Agenda Item 5B
June
28, 2016
Action
MEMORANDUM
June
24, 2016
TO:
FROM:
County Council
Robert H. Drummer, Senior LegisIative Attorney
~~
SUBJECT:
Action:
Bill
17-16,
Contracts and Procurement - Equal Benefits for
Domestic Partner - Repeal
Government Operations and Fiscal Policy Committee recommendation (3 - 0): enact
the
Bill
without amendment.
Bill
17-16,
Contracts and Procurement - Equal Benefits for Domestic Partner - Repeal,
sponsored by Lead Sponsor Councilmember Leventhal, was introduced on April
19, 2016.
A
public hearing was held on May 3 and a Government Operations and Fiscal Policy Committee
worksession was held on June
23.
Background
Bill
17-16
would repeal the equal benefits law requiring a County contractor
to
provide
same-sex domestic partner benefits to
its
employees. Bill
37-09,
Contracts and Procurement ­
Equal Benefits, was enacted on February
2,2010
and signed into law on February
16,2010.
Code
§11B-33D(b) provides:
A contractor or subcontractor must provide the same benefits to an employee with
a domestic partner as provided to an employee with a spouse.
If
a benefit cannot
reasonably be provided to a domestic partner, the contractor or subcontractor must
pay the employee the cash equivalent.
The legalization of same-sex marriage in Maryland created a new inequity for employers
who provided domestic partner benefits to same-sex couples only. Governor O'Malley resolved
this inequity by eliminating all domestic partner benefits for State employees soon after the State
legalized same-sex marriages. Although Maryland began recognizing same-sex marriages in
2013,
many States did not. Last year, the U.S. Supreme Court held that the right to marry is a
fundamental right that must be provided to same-sex couples in
Obergefell
v.
Hodges,
135 S.Ct.
2584 (2015).
Speaking for the Court, Justice Kennedy said:
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These considerations lead to the conclusion that the right to marry is a fundamental
right inherent
i~
the liberty of the person, and under the Due Process and Equal
Protection Clauses of the Fourteenth Amendment couples ofthe same-sex may not
be deprived of that right and that liberty. The Court now holds that same-sex
couples may exercise the fundamental right to marry. 135 S.Ct. at 2604-2605.
The
Obergefell
case again changed the legal framework underlying the County's equal
benefits law. The original purpose of the equal benefits law no longer applies because same-sex
couples are guaranteed the right to marry in all States.
Many States have reacted to this change in law by eliminating all domestic partner benefits.
See the
Stateline
article reviewing these reactions at ©8-13. In addition to the State of Maryland,
the Montgomery County Board of Education eliminated all domestic partner benefits for its
employees after same-sex marriage was legalized in Maryland.
In
contrast to this trend to
eliminate domestic partner benefits, the Executive submitted a Bill to the Council, introduced as
Bill 13-16 on April 12, that would provide opposite sex domestic partner benefits to employees
represented by MCGEO and unrepresented employees. Bill 17-16 would follow the trend of
eliminating domestic partner benefits by permitting a County contractor to decide whether or not
to provide domestic partner benefits for their employees.
Lead Sponsor Councilmember Leventhal explained his reasons for introducing this Bill
and related Bill 16-16 that would eliminate domestic partner benefits for County employees and
retirees in an April 13 memorandum at ©7.
Public Hearing
There were no speakers at the May 3 public hearing.
GO Committee Worksession
Councilmember George Leventhal also attended the worksession. Robert Drummer,
Senior Legislative Attorney, represented the Council staff. The Committee discussed the history
of the equal benefits law for County contractors and the changes in the law governing same sex
marriage.
The Committee (3-0) recommended approval of the Bill as introduced.
Discussion
The Equal Benefits Law for County contractors was enacted in 2010 to further the County's
strong public policy against discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. Since Maryland
recognized same sex marriage in 2013 and the Supreme Court extended the right to marry to same
sex couples in 2015, the purpose ofthe original law has evaporated. Committee recommendation
(3-0): enact the Bill as introduced with the technical amendments to the long title presented to the
Committee.
