Despite passage last year of legislation authorizing a constitutional amendment on slot machines, expanded gambling might again be on the agenda in Annapolis this year.
Sen. David R. Brinkley of Frederick County, the minority leader, said he plans to file a bill authorizing slots without the need for a public vote on a constitutional amendment.
The details would be a hybrid of what the Senate passed in 2005 and what lawmakers approved in November's special session, Brinkley said.
The move is necessary, he said, as a contingency in case the Court of Appeals throws out the bills passed in November.
Republicans have sued to throw out the slots bill and the new taxes passed over a procedural dispute. A circuit court threw out the lawsuit, but an appeal is pending before the Court of Appeals.
"We need to have something ready," Brinkley said, adding that he expects some Republicans will support his bill and some will not.