A measure that would have legalized medically assisted suicide in Maryland was defeated on a dramatic tie vote in the state Senate. Sen. Will Smith, the bill’s sponsor, said he hoped senators will build on this year’s work on the bill as they debate the measure in future years.
Maryland’s senators have approved a bill that would ban polystyrene foam food containers and cups, starting next year. If the bill becomes law, Maryland would be the first with a statewide ban. Republicans raised concerns the ban would cause difficulty for farmers and small businesses.
A psychotherapist sued Maryland on Friday saying the ban on conversion therapy — a controversial practice that seeks to change gay people's sexual orientation — violates his First Amendment rights to free speech and practice of religion.
A House of Delegates member who argued against her father for a ban on conversion therapy for children has switched political parties. Delegate Meagan Simonaire switched from Republican to Democrat. She says she wants to be transparent with the constituents of her Anne Arundel County district.
Many of the hundreds of Maryland laws that take effect Monday extend protections for women. One explicitly bans using threats of shame or economic harm to coerce a person into having sex. Others address sexual assault, workplace harassment and the rights of female inmates.
Maryland became the 11th state to ban conversion therapy for LGBT youth on Tuesday as Gov. Larry Hogan signed legislation passed earlier this year. He gave one of the ceremonial bill-signing pens to Del. Meagan Simonaire, a Republican who came out as bisexual and urged colleagues to pass the bill.
As Maryland lawmakers voted to ban conversion therapy for minors, a state delegate revealed her parents pushed her toward the practice hoping it would "fix" her sexual orientation. Her father, a state senator, had argued against banning it. He called her revelation "much ado about nothing."
After a lengthy debate across a partisan divide, the Maryland Senate on Wednesday passed a bill that would make it illegal for licensed mental health professionals to offer therapy advertised to change one's sexual orientation or gender identity.
A law passed this session to end discrimination against lesbian couples seeking advanced fertility treatments in Maryland may have "inadvertently" introduced discrimination against straight couples, according to Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh.
Sixty-nine new senators and delegates have started learning the nuts and bolts of how to be one of Maryland's 188 part-time legislators, who give up their day jobs for 90 days to go to the state capital for an annual session that begins Jan. 14.
State officials said at a legislative briefing Thursday that their agencies must do more to flag financial mismanagement at group homes — problems similar to those that went unheeded at an Anne Arundel County facility where a 10-year-old died this month.
In Pasadena, Republican voters have a dizzying array of choices for state delegate this year. Six challengers are up against two incumbents in the two-delegate District 31B. Most of the challengers are gunning for one of those incumbents: Del. Don Dwyer Jr.
The Maryland House of Delegates will meet Saturday to vote on dozens of bills on the last weekend of the 2014 General Assembly session, including measures to decriminalize marijuana and ban grain alcohol.
The Senate gave preliminary approval Wednesday to a $38.9 billion state budget that includes no new taxes while giving state workers a 2 percent cost-of-living raise. It is slightly leaner than the governor proposed.
The Maryland Senate on Tuesday approved a bill that would prohibit discrimination against transgender people. The Fairness for All Marylanders Act, which passed the Senate 32 to 15, now goes to the House of Delegates.