New Sen. Cory McCray will represent Baltimore on key Budget and Taxation Committee

Incoming Sen. Cory McCray will represent Baltimore on the powerful Budget and Taxation Committee, Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller announced Friday. McCray, 36, will take the committee seat held for 24 years by the man he defeated in June’s Democratic primary, Sen. Nathaniel McFadden. The committee is regarded as crucial for Baltimore because of its persistent need for help from the state. (Balt. Sun)

Read Full Article

Sarbanes, fellow Democrats say first bill of new U.S. House will seek to ‘drain the swamp’ with reforms

Rep. John Sarbanes and other House Democrats announced plans Friday for their first bill of the new, Democratic-controlled House of Representatives — a political reform measure they say would “drain the swamp” in a way President Donald Trump has not. The measure contains ethics reform, campaign finance reform and voting rights protections, and is designed “to make a powerful statement right out of the gate,” said Sarbanes, the Baltimore County Democrat who is the measure’s principal author. It is to be introduced when the new Congress convenes Jan. 3. (Balt. Sun)

Read Full Article

Md. lawmakers to take another pass at sports betting

Legislative leaders in the Maryland General Assembly say the odds on passing legislation to legalize sports betting are improving. Maryland lawmakers punted on legalizing sports betting as the clock ran out on the 2018 session. Meanwhile other neighboring states not only legalized the activity, they’re luring gamblers away from Maryland’s six casinos. “I’m not sure who the (legislative) opposition is,” said Del. Anne Kaiser, D-Montgomery and chair of the House Ways and Means Committee. “I think we’ll have better luck this year.” (Daily Record)

Read Full Article

Nominee to lead Prince George’s permitting department faces scrutiny

Incoming and current Prince George’s County Council members say they will closely examine the record of the District regulatory official tapped by County Executive-elect Angela Alsobrooks to lead the permitting and inspection department. Melinda Bolling is the subject of a whistleblower lawsuit and has been criticized by advocates and lawmakers in the District for her leadership of the D.C. Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs (DCRA). (Wash. Post)

Read Full Article

Legislative Black Caucus will push to raise the age for buying tobacco to 21 in Maryland

Concerned about the long-lasting toll smoking has taken on the African American community, the Legislative Black Caucus of Maryland is leading an effort to impose restrictions on access to tobacco products. The caucus is pushing for Maryland to join a growing number of cities and states that have raised the age to buy tobacco products, including electronic cigarettes, from 18 to 21. (Wash. Post)

Read Full Article

Miller announces Senate committee assignments

Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller Jr. (D-Calvert) on Friday announced the full committee lineup for his chamber, and other key assignments, for the upcoming General Assembly session. Miller picked committee chairmen and vice chairmen earlier this year. Miller has yet to announce who will be Senate president pro tem or majority leader in the coming term. The 47-member chamber will have 18 new senators in January. (Md. Matters)

Read Full Article

Maryland leaders remember President Bush

Maryland Republicans who knew President George H.W. Bush reflected on their interactions with the nation’s 41st president this weekend as the nation mourned his passing at the age of 94. Although Bush was born to privilege and reached the nation’s highest political offices, GOP leaders said they found him to be a remarkably warm man who brought an engaging, approachable style to his dealings with others. (Md. Matters)

Read Full Article

Kittleman unveils portrait, emphasizes need for bipartisanship in final Howard County address

In his final public speech as Howard Executive, Allan Kittleman touted his record and emphasized the importance of bipartisan politics. “Our greatest success has been in maintaining a civilized, bipartisan approach to government,” said the Republican, who in November lost his bid for a second term. “That’s something that the folks in Washington have not figured out.” His remarks came before a portrait unveiling at the county’s George Howard Building which was attended by at least 150 people. (Ho. Co. Times)

Read Full Article