June 30 – New Laws on the Holiday Weekend

On November 16, I emailed this message to Robyn Elliot, Planned Parenthood’s lobbyist.

“I’ve just started to think about what we could do in Md. if federal government defunds Planned Parenthood. We should talk.”

Several of my colleagues joined that conversation.

The result was House Bill 1083, requiring our state government to pay for those health services that the federal government would no longer be funding if provided by Planned Parenthood. Abortions are not paid for under current federal law or our legislation.

Only two Republican members of the House of Delegates or the State Senate voted for HB 1083. In 1991, when we protected a woman’s right to choose by writing the principles of Roe v. Wade into Maryland law, approximately two dozen Republicans voted for the bill.

The Republican health care bill awaiting action by the U.S. Senate would defund Planned Parenthood for one year.

HB 1083 takes effect tomorrow.

Over the last weekend in April last year, three adult males were murdered within one block of 4Gs, a problem liquor store at Liberty Heights and Gwynn Oak Avenues.

The Howard Park community was justifiably upset.

A few days later at a community meeting, my 41st District colleagues and I pledged to draft legislation to limit the hours of the 4Gs liquor store. Under the existing law, it could stay open from 6 a.m. to 2 a.m.

House Bill 1036 limited its hours of operation to 9 am to 9 pm. We amended the bill to limit all liquor licenses in the Liberty Heights corridor to those 12 hours.

Our bill passed at 11:48 pm on the last night of the 90-day legislative session.

HB 1036 takes effect tomorrow.

PS We have already requested that a bill be drafted to impose a similar limit on the hours of operation for liquor stores in the Park Heights area.