The Maryland Catholic Conference offers this testimony in SUPPORT of House Bill 371 (HB 371). The Catholic Conference represents the public-policy interests of the three (arch)dioceses serving Maryland, the Archdioceses of Baltimore and Washington and the Diocese of Wilmington, which together encompass over one million Marylanders.
HB 371 will offer a state income tax credit to individuals or corporations that provide specified accessibility and visibility features to a home. The tax credit is valued at fifty percent of the renovation or construction costs incurred during the taxable year, up to $5,000.
The Maryland Catholic Conference supports HB 371 because it will provide a financial incentive to individuals and corporations to facilitate home use by persons with disabilities. The Church supports policies “that enable individuals with disabilities... to achieve the fullest measure of personal development [possible] ”, and encourages their participation in society. By incorporating accessibility features into homes, HB 371 encourages people with disabilities to live independently, and promotes their active participation in social life. The Maryland Catholic Conference works to support policies that enable people with disabilities to live healthy, independent lives.
It is for these reasons that the Maryland Catholic Conference urges a favorable report for HB 371. Thank you for your consideration.