2
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This packet contains:
Bill 17-16
Legislative Request Report
Councilmember Leventhal April 13 Memorandum
Stateline, September 11, 2015
Fiscal and Economic Impact statement
Circle #
1
6
7
8
14
F:\LAW\BILLS\1617 Procurement - Equal Benefits - Repeal\Action Memo.Docx
3
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Bill No.
--:..17--:'-'16"--_ _ _ _ _ __
.....
Concerning: Contracts and
Procurement- Equal Benefits for
Domestic Partner - Repeal
Revised: April
19, 2016
Draft No.
L
Introduced:
April
19, 2016
Expires:
October
19, 2017
Enacted: _ _ _ _ _ _ _ __
Executive: _ _ _ _ _ _ _ __
Effective: ____- - - - - - ­
Sunset Date: ...... ..:,::o""'n=e_---:::_ _ __
N
Ch, _ _ Laws of Mont. Co. _ __
I
COUNTY COUNCIL
FOR MONTGOMERY COUNTY, MARYLAND
Lead Sponsor: Councilmember Leventhal
AN
ACT
to:
(1)
(2)
repeal the law requiring the County contractors to provide domestic partner benefits
for certain employees; and
generally amend the
law regarding benefits for domestic partners.
By amending
Montgomery County Code
Chapter [[33, Personnel and Human Resources]] lIB, Contracts and Procurement
Sections [[33-22J1llB-33D
..
.
.
Boldface
Underlining
[Single boldface brackets)
Double underlining
[[Double boldface brackets))
Heading or defined term.
Added to existing law by original bil/.
Deletedfrom existing law by original bill.
Added by amendment.
Deletedfrom existing law or the bill by amendment.
Existing law unaffected by bill.
The County Council for Montgomery County, Maryland approves the following Act.'
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Bill No. 17-16
1
Sec.
1.
Section IlB-33D is amended as follows:
2
3
4
IlB-33D. [Equal Benefits] Reserved.
[(a)
Definitions.
In
this Section, the following words have the meanings
indicated:
Benefit
means a plan, program, or policy provided or offered by a
5
6
7
contractor or subcontractor to some or all employees as part of the
employer's total compensation package. This may include:
(1)
(2)
(3)
(4)
(5)
(6)
(7)
(8)
bereavement leave;
family medical leave;
sick leave;
health benefits;
dental benefits;
disability insurance;
life insurance; and
retirement benefits.
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
Cash equivalent
means the actual cost to the employer for insurance
benefits to the spouse of a married employee, which are not provided
to a domestic partner, if:
(1)
the benefit would be provided to a domestic partner of an
employee if that person were a spouse of the employee; and
(2)
the employer is unable to provide the benefit to a domestic
partner of an employee after making a reasonable effort to do so.
Contract
means a contract for services subject to Section 11B-33A or a
19
20
21
22
23
24
contract for construction services subject to Section I1B-33C.
Domestic partnership
means:
25
2.Docx
o
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Bill No. 17-16
26
27
(1)
a relationship between two individuals of the same sex that has
been licensed as a civil union or marriage in a jurisdiction where
such a civil union or marriage is pennitted; or
28
29
30
31
32
33
34
(2)
an unlicensed relationship between two individuals of the same
sex who:
(A)
share a close personal relationship and are responsible for
each other's welfare;
(B)
have shared the same legal residence for at least 12
months;
35
36
37
38
39
(C)
(D)
are at least 18 years old;
have voluntarily consented to the relationship, without
fraud or duress;
(E)
are not married to, or in a domestic partnership with, any
other person;
40
41
42
43
44
45
46
(F)
are not related by blood or affinity in a way that would
disqualify them from marriage under State law if the
employee and partner were opposite sexes;
(G)
(H)
are each legally competent to contract;
share financial and legal obligations; and
legally register the domestic partnership if a domestic
partnership registration system exists in the jurisdiction
where the employee resides.
