Following is a brief analysis of Delegate Mary Ann Lisanti’s bills since she has been a State Delegate. For clarification, if a bill goes to a rules committee, that means it was introduced passed the filing deadline and special consideration of it has to be given before it is assigned to a committee and thus, a hearing. Bond bills create a state debt that legislators request in order to finance projects in their district. Once a bill passes the third reader on the house floor it then proceeds to the senate for equal consideration. The bill in its final form (amended or not) has to be accepted by both houses before it is considered returned passed or passed enrolled, and available for the Governor’s signature. Finally, being the primary sponsor of a bill means that it is initiated by that elected official and he or she is considered the lead legislator taking up the cause to introduce the bill, speak about the bill at the committee hearing, accept amendments to the bill if necessary and overall, generally oversee it’s successful passage. When a bill becomes law it is given a Chapter number.
Up until Delegate Lisanti’s censure, she sat on the House Economic Matters Committee and was a member of two subcommittees: Alcoholic Beverages and Business Regulation. Additionally, while not condition of the censure, she is now the former Chair of the Unemployment Insurance Subcommittee and former House Chair of the Joint Committee of Unemployment Insurance Oversight. In addition, she no longer serves on the Regional Revitalization Work Group and on the Joint Committee on Workers’ Compensation Benefit and Insurance Oversight Committee.
Delegate Mary Ann Lisanti is a Democrat and she also serves as the Executive Director of the non-profit, Lower Susquehanna Heritage Greenway, Inc. since 2002.
In 2015 during Delegate Lisanti’s first year in State office, she was the primary sponsor of 7 bills. One bill became law, HB 884. Election Law – Counting of Properly Cast Ballots, as Chapter 463. Out of the remaining 6 bills, 2 of them were bond bills that received no funding. Out of the other four bills, 2 of them received an unfavorable report, 1 didn’t receive any additional consideration after the house bill hearing and 1 proceeded to the senate but no action was taken to vote it out of committee.
During Delegate Lisanti’s second year in office, she was the primary sponsor of 16 bills of which three became law:
- House Bill 852 (Chapter 280) Local Government – Municipal Elections – Tie Votes
- House Bill 854 (Chapter 281) State Highway Administration – Relocation of Water or Sewer Lines – Cost Sharing
- House Bill 1161 (Chapter 135) Municipalities – Boat Docking and Storage – User Fees – Authorized Uses
Of the remaining 13 bills, 3 were stuck in the Rules and Executive Nominations Committee, 1 became stalled in the Senate Rules Committee, 4 received an unfavorable report, 2 bills did not receive a committee vote after the hearing and 1 bill was referred to interim study. With the 2 bills left, they both made it out of the house but the senate made no action on the bill after the hearing. And, there was one bond bill that wasn’t funded.
In 2017 Delegate Lisanti was the primary sponsor of 22 bills. Now with one half of her first term complete, Delegate Lisanti was able to turn 3 of her bills into law.
- House Bill 3 (Chapter 501) Income Tax – Subtraction Modification – Olympic, Paralympic, Special Olympic, and Deaflympic Games Medals and Prizes
- House Bill 951 (Chapter 711) State Highway Administration – Alfred B. Hilton Memorial Bridge – Dedication
- House Bill 1386 (Chapter 519) Maryland Public Ethics Law – Members and Employees of Boards of License Commissioners and Liquor Control Boards
Of the remaining 19 bills 10 didn’t proceed beyond the first hearing, of which 7 of them were due to an unfavorable report, including her three bond bills. Additionally, 5 pieces of legislation didn’t make it out of the Rules and Executive Nominations Committees. The remaining 4 bills did proceed to the senate but went no further.
During the last year of her first term in 2018 Delegate Lisanti sponsored 25 primary bills of which 4 were bond bills that failed with an unfavorable vote and 10 bills became law:
- House Bill 270 (Chapter 284) Alcoholic Beverages – Brewing Company Off-Site Permits and Winery Off-Site Permits – Harford County Farm Fair
- House Bill 327 (Chapter 572) Income Tax – Subtraction Modification – Military Retirement Income
- House Bill 615 (Chapter 285) Municipalities – Charter Amendments – Procedures
- House Bill 972 (Chapter 542) Alcoholic Beverages – Class 4 Limited Winery Licenses
- House Bill 1126 (Chapter 283) Public Service Commission – Application for Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity – Criteria to Consider
- House Bill 1469 (Chapter 530) Ethics – Members of Boards of License Commissioners and Liquor Control Boards
- House Bill 1498 (Chapter 137) Harford County – Alcoholic Beverages Licenses – Social Organization
- House Bill 1539 (Chapter 846) Labor and Employment – General Contractor Liability for Unpaid Wages
- House Bill 1542 (Chapter 795) Department of Commerce – Employment in the State’s Defense Industry – Study
- Senate Bill 1140 (Chapter 623) Cross filed bill to her HB 1736 Maryland Agricultural Land Preservation Foundation – Lot Release
Of the remaining 15 bills, 3 were stuck in the House Rules and Executive Nominations Committees and 1 was stalled in the Senate Rules Committee. Of the eleven bills that were left, 8 others received an unfavorable vote and 1 didn’t proceed past the senate.
The 2019 legislative session has been rather difficult for Delegate Lisanti as none of her bills have passed out of the House to the Senate and without the full process of receiving a successful third reader vote, bills cannot proceed to the Governor for signature. Similarly, funding for her bond bills have been minimal. This year Delegate Lisanti was the primary sponsor of 10 bills, just three more than when she first started as a delegate. Half of the bills (5) received an unfavorable report and consequently, three of them were withdrawn. Of the remaining five, 1 bill was referring to an interim study, 1 bill hearing was cancelled, and 1 is stuck in the House Rules and Executive Nominations. For the 2 bills that are left they haven’t been voted out of the house.
Furthermore, regarding bonds, they are not introduced as bills creating state debt anymore. They are introduced as bond initiatives. Of the three bond initiatives she initiated or supported, only 1 received partial funding. The bond initiatives were:
- Edgewood Applied Technology Workforce Development Center (with Delegate Johnson)
- Requested $150,000 – Funded $0.00
- Habitat for Humanity Susquehanna (with Delegates Johnson and McComas and Senator Cassilly)
- Requested $175,000 – Funded $100,000
- Note that the funding is allocated to the Senator’s initiative
- Historic Colored School (with Delegates Johnson and McComas)
- Requested $250,000 – Funded $0.00
In summary, as a 5th year legislator, Delegate Lisanti has introduced 70 bills and roughly 23% of her bills have passed. In terms of funding for projects via bond initiatives or a creation of state debt, she has garnered very little for the district since being a state delegate. If you have kept any of her campaign flyers please share them and let’s verify their accuracy regarding her prowess in bringing money back to Harford County. Upon visiting the Harford County Delegation on Thursday, April 4, 2019 a delegate tried to specify additional funding she brought back to the county this year but he was wrong when referenced to the bond initiatives site. A staff member whispered to me that I was right upon my leaving. She has been a lame duck this legislative session. If you looked at the picture the two absent delegates are Delegate Impallaria to the left and Delegate Lisanti to the right of Delegate Johnson.