Maryland House passes bills on organ transplants, sponsored by speaker who was saved by a liver transplant

House Speaker Michael E. Busch (D-Anne Arundel). (Thalia Juarez / Capital Gazette)
The Maryland House of Delegates on Thursday unanimously passed two organ donations sponsored by House Speaker Michael E. Busch, whose life was saved by a liver transplant last year.

One would provide a $7,500 tax credit for living donors to help defray their costs of donating all or part of an organ. Busch’s sister, Kathleen "Laurie" Bernhardt, donated part of her liver to the speaker, who was diagnosed last spring with nonalcoholic steatohepatitis, a life-threatening condition. The Anne Arundel County Democrat has since recovered and resumed his duties as speaker.

The measure applies to tax years starting in 2018, meaning Busch’s sister would not directly benefit. Gov. Larry Hogan has announced his support for the bill. Continue reading

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