With the 2019 Maryland General Assembly session already under way, members of the Montgomery County delegation received their committee assignments on Wednesday.
“I am honored; I got the first choice of the committee that I was hoping to serve on,” said freshman Del. Jared Soloman (D-District 18). “I’m just excited to dig into every piece of the state budget and really make sure that we’re putting dollars where our priorities are.”
Although members of the county delegation serve on all the committees in both the House of Delegates and State Senate, Sen. Nancy King (D-District 39) will hold the chairmanship of the Senate Budget and Taxation Committee, while Sens. Will Smith (D-District 20), Brian Feldman (D-District 15) and Craig Zucker (D-District 14) will hold vice-chairmanships of the Judicial Proceedings, Finance and Rules Committees, respectively.
On the House side, Del. Kumar Barve (D-District 17) holds the House Environment and Transportation Committee chairmanship, while Del. Anne Kaiser (D-District 14) will lead the Ways and Means Committee.
Most of the subcommittee assignments are yet to be finalized.
“I think it’s a great new team,” said Sen. Susan Lee (D-District 16), who also serves as the Majority Whip in the chamber. “We’re going to try to do the best we can in the 90-day session.”
The Senate has six standing committees, which are: Budget and Taxation; Education, Health, and Environmental Affairs; Executive Nominations; Finance; Judicial Proceedings; and Rules. There is also one special committee on drug abuse and 11 select committees corresponding to the county delegations.
Zucker, who will also serve as the deputy majority leader, joins King on both the Rules and Budget and Taxation committees as her only delegation colleague, while the Education, Health, and Environmental Affairs committee includes Sen. Cheryl Kagan (D-District 17), as the only full committee member from the county.
Smith and King also join Feldman on the Executive Nominations Committee, while newly elected Sen. Ben Kramer (D-District 19) joins the Finance committee.
Smith will serve alongside Lee and freshman Sen. Jeff Waldstreicher (D-District 18) on Judicial Proceedings.
Similarly, the House has seven standing committees, which are: Appropriations; Economic Matters; Environment and Transportation; Health and Government Operations; Rules and Executive Nominations; Judiciary; and Ways and Means. The House special committees include the Regional Revitalization Work Group and Special Committee on Drug and Alcohol Abuse, along with 27 select committees for each of the county delegations.
“We’ve had a lot of changes to a lot of committees,” said Del. David Moon (D-District 20). “There’s a bit of feeling out of the new colleagues.”
Dels. Gabe Acevero (D-District 39), Kirill Reznik (D-District 39) and Marc Korman (D-District 16) all join Soloman on the Appropriations Committee, while Dels. Lorig Charkoudian (D-District 20), Kathleen Dumais (D-District 15), Lily Qi (D-District 15) and Pam Queen (D-District 14) will serve on the Economic Matters Committee.
Dumais will also serve as the Majority Leader.
Dels. David Fraser-Hidalgo (D-District 15), Jim Gilchrist (D-District 17), Sara Love (D-District 16) and Vaughn Stewart (D-District 19) all join Barve on the House Environment and Transportation Committee.
Dels. Al Carr (D-District 18), Ariana Kelly (D-District 16) and Bonnie Cullison (D-District 19) serve on the Health and Government Operations Committee while Barve, Dumais, Kaiser and Reznik serve on the Rules and Executive Nominations Committee.
Freshman delegates Charlotte Crutchfield (D-District 19), Lesley Lopez (D-District 39) and Emily Shetty (D-District 18) all join Moon on the Judiciary Committee.
Chairing the Ways and Means committee, Kaiser will serve alongside Dels. Eric Luedtke (D-District 14), Julie Palakovich Carr (D-District 17) and Jheanelle Wilkins (D-District 20).
King and Korman will chair the county delegations in the Senate and House, respectively.
The Maryland General Assembly also includes 17 statutory committees, two joint committees and 11 other committees not included in the other categories.
The session ends April 8.