December 10, 2016

Annapolis Advocacy Center

 

MABE's Annapolis Advocacy Program and Services

MABE strives to be the primary voice for public education in Annapolis. Therefore, MABE represents all twenty-four local boards of education and engages the General Assembly through a comprehensive governmental relations and advocacy program. The association adopts resolutions which frame positions and priorities on major policy issues. These resolutions provide the foundation for the legislative positions and priorities adopted annually by the Legislative Committee.

The Legislative Committee, including representatives from all twenty-four boards, holds monthly meetings to guide the association’s lobbying activities in Annapolis, and invites policy and legislative leaders as guest speakers to exchange ideas.

The Director of Governmental Relations, in coordination with MABE leadership, conducts direct lobbying activities including written and oral testimony before the General Assembly. MABE also coordinates the Green Street Coalition, which is comprised of legislative liaisons from school systems and the superintendents association, and produces the GreenSheet newsletter highlighting MABE's positions, bill status updates, and Calls to Action during the legislative session.

In 2016, the General Assembly enacted significant legislation in the education policy areas of student health, student free speech, student assessments, after school programs, and operating and capital funding. Bills debated, but ultimately rejected, would have significantly impacted school board authority regarding employee relations in the areas of discipline and collective bargaining; procurement; and school calendar. MABE's 2016 Legislative Summary provides a comprehensive overview of the education related operating and capital budget actions and legislation enacted during the 2016 legislative session of the Maryland General Assembly.

The 2017 legislative session will convene on January 11, 2017 abd adjourn 90 days later on April 10, 2017. In advance of the legislative session, MABE has conducted its annual update of the association's Continuing Resolutions, which provide the foundation for MABE's legislative and policy positions in the coming year. On October 5, 2016 local board members approved Continuing Resolutions for 2016-2017. Following the Annual Conference, MABE's Legislative Committee is in the process of adopting the 2017 Legislative Positions and Priorities.