(I)
47
48
49
Employee
means a person who perfonns work on a contract in an
employment relationship with the contractor or a subcontractor.]
[(b)
50
51
Equal benefits requirement.
A contractor or subcontractor must
provide the same benefits to an employee with a domestic partner as
provided to an employee with a spouse. If a benefit cannot reasonably
52
@
2.Docx
F:\LAW\BILLS\1617 Procurement - Equal Benefits - Repeal\BiII
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Bill No. 17-16
53
54
55
[(
c)
be provided to a domestic partner, the contractor or subcontractor must
pay the employee the cash equivalent.]
Contract requirement.
Each contract covered by this Section must:
(1)
require the contractor and all subcontractors to comply with this
Section; and
(2)
specify that an aggrieved employee, as a third-party beneficiary,
may by civil action recover the cash equivalent of any benefit
denied in violation of this Section or other compensable
damages.]
[(d)
Enforcement.
(1)
The Director or a designee may perform random or regular audits
and investigate any complaint of a violation of this Section. If
the Director determines that this Section has been violated, the
Director must issue a written decision, including appropriate
sanctions, and may withhold from payment due the contractor,
pending a final decision, an amount sufficient to:
(i)
56
57
58
59
60
61
62
63
64
65
66
67
68
69
70
pay each employee of the contractor or subcontractor the
cash equivalent of the benefits denied; and
71
(ii)
satisfy a liability of a contractor for liquidated damages as
provided in this Section.
72
73
(2)
A contractor or subcontractor must not discharge or otherwise
retaliate against an employee for asserting any right under this
Section or for filing a complaint of a violation.
74
75
76
77
(3)
The
sanctions
of Section
llB-33(b)
which
apply
to
noncompliance
with
nondiscrimination requirements apply with
equal force and scope to noncompliance with this Section.
78
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2.Docx
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Bill No. 17-16
79
(4)
Each contract subject to this Section may specifY the payment of
liquidated damages to the County by the contractor for any
noncompliance with this Section.
80
81
82
83
84
(5)
Each contractor is jointly and severally liable for noncompliance
with this Section by a subcontractor.
(6)
A contractor may appeal a written decision of the Director that
the contractor violated this Section to the Chief Administrative
Officer within 10 working days after receiving a copy of the
decision. The Chief Administrative Officer must designate a
hearing officer to conduct a hearing under Chapter 2A after
receiving a timely appeal. If the contractor does not appeal a
written decision. within 10 working days after receipt, the
decision of the Director becomes final and binding.]
85
86
87
88
89
90
91
92
93
[(e)
Report.
The Chief Administrative Officer must report annually to the
Council and Executive on the operation of and compliance with this
Section.]
94
95
96
97
Sec. 2. Transition.
The amendments to Section IlB-33D made in Section 1 apply to any contract
awarded after the date this Act takes effect.
Approved:
98
99
100
101
Nancy Floreen, President, County Council
Date
102
Approved:
103
Isiah Leggett, County Executive
Date
F:\LAW\BILLS\1617 Procurement - Equal Benefits - RepeaJ\BiIl
2.Docx
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LEGISLATIVE REQUEST REPORT
Bill 17-16
Contracts and Procurement
-
Equal Benefits for Domestic Partner
-
Repeal
DESCRIPTION:
Bill 17-16 would repeal the requirement
in
the County Procurement
Law that contractors and subcontractors provide same-sex domestic
partner benefits to its employees.
The US Supreme Court recently held that same sex marriage must
be recognized in all 50 States.
Permit County contractors and subcontractors to decide for
themselves if they want to provide domestic partner benefits to their
employees.
