns about 300,000 current Maryland resident federal employees and
retirees as well as other senior Maryland residents who are likely to benefit
from such actions on our part.);

2           To promote the general welfare of current and potential federal
annuitant residents recognizing our need for adequate income and services
to maintain their quality of life in Maryland; and

3           To establish the recognition by members of Maryland’s General
Assembly that NARFE members include a large number of highly
experienced individuals in areas of state responsibility and need to be
viewed as resources for Maryland.

The SLC will undertake needed actions to keep our members informed of
relevant legislation being proposed, analyses of it, dates of legislative
hearings and activities underway involving such legislation.  SLC will provide
updated information to the chapters for inclusion in chapter newsletters and
keep chapter legislative officers informed on a weekly basis or more during
the state’s legislative session, which runs from the second week in January
through mid-April.

Updated Survey Results and Questions Provided by SLC Chair Ed Bice

TO: Executive Committee, Federation Committee Chairs, Chapter Presidents, SLC Committee Members and Chapter Legislative Points of Contact

FROM: State Legislative Chair Ed Bice

Comments from Ed Bice:

The survey results should be shared with your members before the primary date of June 24 as the candidates were informed that the results of the survey would be shared with their constituents. The results can be shared by email, chapter newsletters, and/or at chapter meetings. Results of the survey can be used as a guide for member voting.

You may click here to view the survey as a PDF file.

Also, here is the survey for legislators so you may read the three questions posed to each. If the cell is blank on the survey it is because that legislator or gubernatorial candidate did not send a response. Blank indicates no response.

Maryland Governor Candidates’ Forum – May 16, 2014

You’re Invited!
Maryland Governor Candidates’ Forum
Friday, May 16, 2014
7:00 to 9:00 p.m.

All Candidates for Maryland Governor invited
Frederick Hilton Garden Inn
7226 Corporate Court, Frederick, MD 21703
Free and Open to the Public

Sponsored by:

  • Business & Professional Women of Maryland
  • Business & Frederick Community College (FCC)
  • American Association of University Women (AAUW)
  • Maryland Legislative Agenda for Women (MLAW)
  • Francis Scott Key Lions Club
  • Maryland Federation of National Active and Retired Federal Employees
  • Business & Professional Women’s Foundation of Maryland

For additional information and sponsorship opportunities, please contact or Conference Chairman Theresa Foster @ 410-591-8970 or