Maryland Legislative Winners and Losers

by Nancy Hill (Sections of this article were first printed in the May issue of The Equiery.) The 2009 General Assembly session has come to an end.  The total number of bills introduced was 2,654 (1,073 in the Senate and 1,581 in the House of Delegates).  Every month it seems I write about the fact that the State of Maryland manages to spend more money than it takes in.  This month is no exception.   Our legislators adopted an annual operating budget of nearly $14 billion.  Although this amount balances the state’s current budget, it does not address the long-term budget deficit. Other big issues of this session were: The death penalty.  Currently, Maryland’s death penalty statute is among the most restrictive in the country but with the new law prosecutors will only be able to seek the death penalty if they have DNA or biological evidence, a videotape of the crime, or a video-recorded confession by the killer. The environment.  Maryland is now one of the few states that pledges to reduce its climate-warming greenhouse gases. Driver’s licenses.  Maryland will now require drivers to present a Social Security card or other proof that they are in the country legally to get a license.  Maryland has been one of only four states that didn’t require proof that someone is in the U.S. legally. Electricity.  The state will now partially...

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