PROBLEM:
GOALS AND
OBJECTIVES:
COORDINATION:
Office of Procurement
FISCAL IMPACT:
Office ofManagement and Budget
ECONOMIC
IMPACT:
EVALUATION:
EXPERIENCE
ELSEWHERE:
Office of Finance
N/A
N/A
SOURCE OF
INFORMATION:
APPLICATION
WITHIN
MUNICIPALITIES:
PENALTIES:
Robert H. Drummer, Senior Legislative Attorney
N/A
NI
A
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MONTGOMERY COUNT'( COUNCIL
ROCKVILLE, MARYLAND
GeORGE LEVENTHAL
M E M 0 RAN
0
U M
April 13,
2016
COUNCH.MEMBER
AT-LARGE
TO:
FROM:
SUBJECT:
Councilmembers
George L. Leventhal
~
Bills for introduction re: domestic partner benefits
Dear Colleagues,
I
wi II be introducing the two attached bills and welcome your co-sponsorship.
At the request of the County Executive, legislation was introduced this week to extend
domestic partner benefits to all county employees. I canlt go along with this in
2016.
The
county has provided health benefits to members Qfthe police union who register as
non~
married domestic partners (regardless of Whether they are straight or
gay
or lesbian) Since
2001,
and to members of the firefighters' union since
2010.
This bill would expand the benefit
to members of MCGEO, the Montgomery County Government Employee Organization.
I
strongly support marriage equality, and
it
makes perfect sense to me that when marriage
became legal in Maryland for gays andlesbians, former Governor
O~Malley
eliminated domestic
partner benefits for all state emp1oyees, and Montgomery County PubJic Schools eliminated
them for MCPS employees, Mr. Leggett's bill, which I oppose, goes in the opposite direction,
extending health benefits to non-married employees who live together at an estimated cost to
taxpayers of $4.8 million over the next six years.
Domestic partner benefits made sense when marriage was illegal for gays and lesbians
l
but
they don't make sense today. We should recognize that times have changed and taxpayers
should not have to continue paying the cost of.an historic artifact, I am strongly.committed to
un iversa.1
access
to health care but th is can be achieved through other means, inchJding getting
married!
The first of the two
bills
would repeal domestic partner benefits for county employees,
The
second bill would repeal the law requiring a county contractor to provide same,.sex domestic
partner benefits to
its
employees,
Please let me know
if
you have questions or would like
tQ
co-sponsor either or both bills.
STELL-A
EI.
WERNER
OpPleS'
1!IUIL.OING
100 MARYL.AND A\lttNUE, 6TH FLOOR,
ROCKVILLe.,
MARYt.AN0.20S50
2.4Dn77-78t I Of(
24Dn77-7900,
TTY
Z4Dn77-79
14, F'AX24Dn77-7989
WWW.MONTGOM£RVCOUNTY.MD:$OV/COUNCIL
~PI'tINT£D
ON RftCYCL£D F'AF'ER
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41712016
After Same-Sex Marriage Ruling. States Reconsider Domestic Partner Benefits
PEvV
CHARITABLE
TRUSTS
The Pew Charitable Trusts
I
Research
&
Analysis
I
Stateline
I
After Same-Sex Marriage Ruling. States
Reconsider Domestic Partner Benefits
.
.
STATELINE
After Same-Sex Marriage Ruling, States
Reconsider Domestic Partner Benefits
September 11. 2015
By
Rebecca Heitsch
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4f712015
After Same-Sex Maniage Ruling. States Reconsider Domestic Partner Benefits
The U.S. Supreme Court ruling legalizing same-sex marriage has some state and
local governments reconsidering their domestic partner benefits.
Now that the U.S. Supreme Court has legalized same-sex marriage nationwide, some
states that offer health and retirement benefits to their employees' domestic partners
are considering changing those policies, in large part to save money or avoid
discrimination lawsuits.
Before the ruling, 34 percent of state and local governments allowed unmarried same­
sex couples to receive health care benefits, while 28 percent did so for domestic
partners of the opposite sex, according to a study of public sector benefits by the
Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Based on what happened in states that legalized gay marriage on their own, those
numbers are about to dwindle"
Maryland ended domestic partner benefits for state employees, which it offered only to
same-sex couples, just a few months after it legalized same-sex marriage in 2013.
