Legislature eases rules for casino hiring

April 02, 2013|By Michael Dresser, The Baltimore Sun

In a victory for Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, the General Assembly gave final passage Tuesday to a bill easing restrictions on hiring of people with criminal records for jobs at Maryland casinos.

The Senate voted XX-XX to approve the House-passed legislation, sending it to the governor.

Under current law, an individual who has been convicted of crimes of moral turpiitude and gambling is subject to a lifetime ban on employment at a facility with slot machines. The legislation limits that ban to seven years after a conviction or after a person comes off parole or probabtion.

"Crimes of moral turpitude, while not defined in Maryland law, has beenruled by the Attorney General's Office to mean an offense "for which fraudulent intent is a requisite element of proof."

The Rawlings-Blake administration made passage of the measure one of its priorities for this year's legislative session to improve the employment prospects of city residents who have been rehabilitated after committing offenses earlier in their lives.

While the measure would apply statewide, it could have its most significant near-term impact at the new Horseshoe Casino in downtown Baltimore, which will hire a work force of 1,700 for its scheduled opening next year.

The legislation is an emergency bil, which would become effective as soon as it is signed by the governor.

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