Advocates of therapist abuse bill call for removal of professional board

June 2, 2013

After an unsuccessful bid to criminalize the sexual abuse of patients by their therapists, supporters of Lynette’s Law are demanding the removal of some key members on the Board of Professional Therapists and Counselors (BOPC) -- their biggest opponents in last session’s bill hearings. [...more]

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Lynette’s Law supporters disappointed therapy abuse will not become crime

April 9, 2013

After a difficult few months of fighting to pass Lynette’s Law -- a bill to prohibit sexual abuse by therapists -- Heather Lynette Sinclair and bill co-sponsors got less than half of what they wanted. [...more]

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Making sexual abuse by therapists a crime is one woman’s crusade

April 1, 2013

A bill seeking to make the abuse of patients by their therapists a crime has brought together an unlikely team of legislators and a young woman who could have never imagined herself so immersed in state legislation, coined “Lynette’s Law,” HB 60. Heather Lynette Sinclair, 27, turned to Maryland lawmakers in hope that she might be able to end an invisible chain of abuse within the mental health field. [...more]

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Tax breaks for textbooks offered as way to hold down college costs

February 5, 2013

With the cost of college tuition and textbooks on the rise, legislators are proposing sales tax breaks on textbooks in hopes of providing financial relief to students. House Ways and Means Committee Chair Sheila Hixson and Del. Michael Smigiel advocated different versions of textbook tax breaks before her committee Tuesday. Smigiel, R-Cecil, outlined a plan for year-round tax exemption on textbooks, while Hixson proposed setting a limited time period during which students can purchase their books tax-free. [...more]

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Pro-gun legislators challenge O’Malley’s gun control proposal

February 3, 2013

With the first hearing on Gov. Martin O’Malley’s gun control package set for a Senate hearing Wednesday, pro-gun legislators are loading up their arguments against the proposals. The lawmakers said that O’Malley’s proposed gun-licensing fees in SB281 could exceed $400 per person, bringing the dawn of a new era when “only rich people could afford guns.” [...more]

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Miller in command: A ‘Dear John’ phone call and counting the days

August 22, 2012

No one doubts that this month’s special session of the General Assembly to expand gaming wouldn’t have happened without the insistence and persistence of Senate President Mike Miller, who’s been pushing slots and gambling for a decade. A few loose ends from the session point out Miller’s command of the process and close attention to every stray vote. [...more]

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Reaction to Supreme Court decision on health care includes victory dances and calls for repeal

June 29, 2012

The torrent of comment on the Supreme Court decision to uphold most of the Affordable Care Act fell predictably along party and ideological lines: Democrats and progressives were exulting; Republicans and conservatives were disgusted, except for the ruling that the individual mandate was a tax. It will take several days to digest the full implications, but here are lightly edited versions of over two dozen Maryland reactions. [...more]

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House passes septic bill, rural lawmakers make last stand

April 6, 2012

Floor debate in the House over the administration’s signature land preservation bill invoked common themes from Republicans about growing state control over rural and agricultural land, but the bill passed with a vote of 93-45. [...more]

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State moves forward with health care program as Supreme Court questions federal law

March 29, 2012

As the U.S. Supreme Court heard its third and final day of arguments Wednesday on the constitutionality of President Barack Obama’s health care law, Maryland plunged ahead in preparing the state for the law’s implementation. Despite concerns that the 2010 Affordable Care Act could be overturned by the Supreme Court, both chambers of the General Assembly have approved bills backed by Gov. Martin O’Malley that lay the groundwork for the execution of the federal law on the state level. [...more]

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Podcast: Supporters of gay marriage celebrate, opponents predict voters will reject law

February 18, 2012

In this podcast by reporter Duane Keenan, we hear reactions to the passage of the same-sex marriage bill in the House of Delegates from legislators Luke Clippinger, Heather Mizeur, Pat McDonough, Justin Ready, Michael Smigiel and Speaker Michael Busch. [...more]

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