Arizona did the same after its legalization in 2014. Alaska still offers same-sex domestic
partner benefits to the roughly 6,000 state employees it covers, but it is now reviewing
that policy. The majority of Alaska state employees get their health insurance through
state-funded union health trusts, and the state's largest union, the Alaska State
Employees Association, ended same-sex domestic partner benefits for the more than
8,500 state and municipal employees it covers.
Connecticut and Delaware never offered domestic partner benefits to their workers, but
they did allow those in civil unions to add their partners to their health and retirement
plans. The two states scrapped those benefits once same-sex couples could marry.
t
.
I
_
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41712016
After Same-Sex Marriage Ruling. States Reconsider Domestic Partner Benefits
Of the 13 states that prohibited same-sex marriage before the Supreme Court's June
ruling (Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky. Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri,
Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, Tennessee and Texas). only Michigan
offered anything similar to domestic partner benefits, as employees could add to their
plan one adult they were not related to. Matthew Fedorchu k with the Michigan Civil
Service Commission, which oversees state benefits, said the fate of those benefits
could be hashed out in ongoing labor negotiations.
Government workers are likely to see more changes than those in the private sector.
Bruce Elliott, manager of compensation and benefits for the Society for Human
Resource Management (SHRM), cited a survey of 153 companies by Mercer, a health
care advocacy group, which found that although some companies had plans to get rid of
their domestic partner benefits, many were not planning changes. Of the 19 percent that
offered domestic partner benefits to same-sex couples, 23 percent said they would drop
the option in the next year, while another 23 percent said they would do so over the next
two or three years. The majority of companies offered domestic partner benefits to both
homosexual and heterosexual couples, and 62 percent of those said they were not
planning any changes.
Elliott said domestic partner benefits may be more vulnerable within state and local
government, where competition over employees isn't as fierce as in the private sector
and where leaders have been under pressure to keep finances in check since the
recession.
A Question of Fairness
Cathryn Oakley, senior legislative counsel for the Human Rights Campaign, a gay rights
advocacy group, said the group is encouraging public and private employers to keep
offering domestic partner benefits. But she said employers that offer domestic partner
.1
.......... _.1:__ .....
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41712016
After Same-Sex Marriage Ruling. States Reconsider Domestic Partner Benefits
benefits exclusively to same-sex couples should extend them to heterosexual couples
to avoid discrimination lawsuits.
That risk is part of the reason the capital city of Annapolis, Maryland, decided to end its
domestic partner benefit program.
'We had added it because the law didn't treat people equally," Paul Rensted, former
human resources manager for the city, said of the program, created in 2010. Now all city
employees must be married to add an adult to their benefits package, and Rensted said
couples were given six months' notice, with four employees ultimately marrying.
Many in the gay rights community say keeping domestic partner benefits would
continue to benefit some in the gay community as well as other non-traditional families.
But straight couples would continue to be the biggest user of the benefits, they say.
"Millennials are waiting longer to get married, but that doesn't mean they're not living
together-they're not all living with mom and dad," said SHRM's Elliott.
Nancy Polikoff, a family law professor at American University Washington College of
Law, said she likes "plus one" policies that allow employees to take care of their
families, whether it be a spouse, a partner or an aging relative.
"The purpose of providing benefits is to help employees fund the financial and
emotional obligations in their homes, and marriage is not always a part ofthat," she
said.
She pOinted to Salt Lake City's plan as a model. City employees can add any adult to
their plan as long as they live together.
Jodi Langford, who oversees the benefits program for the city, said it has been used to
cover parents, siblings and unman;ed children older than 26 who would otherwise age
out of their parents' health insurance plans. Of the 60 people on the plan before same­
(jj)
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41712016
After Same-Sex Marriage Ruling. States Reconsider Domestic Partner Benefits
sex marriage was made legal, only about 10 have switched to spousal benefits.
"If we stop, we would have parents, siblings, boyfriends and girlfriends who would be
without benefits," Langford said. While the program is secure for now, she said there's
been some talk about reviewing it within the next year.
