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By Michael Dresser, The Baltimore Sun | February 13, 2014
The Maryland Senate passed one of the governor's proposals to combat domestic violence Thursday, sending to the House a bill that would make it easier for assault victims to obtain permanent court orders telling their abusers to stay away. Meeting despite the snow, senators approved the measure that would add second-degree assault to the list of crimes that can trigger a protective order. There was no debate or dissent. A similar measure is scheduled for a hearing in the House next week.
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NEWS
By Jonathan Gibralter | February 11, 2014
As I listened to the conversation in the Maryland Senate regarding the bill to ban extremely high alcohol content beverages (SB-75), one argument said a ban would fail, and we should instead focus on educating our students. Well, incoming freshmen at Frostburg State University don't wait long before their education on the dangers of high-risk drinking begins. I start talking about it at the very first summer orientation session, and we keep telling parents and students about high-risk drinking and its consequences throughout.
SPORTS
The Baltimore Sun | January 30, 2014
The Stevenson men's lacrosse team was honored for its 2013 Division III national championship Thursday at the State House.  Mustangs players and coaches visited the Maryland House of Delegates and were presented with a resolution by Speaker of the House Michael E. Busch. They were later recognized in the Maryland Senate. Stevenson presented Busch and Senate President Thomas V. "Mike" Miller Jr. with jerseys signed by the team. The Mustangs won their first national title in May, beating Rochester Institute of Technology in the championship game in Philadelphia.
NEWS
By Erin Cox and The Baltimore Sun | January 21, 2014
The Maryland Senate approved an emergency plan Tuesday designed to help people stuck without insurance because of the state's glitch-ridden health exchange. Lawmakers vowed inquiries will continue into what went wrong. The emergency proposal, which now moves to the House of Delegates, would allow people to sign up for the state's high-risk insurance program that was supposed to end when the Affordable Care Act took effect. The coverage would be retroactive to Jan. 1. State officials estimate that as many as 5,000 people who tried without success to buy policies online may seek coverage through the legislation. The four companies that sell policies through the exchange also agreed to allow people to sign up for retroactive coverage dating back to Jan. 1 if they signed up for coverage by 5 p.m. Tuesday.
NEWS
January 15, 2014
I read with interest Maryland Department of Human Resources Secretary Ted Dallas' recent letter on the legacy of the War on Poverty ( "War on Poverty has yielded results," Jan. 11). However, I think Mr. Dallas is missing the point made by many in the community who think the War of Poverty hasn't been all that great, locally or nationally. Clearly, the gap between the poor and the rich has widened. While our state may be doing better than others, the threshold by which such comparisons are made is low. High unemployment, modest educational improvement, nagging levels of crime, vacant homes and limited access to meaningful capital continue in all too many parts of our community.
NEWS
Erin Cox and The Baltimore Sun | January 10, 2014
Baltimore Del. Maggie McIntosh joined the chorus of powerful legislators supporting legalized marijuana in Maryland. In a Friday email to supporters, McIntosh identified the legalizing pot as one of four "the biggest, most important issues" facing the General Assembly this year.  "Our current drug prohibition laws are wasteful and counterproductive, taking resources away from combating drug violence and promoting treatment options for those...
NEWS
Dan Rodricks | January 9, 2014
Turns out, I am glad that Thomas V. Mike Miller gives no hint of retiring from his position as president-forever of the Maryland Senate. I know that sounds odd coming from me, but that's how I feel today. And I don't even smoke pot. Miller is 71, and he's been in the legislature since '71. He's been president of the Senate so long no one can even remember the man he replaced in that position. (I'll give you a hint: It was Mickey Steinberg.) Jaded in the jowls and white of hair, Miller is all been-there/done-that about the General Assembly, one of those guys who likes position and power, but doesn't offer much else.
NEWS
December 11, 2013
Before The Sun and its readers start hyperventilating about the Maryland Department of Agriculture's decision to delay (not abandon) the proposed Phosphorous Management Tool regulation, it is important to share some insights into this common-sense decision ("Phosphorous rules delayed," Nov. 22). First, the department's actions are not rolling back any environmental protection program. Since 2005, farmers throughout the state have had state-mandated limits on the amount of phosphorus they can apply to their land, whether it is animal manure or commercial fertilizer.
NEWS
By Luke Broadwater, The Baltimore Sun | November 15, 2013
The meeting of East Baltimore's Berea community association is packed - standing room only - and leader Julius Henson is in control. There's a tavern to oppose. A computer lab to improve. Trash to clean up. Finally, Henson turns to the queue of political candidates from across the city who've been waiting for a chance to speak. He flashes a smile, but his tone is firm. "One minute," Henson tells them. "Quickly. " Watching Henson lead one of Baltimore's most powerful community associations, an observer might forget this is the same man who was convicted last year in a high-profile election-fraud case.
NEWS
By Amanda Yeager, ayeager@tribune.com | October 29, 2013
When Maryland Senate President Thomas V. "Mike" Miller Jr. took the opportunity to announce that state Sen. Jim Robey would be the next Senate Majority Leader during a speech at an Oct. 23 fundraiser for Del. Guy Guzzone, everyone in the room was the first to know. "Let's just say it was officially announced that night," Robey said Monday, Oct. 28 of the appointment. "There had been some discussion beforehand, but that's the first time I knew for sure. " Robey, 72, will spend his last year in the General Assembly in one of the state Democratic Party's top roles.
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