Sen. Bryan Simonaire has withdrawn a proposal to require jurisdictions charging stormwater fees to also offer a tax credit for sunshine.
Simonaire, R-Pasadena, proposed the "Sunshine Tax Credit Act" last year when he rolled out his "anti-rain tax legislative package."
Simonaire claimed in a release then that the "Sunshine Tax Credit Act" would have credited residents for "a lack of rain and how much sunshine evaporates any existing rain on the ground, thus providing less runoff."
But in reality, the bill didn't include language about how much sun shined on property.
As written, the legislation would have "required counties and municipalities to grant a property tax credit against the county or municipal property tax in order to offset in whole or in part the applicable stormwater remediation fee," according to a fiscal note provided by the Department of Legislative Services.
Simonaire admitted when he first announced the proposal that there was a "little tongue-in-cheek built within the legislation."
But by modeling the Sunshine Tax Credit Act on the 2012 legislation, Simonaire said he seriously hoped it spurred a conversation in the legislature that could lead to a repeal of the stormwater fee law.
Most attempts to repeal or weaken the stormwater fee mandate have already failed in the General Assembly this year.
Deer hunting on Sundays
A proposal to allow deer hunting on some Sundays in Anne Arundel County has been killed by a Senate Committee.
The Senate Education, Health and Environmental Affairs Committee split a vote that would have moved Senate Bill 191 forward, 5-5-1.
Without a majority, the proposal led by Sen. Ed Reilly, R-Crofton, was given an unfavorable report.
All Anne Arundel County senators voted for the bill. Reilly, Simonaire and Jim Rosapepe, D-College Park, voted for the proposal to move forward. But five Democrats, including committee chair Joan Carter Conway, D-Baltimore City, voted against the measure.
Similar legislation still survives in the House of Delegates. But House Bill 197, introduced by Del. Bob Costa, R-Deale, will need to get an OK from the House Environmental Matters Committee and make it to a final vote in the House before the General Assembly's crossover deadline at the close of business Monday.
For legislation to stand any real chance, it must clear either the House or Senate by the crossover deadline.
The original legislation would have led to hunting from the first Sunday in October through the second Sunday of January - some 15 Sundays considered to be best time of the year for trail and hunt riding. But after a House delegation meeting, that number of Sundays was cut down to just two Sundays.
Proponents of the proposal say allowing Sunday hunting would help cull the growing population of white-tailed deer in Anne Arundel, who damage crops and are often hit by cars.
Leaders of the county and state horse industry have been fighting the proposed legislation to hold on to what they call "safe Sundays."