In Florida, public universities are planning to review their domestic partner benefits.
Because only spouses are eligible for state-funded benefits, state universities had to
come up with creative solutions to offer benefits to gay employees' domestic partners. It
was an anonymous gift that covered the additional costof adding an adult beneficiary to
a health plan at Florida State University (FSU) starting in 2014, while the University of
North Florida (UNF) began covering the additional cost to employees through its
fundraising foundation in 2006.
Spokesmen for both universities said the programs played a role in attracting talent.
UNF is winding down its program, which had only been offered to same-sex couples,
said Vice President and Chief of Staff Tom Serwatka.
"When we went to this, we did so on the basis that heterosexual couples had a choice
whether they wanted to marry and understood the full implication of that choice.
Homosexual couples didn't have that choice." Now that they do, Serwatka said, it
makes less sense for the university to raise private funds to pay for the benefits.
. "The university wasn't trying to change the idea of marriage as the policy for the state,
and state funding required marriage," he said.
FSU is reviewing its program, which only paid for health insurance for domestic partners
who could not get insurance through their work, said spokesman Dennis Schnittker.
"The gift was made under the belief of the donor that the state would be funding the
bene'fit in the near future," he said.
®
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41712016
After Same-Sex Marriage Ruling, States Reconsider Domestic Partner Benefits
No Change?
In some states, however, domestic partner benefits are likely to continue.
California's domestic partner benefit statutes remain intact, and in Massachusetts the
policy is part of a still-standing executive order. Maine and Vermont, which was the first
state to offer domestic partner benefits,' are not planning to change their programs.
"We wouldn't just get rid of it because same-sex marriage has come about," said Tom
Cheney, deputy commissioner for Vermont's Department of Human Resources. "The
state of Vermont has long seen the value in offering domestic partner benefits to
couples of all types. It's a useful recruitment and retention tool for the state as an
. employer."
Elliott believes it's too early to know what most employers-both public and private­
will do with domestic partner benefits.
"Once we get past this year into next year's open enrollment, we're going to see some
real change. The tea leaves haven't dried yet," he said.
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ROCK VILLE,
MARYLAND
MEMORANDUM
May 2. 2016
TO:
Nancy Floreen, President,. County eouncj]
and Budget
Jennifer A. Hugh.es, Director,
Joseph F. Beach, Director,
I)e.partm~ofFimUl'Y
FElS for Bill 17-16, Contracts and Procurement - Equal Benefi.ts for Domestic
Partner - Repeal
Please
find attached the fiscal and economic impact statements for the above­
FROM:
oftice~nag~.l;Re.lt~
SUBJfIT:
referenced legislation.
JAH.:tz
cc: Bonnie Kirkland, Assistant Chief Administrative
Officer
Lisa Austin, Offices of the County Executive
Joy
Nurmi, Speciat Assistant to the County Executive
Patrick Lacefield, Director, Public Information Office
Joseph F. Beach, Director,
Departnlcnt
ofFinance
Shawn
Y. Stokes, Director, Office of Human Recourses
David Platt, Department
ofFinllllce
Corey Orlosky, Office of Management and Budget
Alex Espinosa, Office of Management and Budget
Naeem Mia, Office of Management and Budget
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Fiscal Impact Statement
Bill 17-16 -
&
Contracts and Procurement­
Equal Benefits for Domestic
Partner~
Repeal
I .
Legislative
Summary
The proposed legislation would repeal the requirement for a contractor or subcontractor
to provide the same benefits to an employee
\\rith
a domestic partner as provided to an
employee with a spouse.
2.
An estimate of cbanges in County revenues
.and
expenditures regardless of whether the
revenues or expenditures are assumed in the recommended or approved budget. Includes
source of infonnation,. assumptions, and methodologies used.
No changes in revenue or expenditures.
3. Revenue and expenditure estimates covering at least the next 6 fiscal years.
No revenue or expenditures v.ill
OCCur
in the next 6 fiscal
years.
