ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The Latest on developments on the last day of the Maryland General Assembly’s legislative session:
Maryland’s legislative session has ended.
Lawmakers adjourned at midnight Monday before the House could pass a bill to increase the number of licenses for growers of medical marijuana. The House and Senate had differences between the number of licenses to add to the 15 now allowed under the law.
The House had sought to increase the licenses by five, to boost minority-owned businesses after a disparity study. The Senate had pushed for seven more licenses, to help settle lawsuits filed by two companies that were bumped out of the top 15 chosen by a state commission to be finalists.
Meanwhile, lawmakers passed Gov. Larry Hogan’s bill to provide tax incentives to manufacturers that bring jobs to parts of the state that need them most, including western Maryland, the Lower Eastern Shore and the city of Baltimore.
A comprehensive package of measures to try to address opioid drug overdoses has been passed by the Maryland General Assembly.
Lawmakers gave final approval to the legislation Monday night.
One bill, which is called the HOPE Act, requires hospitals to set a new protocol for discharging patients treated for substance abuse disorders. It also increases access to the overdose-reversal drug known as naloxone. The bill also provides added funding for community behavioral health providers.
A separate bill is called the Start Talking Maryland Act. It requires education programs in schools on opioid addiction.
Maryland would become the second state in the nation to prohibit routine antibiotic use in livestock, under a bill that has passed the General Assembly.
Lawmakers approved the bill Monday night in the waning hours of the legislative session. That sends the bill to Gov. Larry Hogan.
The measure was passed in response to increasing concern within the public health community about antibiotic resistance.
California passed a bill in 2015 restricting antibiotic use on farm animals in 2015.
The Maryland General Assembly has approved limits on school testing.
The legislature on Monday passed a bill that limits mandated testing to 2.2 percent of the school year. That would be about 24 hours in elementary and middle schools. It would be about 26 hours in high schools, except for eighth grade, which would be limited to about 25 hours.
The measure now goes to Gov. Larry Hogan.
The bill passed unanimously in both houses of the legislature.
Maryland lawmakers are putting the finishing touches on a legislative session that has been full of measures aimed at countering President Donald Trump and the GOP-led Congress.
The Democrat-led legislature, which adjourns at midnight Monday, has passed legislation aimed at protecting health care from cuts in Washington.
It also has empowered the attorney general to sue the federal government without the governor’s permission. And the attorney general will get an extra $1 million a year in future budgets to help pay expenses to do that.
The Maryland General Assembly also approved a blueprint for identifying and assisting troubled public schools that blocks public school privatization supported by U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos. To do that, the legislature overrode a veto from Republican Gov. Larry Hogan last week.
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