Today, the Judicial Proceedings Committee unanimously approved Senate Bill 68 – Sexual Offenses – Crime of Violence and Lifetime Supervision. This legislation is sponsored by Senator Bailey and is intended to help protect children from some of the most heinous crimes imaginable, specifically felony sexual assaults. This bill now goes to the full Senate for its consideration next week.
In addition, Senator Bailey introduced six more bills this week for consideration by the Senate.
Senate Bill 579 – Vehicle Equipment – Highway Maintenance and Service – Green Flashing Lights would authorize highway maintenance and service equipment and vehicles owned by the State or local governments to use green flashing lights simultaneously with yellow or amber flashing lights while in use. This bill was requested by the State Highway Administration and would give our State and local governments more options as they work to best protect Maryland’s highway maintenance workers.
Senate Bill 580 – Sewer Systems and Wastewater Treatment Plants – Water Pollution – Shellfish Harvester Restitution would require that the owner of a wastewater treatment plant that is responsible for a sewage spill, discharge, or overflow that results in an emergency order to close a waterway to shellfish harvesting pay restitution to the commercial harvest license holders who were affected by the closure order. This bill was drafted following the sewage leak that closed portions of the Potomac River around St. George’s Island to shellfish harvesting and is intended to protect commercial watermen in the event of future closures of this kind.
Senate Bill 581 – Public Safety – Law Enforcement Agencies – Positive Community Feedback would require police agencies to keep a record of positive feedback that the agencies receives about its officers and allows the release of that information under the Maryland Public Information Act. This would ensure that police departments and the public have access to the full picture of a law enforcement officer’s record.
Senate Bill 582 – Natural Resources – Recreation on Private Land – Hunting would provide protections for landowners who allow hunters to use their property for hunting by ensuring that these landowners are covered by Maryland’s recreational use statute.
Senate Bill 583 – Maryland Center for School Safety – Public Schools – Reporting of Classroom Disruptions would require the Maryland Center for School Safety to set up a website for anonymous reporting of public school classroom disruptions.
Senate Bill 673 – Natural Resources Police Force – Employees – Authority of Secretary would resolve an inconsistency in current State law and allow the Natural Resources Police force to be governed and managed similarly to how all other police forces are run in Maryland.
Charlotte Hall Update
This week, the Commissioners of St. Mary’s County approved a partnership between the County and the State of Maryland to provide and staff a dedicated ambulance for the Charlotte Hall Veterans Home. The ambulance will help ensure that the veterans who reside at the home continue to receive the best care possible. This will also benefit residents who are served by the Mechanicsville Volunteer Rescue Squad, as this ambulance will respond to calls from the Veterans Home that are currently being handled by the Rescue Squad. Senator Bailey was able to secure $200,000 in State funding for this project in last year’s budget, and is very happy to see this effort move forward.
Convention of States
This week, Senator Bailey had the opportunity to meet with a group of supporters of the Convention of States. Senator Bailey has signed on a co-sponsor to Senate Joint Resolution 8, which would add Maryland to the list of states calling for a convention to proposed amendments to the United States Constitution to limit federal power.