State Roundup: Hundreds turn out to support, protest gun control proposals; House panel considers limits on police use of facial recognition technology

State Roundup: Hundreds turn out to support, protest gun control proposals; House panel considers limits on police use of facial recognition technology

Gun advocates rally near the Maryland State House protesting gun legislation on Tuesday, Feb. 7, 2023. (Michelle Larkin/Capital News Service)

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MORE THAN 300 TURN OUT TO TESTIFY ON GUN CONTROL BILLS: Bills to tighten up Maryland’s gun laws brought out protests and activists Tuesday as more than 300 people signed up to speak to five gun control proposals to put an age limit on rifle possession, create a voluntary registration system to keep guns from suicidal people and restrict where guns can be carried throughout the state. Michael Charles and Michelle Larki of Capital News Service/

  • “Who can and cannot access firearms is a fundamental life or death question,” Senate President Bill Ferguson said Tuesday in advance of the Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee meeting. Hannah Gaskill/The Baltimore Sun.
  • Opponents of the bills said they are eager for the bills to pass so they can challenge them in court. “It’s going to fail when I sue,” said Mark Pennak, an attorney whose group, Maryland Shall Issue, is challenging in U.S. District Court a Montgomery County law that bans gun possession within 100 yards of a “place of public assembly.” Bryan Sears/The Daily Record.
  • Jan Donohoe McNamara supports legislation to limit where people carry concealed firearms. Her brother, John McNamara, was among five people shot and killed at the Capital Gazette newspaper’s offices in June 2018. Cecil County Executive Danielle Hornberger (R) said the legislation attacks law-abiding citizens, infringes on the Second Amendment and would be unconstitutional. William Ford/Maryland Matters.
  • Many of those attending wore matching red T-shirts representing Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action, two groups that favor laws they believe will prevent gun violence. Also milling about were opponents of the bills clutching bright orange tote bags bearing the logo of the National Rifle Association. Pamela Wood/The Baltimore Banner.

CLIPPINGER PROPOSES CHANGES TO ‘CONCEAL CARRY’ LAWS: During hours of Senate testimony, the chairman of House Judiciary Committee was filing legislation limiting who would be prohibited from carrying a concealed weapon. In response to last June’s U.S. Supreme Court decision that struck down a law on carrying concealed guns in public, Del. Luke H. Clippinger (D-Baltimore City) is proposing changes to Maryland law to set out objective standards for so-called “concealed carry” prohibitions. William Zorzi/Maryland Matters.

HOUSE PANEL CONSIDERS REGULATING POLICE USE OF FACIAL RECOGNITION TECH: Police in Maryland would be barred from using facial recognition technology in certain circumstances under a bill lawmakers considered in a state House committee hearing Tuesday. The bill would be the first successful attempt to regulate the use of facial recognition technology for law enforcement at a statewide level in Maryland. Sam Janesch/The Baltimore Sun.

MEDIA REPS, ATTORNEYS ADDRESS BANNING COURT BROADCASTS: News media representatives, a prosecutor, defense attorneys and a victims’ rights advocate failed to find common ground Tuesday in the Maryland Judiciary’s effort to devise a rule that would permit official audio recordings of criminal trials to be broadcast while respecting the witnesses’ safety and dignity and the defendants’ due process rights. Steve Lash/The Daily Record.

CHARTER, CITY SCHOOLS CLASH OVER BLUEPRINT MONEY: Seven charter school operators are petitioning the Maryland State Board of Education to rewrite Baltimore City school system’s funding formula that includes a 25% administrative fee for distributing money tied to the Blueprint for Maryland’s Future. Lillian Reed/The Baltimore Sun.

MARYLANDERS ATTEND BIDEN’s STATE OF THE UNION: A Holocaust survivor from Rockville who sat in the first lady’s box on an invite from the White House and a host of local and state leaders – including Gov. Wes Moore — joined Maryland’s congressional delegation Tuesday night for President Joe Biden’s State of the Union address. Dan Belson/The Baltimore Sun.

TANEY BUST REMOVED FROM PUBLIC VIEW AT U.S. CAPITOL: Roger Taney of Maryland, the former chief justice of the United States behind an infamous proslavery ruling, has lost his place of honor in the U.S. Capitol. The marble bust of Taney has been permanently removed from the Old Senate Chamber. It was Taney who wrote the Supreme Court’s Dred Scott decision in 1857. The Taney bust will be replaced by the sculpture of the first African American on the Supreme Court, Marylander Thurgood Marshall. Dick Uliano/WTOP-FM.

HARFORD LEADERS CALL CASSILLY SCHOOL BOARD PICKS ‘EXTREMISTS:’ Harford County community leaders have raised concerns over Harford County Executive Bob Cassilly’s appointments to the Harford County Board of Education, calling them “extremists.” Jason Fontelieu/The Aegis.

CECIL BOE REMOVES PUBLIC COMMENT REQUIREMENT: The Cecil County Board of Education removed recent updates made to its “Public Participation Guidelines” after an attorney contacted Cecil County Public Schools Superintendent Jeffrey Lawson citing “prior restraint of free speech” policy and threatened litigation, according to a letter sent to the BOE. The guidelines required members of the public who wish to participate in the public participation section of board meetings to submit a written copy of their remarks 48 hours in advance. Matt Hubbard/The Cecil Whig.

HAGERSTOWN COUNCIL PICKS NEW MAYOR: Hagerstown City Councilwoman Tekesha Martinez has been selected as the city’s new mayor. The remaining members of the council unanimously selected Martinez as mayor during a special council meeting Tuesday afternoon. The council was tasked with selecting a new mayor after Gov. Wes Moore named former Mayor Emily Keller to be his special secretary for opioid response. Keller started in the position Feb. 1. Dave McMillion/The Hagerstown Herald-Mail.

MOTHER OF ACCUSED POWER GRID PLOTTER SAYS PRISON ESCALATED DAUGHTER’s EXTREMISM: Lanette Clendaniel, the mother of a Maryland woman accused of collaborating with a neo-Nazi to bring down a portion of the Maryland power grid, said that time her daughter, Sarah, spent behind bars escalated her extremism. Clendaniel says she was not shocked by the accusations against Sarah and expects her daughter to die in prison. Mike Hellgren/WJZ-TV News.

J6 FUNDRAISER GOES ONLINE: After a fundraiser for people arrested during the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol was rejected by a Towson bar, and its promotion at a Baltimore County hotel turned out to be false, the event was held online Tuesday night. Amanda Yeager/The Baltimore Sun.

About The Author

Cynthia Prairie

Contributing Editor Cynthia Prairie has been a newspaper editor since 1979, when she began working at The Raleigh Times. Since then, she has worked for The Baltimore News American, The Chicago Sun-Times, The Prince George’s Journal and Baltimore County newspapers in the Patuxent Publishing chain, including overseeing The Jeffersonian when it was a two-day a week business publication. Cynthia has won numerous state awards, including the Maryland State Bar Association’s Gavel Award. Besides compiling and editing the daily State Roundup, she runs her own online newspaper, The Chester Telegraph. If you have additional questions or comments contact Cynthia at:

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