Politics

12:00pm

Fri April 3, 2015
Democratic Chairwoman Resigns

Maryland Democratic Party elects interim chair

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — The Maryland Democratic Party has elected an interim chair.

The party's executive committee on Thursday elected D. Bruce Poole as interim chairman. He succeeds Yvette Lewis, who announced last month that she was resigning to spend more time with family.

Poole, a lawyer, is a partner at Poole & Kane, P.A. in Hagerstown. From 1987 until 1999, he served as a member of the House of Delegates, including 3 years as House Majority Leader.

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11:53am

Fri April 3, 2015
Bail Attorneys

Md. lawmakers try late push on bail attorney requirement

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller is urging lawmakers to find a way to ease or stop the impact of a court ruling that requires poor defendants in criminal cases to have a lawyer at an initial bail review hearing.

Miller told senators during session Thursday that the 2012 ruling by the Court of Appeals is "a problem crying out for a solution."

Maryland now provides about $10 million in the state budget to help pay lawyers.

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4:21pm

Thu April 2, 2015
Death With Dignity

Right to die bill needs more consideration, sent for study

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — Lawmakers say a controversial bill that would give certain terminally ill people the ability to end their lives with a prescription drug needs more study.

The Richard E. Israel and Roger "Pip" Moyer Death With Dignity Act is likely headed for a summer work group.

Del. Shane Pendergrass, D-Howard, who proposed the legislation in the House, said she was not surprised at the public reaction — which included hours of emotional testimony — but said she had not known whether the bill would make it through the session.

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4:21pm

Thu April 2, 2015
Death Penalty

Delaware Senate passes bill to abolish death penalty

DOVER, Del. (AP) — The Delaware Senate has passed a bill to abolish the state's death penalty.

The legislation, approved by an 11-9 vote Thursday, mirrors a bill that passed the Senate in 2013 by only one vote before dying in a House committee.

The bill now goes to the House. Democratic Gov. Jack Markell has not said where he stands.

The legislation removes execution as a possible punishment for first-degree murder, leaving life in prison without the possibility of parole as the only sentence.

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4:18pm

Thu April 2, 2015
Budget-Maryland

Md. governor releases supplemental budget with tax relief

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan has released a supplemental budget that includes money for some tax-relief plans he is supporting.

The plan made public Thursday includes $5.2 million to provide tax relief on military pensions and relief for first responders. It also includes $7.4 million for personal property tax relief that would eliminate the tax for businesses that have less than $10,000 in personal property.

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