House Speaker Michael E. Busch
Maryland House Speaker Michael Busch (The Daily Record/Bryan P. Sears)

The long and (mostly) short of Hogan’s ’60-page’ bill

House Speaker Michael E. Busch Tuesday didn’t offer much in the way of a personal opinion about a proposal by Gov. Larry Hogan that would seek to limit mandated spending in years where expenses outpace revenues.

Hogan is proposing to freeze formula-driven budget increases in lean revenue years but Busch hasn’t yet read the bill and appeared to have it confused with another piece of legislation.

Busch, speaking to reporters in his office, repeatedly said the bill would work its way through the legislative process and acknowledged that he had not read the bill and cited its length as one of the initial reasons.

(Watch Busch’s meeting with reporters here.)

“The bill I think is like 60 pages long or longer than that so it’s quite a bit to get through,” Busch said to reporters and later, in response to a separate question, added: “I have not read the bill. It’s 60 some pages. That’s why they have a hearing.”

The trouble is, the bill isn’t 60 pages long.

House Bill 449, is two pages long. The bill analysis is almost everything you never thought you needed to know about mandated spending in 8 pages.

When asked about it later Busch said he may have confused it with another bill and apologized for the gaffe.

“I stand corrected,” Busch said.


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