House OKs bill to subsidize flights to rural areas The...

Assembly Digest

March 26, 2000|By FROM STAFF REPORTS

House OKs bill to subsidize flights to rural areas

The state would begin subsidizing air service between Baltimore and small airports in rural parts of Maryland under a measure that cleared the House of Delegates yesterday.

The bill would allow the state to subsidize air traffic between Baltimore-Washington International Airport and airports in Cumberland, Hagerstown and St. Mary's County to spur economic development. The measure calls for state expenditures totaling $5 million over the next three years.

Sponsored by House Speaker Casper R. Taylor Jr., the bill was approved by the House by a vote of 128 to 9. Its prospects in the Senate are uncertain.

Bill requiring disclosure of business dealings OK'd

Lobbyists would have to disclose their business transactions with legislators, the governor and other elected state officials under a bill approved by the House in a 125-9 vote.

Under the bill, the State Ethics Commission must be informed whenever a lobbyist exchanges $1,000 or more in a single transaction with an elected official, or whenever the two do $5,000 or more worth of business in a six-month period.

The bill is pending in a Senate committee and is supported by Senate leaders.

House approves legislation for safer needle practices

The House unanimously approved a bill that would require the state to develop safer needle procedures to protect health care workers from getting hepatitis or human immunodeficiency virus from accidental needle-pricks. The Senate has adopted a slightly different version of the bill.

The bill, sponsored by Del. Dan K. Morhaim, a Baltimore County Democrat, would require hospitals to develop and keep written plans for controlling their workers' exposure to potentially contaminated needles and other sharp instruments.

About one-fourth of the state's health care facilities do not use needles with safety features, a legislative study found last year.

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