4. An acruarial analysis through the entire amortization
period
for each bill
that
would affect
retiree pension or group insurance costs.
The proposed legislation does not affect retiree pension or group insurance costs.
5. An estimate ofexpenditures related
to
County's infomlation technology (IT) systems,
including Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems.
Tbe proposed legislation does not affect the County's IT systems..
6. Later actions
that
may affect future revenue and expenditures
if
the bill authorizes future
spending.
The proposed legislation does not authorize future spending.
7.
An
estimate of the
staff
time
needed
to
implement the bill.
No staff time.
8. An explanation of bow the addition of new staff responsibilities would affect other duties.
No staff time.
9.
An
estimate ofcosts when an additional appropriation is needed.
The proposed legislation does not requite additional appropriation.
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10. A description of
any
variable
that
could affect revenue and cost estimates.
No effect.
11. Ranges of revenue or expenditures that are uncertain or difficult to project
No effect.
12. Ifa bill is
likely
to
have
no
fiscal impact,
why
that
is the case.
The current Equal Benefits Law enforcement
is
complaint driven. No complaints were
received
since
the
law went into
effect
in 2011. The proposed bill
~il1
repeal the Equal
Benefits Law. Work involved includes: Removing sections from current solicitation
template (in general terms and conditions), removing sections from website and FAQs,
and removing sections from training materials.
13.
Other fIscal impacts or comments.
None.
14. The
foUo~ing
contributed
to
and concurred
with
this analysis:
Cherri Branson, Office of Procurement
Pam Jones, Office of Procurement
Grace De.nno, Office of Procurement
Erika Lopez-Finn, Office ofManagement and Budget
.Tennife
Office
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Economic Impact Statement
Bill 17-16,
Personnel- Contracts and Procurement - Repeal
Background:
This legislation would repeal the equal benefits law requiring the County contractor to provide
same-sex partner benefits to all employees. Benefits for a contractor's partner signed into law on
February 16,2010. County Code provides tbat "a contf'dCtor or subcontractor must provide the
same benefits to an employee with a domestic partner as provided to an employee
with
a
spouse."
Council member George Leventhal. lead sponsor for
Bill 17-16,
proposes to
repeal
domestic
partner benefits to employees
of
C~lUnty
contractors and subcontractors. The previous legislation
was appropriate at a time when marriage was illegal for gays and lesbians. However, since the
state recognizes same-sex marriage, such legislation is no longer necessary and the County's
taxpayers should not continue to have to pay for providing such
a
benefit. Bill 17- 16 would
allow County contractors and subcontractors to decide ifthe)' want to provide domestic partner
benefits
to
their employees.
1. The sources of information, assumptions, and methodologies used.
There are no sources
of
information or methodologies used in the preparation of the
economic impact statement. Finance assumes that since same-sex marriage is legal in the
State of Maryland, all domesti.c partners of employees of County contractors and
subcontractors will many. Finance also assumes that those partners \\no received benefits
under current County Code (Section I1B-33D(b»
~111
receive the
same benefits as married
partners.
2. A description of any variable that couJd atrect the economic impact estimates.
There no variables that couid affect the economic impact estimates.
3. The Bill's positive
or
negative effect,
if
any on employment, spending, savings,
investment, incomes, and property values in tbe County.
The assumption presented in item
# 1
is that aU domestic partners
who
were eJigible for
benefits under current law 'Will marry and will receive the same benefits. Therefore, Bill 17­
16
would have no economic effect on employment. spending, savings, investment. incomes,
and property values in
the
County.
4.
If
a Bill
is
likely to have no economic impact, why is that the ease?
Bill 17 16 would have
no
economic impact. Please see paragraph #3.
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Economic Impact Statement
Bill 17-16, Personnel- Contracts and Procurement - Repeal
5. The following contributed to or concurred with this analysis:
David Platt,
Mary
Cnsciotti,
and Rob Hagedoom, Finance.
Date
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