State Digest

STATE DIGEST

January 03, 2007

Speaker Busch fills subcommittee seats

House Speaker Michael E. Busch picked 10 lawmakers yesterday to lead the subcommittees that help shape the state budget.

Slots as chairmen or vice chairmen of subcommittees are generally the lowest rungs on the Annapolis leadership ladder, but the House Appropriations Committee, which annually works through the state's $29 billion budget to decide what programs to cut and which to keep, relies heavily on its subcommittees to make decisions. That means the chairmen and vice chairmen of those groups have an unusual amount of influence over transportation projects, public buildings, education funding and other issues.

Del. Adrienne A. Jones of Baltimore County will chair the Capital Budget subcommittee. Del. Melony Ghee Griffith of Prince George's will be vice chairman. Del. Mary-Dulany James of Harford County will be chairwoman of Health and Human Resources, and Del. Keith E. Haynes of Baltimore will serve as vice chairman. Del. Tawanna P. Gaines of Prince George's is the new Transportation and Environment chairwoman, with Del. Murray D. Levy of Charles County as her vice chairman. Del. John L. Bohanan Jr. of St. Mary's County will chair the Education and Economic Development subcommittee with Del. Galen R. Clagett of Frederick as his vice chairman.

Del. Charles E. Barkley of Montgomery County was named chairman of the Public Safety and Administration subcommittee. Del. Steven J. DeBoy Sr. of Baltimore County will be vice chairman. Clagett will also chair the Oversight Committee on Personnel, and Griffith will head the Oversight Committee on pensions.

andrew a. green

Annapolis

O'Malley press aide is joining Gansler

As Gov.-elect Martin O'Malley heads to Annapolis, a member of his communications staff is swapping bosses. Raquel Guillory, who has been with the departing Baltimore mayor for about four years, has signed on as communications aide to Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler, who was sworn in yesterday in Annapolis. Gansler succeeds the retiring J. Joseph Curran Jr., O'Malley's father-in-law. Meanwhile, Curran's top press aide, Kevin Enright, is leaving to become communications director to Howard County Executive Ken Ulman. He starts Jan. 10.

Jennifer Skalka

Frederick County: New Market

Town Council votes to annex 260 acres

The town of New Market has expanded, but not by as much as growth opponents had feared. In a unanimous vote Friday, the three-member Town Council approved annexation of a 260-acre parcel that was the smaller of two properties proposed for annexation to the Frederick County community of 500 people. The annexation could bring another 900 homes to New Market. The prospective developer of the larger parcel, a 938-acre tract, withdrew an annexation request pending possible revisions by the Frederick County Commissioners to the region's disputed growth plan.

associated press

Talbot County: Easton

Sports items collected for troops in Iraq

Baseballs, softballs and plastic flying discs are headed to Iraq after an Easton official heard that Marines from the area missed summer games at home. Easton Town Manager Robert Karge heard from his deployed son that a former Caroline County Little Leaguer stationed in the Iraqi city of Fallujah said the Marines missed the American tradition of pickup baseball and softball. "I figure you can't have south Caroline [County] kids needing baseball equipment anywhere in the world and not having it," Karge told The Star Democrat in Easton. Karge will collect new and used sporting goods all month from the Easton Town Office. The donations will be sent to the Marines' Combat Logistics Battalion 5 Engineer Company in Fallujah.

associated press

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