The session opened Wednesday with social and budget issues among lawmakers' top priorities.
Wednesday, January 9
By Lucas High, Capital News Service ANNAPOLIS—Gun control, the death penalty, transportation and environmental legislation were expected to be top priorities for state lawmakers as the Maryland General Assembly convened for its 433rd legislative session Wednesday in Annapolis. In the wake of the mass killings in Newtown, CT, in December, Gov. Martin O’Malley (D) plans to push for tighter firearm restrictions, including a ban on assault rifles and high-capacity magazines. Sen. Brian E. Frosh said there will be a reintroduction of a bill he sponsored last legislative session that prohibits the sale of guns with magazines of 10 rounds or more. “[The proposed bill] can protect people, save lives and it certainly does not infringe on Second …
O'Malley's bill applying the sales tax to gasoline has precedent, faces challenges.
Legislative leaders on Tuesday introduced Gov. Martin O’Malley’s proposal to apply the state’s 6 percent sales tax to gasoline. Dubbed the “Maryland Transportation Financing and Infrastructure Investment Act of 2012,” the legislation, which O’Malley (D) briefly previewed during his State of the State address on Feb. 1, calls for a three-year phase-in of the tax. The tax “will generate an additional $613 million in revenue to address Maryland’s urgent transportation infrastructure needs and support an estimated 7,500 jobs for Maryland families,” according to a news release from O’Malley’s office. Transportation infrastructure needs include roads, bridges and public transit projects. The proposal could be a tough sell, O’Malley himself …