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Scholarship Scam

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NEWS
January 7, 1992
Once again, state legislators will consider a bill in the General Assembly session that begins this month to end Maryland's politically tainted college scholarship program. And once again, sanctimonious senators and delegates will bury the bill, proclaiming their intentions to do good deeds with the millions of dollars they hand out while they use the funds to solidify constituent support for their re-election bids.Legislative scholarships -- $6.4 million a year -- continue to rank as one of the biggest outrages perpetrated on the public by the General Assembly.
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NEWS
April 8, 1995
Any chance of reforming Maryland's embarrassing legislative scholarship program lies in the hands of state Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller Jr. As a leader of the conference committee that will attempt to draft a compromise measure suitable to members of both the Senate and the House of Delegates, Mr. Miller is in the crucial position of shepherding a reform that could eventually abolish the 127-year-old scholarship scam. He should make the most of this opportunity.The conference co-leader will be House Speaker Caspar R. Taylor Jr. His colleagues have willingly voted in recent years to kill the program.
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NEWS
March 19, 1993
It looks like one man stands between success or failure for the best chance ever to abolish Maryland's unnecessary and embarrassing legislative scholarship program. Unfortunately, he's a powerful man -- State Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller Jr. -- and he supports the program.Attempts to junk the scholarship scam have never progressed so far as the reform efforts of this General Assembly session. The House of Delegates has overwhelmingly passed a bill asking the state's Secretary of Higher Education to craft a non-political plan that would meet the needs of middle-income students currently receiving funds from the legislative program.
NEWS
February 20, 1995
The Ways and Means Committee of Maryland's House of Delegates is scheduled to hold hearings Wednesday on two bills to abolish the legislative scholarship program. Similar bills sailed through the House in 1993 and 1994. It's nearly a foregone conclusion, then, that the delegates will again pass a measure to kill the scam in which lawmakers personally award millions of taxpayer dollars in scholarships to college students.The $8.5 million question -- that's the amount in the scholarship kitty this year -- is this: What will happen to the House bill when it reaches the state Senate?
NEWS
March 25, 1993
Leaders of the state Senate have succeeded in killing th best chance ever to abolish the embarrassing legislative scholarship program. The Senate's Economic and Environmental Affairs Committee rejected a bill that had sailed through the House of Delegates. The measure asked Maryland's Secretary of Higher Education to create a non-political plan that would make sure middle-income students aren't overlooked when state scholarships are awarded.Because the Senate rejected this bill -- and because the senators have been the biggest abusers and beneficiaries of this old political perk -- perhaps it's fitting they be responsible for crafting legislation to reform the program once and for all.Apparently that will be done this summer by the EEA education subcommittee.
NEWS
February 25, 1993
It was disappointing, though hardly surprising, to see how members of the House of Delegates Ways and Means Committee acted at last Tuesday's hearing on proposals to reform the state's embarrassing legislative scholarship program.Committee members whined. They bristled. They lashed out. In short, they behaved like bratty kids who refuse to clean up after themselves.Del. Leslie Hutchinson of Baltimore County told two delegates sponsoring reform bills that she was "quite offended" by their measures.
NEWS
January 20, 1993
The scam known as Maryland's legislative scholarship program becomes a bigger embarrassment with each passing year.That's the 125-year-old program in which Maryland's 141 delegates and 47 senators annually bestow scholarships worth millions of dollars on their constituents. No other state has such a program.Elected officials have drawn charges of political favoritism by giving the grants to the children of associates and campaign workers. Some legislators have even displayed the stupendous gall of handing scholarships to members of their own families.
NEWS
March 12, 1994
It turns out that the General Assembly isn't the only legislative body in Maryland with its own scholarship scam. As The Sun's Thomas W. Waldron and Eric Siegel reported recently, Baltimore City's elected officials also have been using public funds to play Santa Claus for local college students.For 126 years, the state's senators and delegates have handed out taxpayer-funded scholarships to constituents. This year alone, lawmakers have nearly $8 million to play with. In past years, all too many Maryland legislators have awarded scholarships to the children of friends, associates and campaign workers -- even to their own offspring.
NEWS
By PATRICK ERCOLANO | February 21, 1993
Not unlike Pavlov's dog responding to the clang of the dinner bell, I can't help getting a warm feeling whenever I hear the name of a certain Maryland politician.It's all because this pol -- let's call him Senator Pavlov -- gave me a few hundred dollars in state scholarship money each of the four years I attended a private Maryland university.Well, this dog is about to bite the hand that fed him.I have nothing against the good senator. I've never even met the guy. And certainly my parents and I appreciated the scholarship money.
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