Maryland House Bill 358 (2008), Maryland Funding Accountability and Transparency Act
Introduced by Delegate Warren E. Miller (MD-R-9A), Maryland House Bill 358 created the Maryland Funding Accountability and Transparency Act of 2008, which affects the State Finance and Procurement Statute 3-414. This requires “the Department of Budget and Management to develop and operate a single searchable website that includes specified information for State payments over $25,000” and specify the “parameters of the website; requiring the Chief of Information Technology in the Department of Budget and Management to contract with an outside expert to study expansion or replacement of the website. 
After passing unanimously in the House and Senate, HB 358 was signed into law by Governor Martin O’ Malley on May 22, 2008.
- House Bill 358 was originally introduced in a similar form last year. Debate on the bill began on January 25, 2008. After the amendment process, the House passed the bill on March 30.
- Senate debate began on March 20 and the bill was passed on April 1, 2008.
- Governor Martin O’ Malley approved the bill on May 22, 2008.
Health and Government Operations
Budget and Taxation
- Original Vote: 137-0 
- After being amended, the original vote was unopposed with Delegate Jay Walker not voting and delegates Dereck Davis, Melony Griffith, and Sally Jameson, excused as absent.
- Reconsideration Vote: 137-0 
- The vote was moved to reconsideration where Delegates Walker and Griffith, now present, voted for the bill with Delegates Davis, Jameson, Robinson, and Stull, excused as absent.
- Vote: 47-0 
- All Senators were present and voted unanimously to adopt HB 358.
All voting was conducted in roll call format.
The website will begin operation on or before January 1, 2009.
The payments to be reported include:
- Grants, sub grants, loans, awards, cooperate agreements, and other forms of financial assistance; and
- contracts, subcontracts, purchase orders, and other payments.
Payment information available on the website will include:
- The name of a payee receiving a payment
- The location of a payee by postal zip code
- The amount of payment; and
- The name of an agency making a payment
The act does not apply to “state employees with respect to the employees compensation” (salaries) and cannot be used to “require the disclosure of information that is confidential under federal or state law.”
(a) The Chief of Information Technology in the Department of Budget and Management shall conduct a study to assess the feasibility, approach, and cost to expand or replace the searchable website… to allow the public, at no cost, to search and aggregate State funding by different elements, which may include:
- the name of an entity receiving an award and, if applicable, the parent entity of the recipient;
- the amount of an award;
- the transaction type;
- the name of an agency making an award;
- the budget program fund source;
- a descriptive purpose of each funding action or State award;
- the location of an entity receiving the award; and
- any other relevant information specified by the Department.
The Chief must report the findings of the study to the General Assembly on or before June 30, 2010.
Implementation and Sunset:
Maryland Funding Accountability and Transparency Act of 2008 took effect on July 1, 2008.
Section 2 will expire and the Chief of Information Technology will not be required to report findings to the General Assembly after June 30, 2010.
BILL INFO-2008 Regular Session-HB 358, Maryland General Assembly, http://mlis.state.md.us/2008RS/billfile/HB0358.htm
Maryland House Bill 358 (2008): Section 1(B), Section 2(C), Section 1(C), Section 1(A)(2)(II)(1), Section 1(F), Section 2(D)