Browsing the "Michael Smigiel" Tag

Advocates of therapist abuse bill call for removal of professional board

June 2nd, 2013 | by Len Lazarick

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.


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

April 1st, 2013 | by Len Lazarick

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


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

February 5th, 2013 | by Len Lazarick

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


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

February 3rd, 2013 | by Len Lazarick

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.”


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

August 22nd, 2012 | by Len Lazarick

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.


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

June 29th, 2012 | by Len Lazarick

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


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

March 29th, 2012 | by Len Lazarick

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.



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