BALTIMORE (AP) - Maryland's governor says a state jail in Baltimore will no longer automatically comply with federal requests to hold immigrants past their release date for possible deportation.
Gov. Martin O'Malley says the Baltimore City Detention Center will now consider the severity of the charges a person is facing when reviewing U.S. Immigration and Customs and Enforcement requests to hold immigrants through the "Secure Communities" program. O'Malley notified Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson of the change in a letter released last week.
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Republicans in the governor's race agree the state government is essentially a business and the top administrator is an executive.
During a formal debate Thursday evening at Johns Hopkins University, the Republicans' fifth since January, they repeatedly accused Gov. Martin O'Malley's administration of making Maryland unfriendly to investors.
Ronald George and Charles Lollar both touted their business experience as a credential for leading the state. David Craig compared his position as Harford County Executive to managing an enormous business.
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Gov. Martin O'Malley says he still has misgivings about a bill to set a 13-month moratorium on the development of tall wind turbines within 56 miles of the U.S. Naval Air Station Patuxent River base in southern Maryland.
O'Malley wouldn't say Monday if he would veto legislation that has been sent to his desk. But the governor, who is a strong supporter of wind energy, says, "I have yet to conclude that windmills are quite the threat to Naval air radar that those advocating for this ban have concluded."
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Maryland's legislature has given final approval to a bill that would eliminate criminal charges for possessing small amounts of marijuana and the governor says he plants to sign it.
The Senate voted Monday to accept several compromises the House added over the weekend.
The bill would keep marijuana use illegal but make it akin to a traffic violation. The House opted to require all teen offenders to be evaluated for treatment. It also voted to raise the penalties to $20 for a second offense and $500 for a third offense, up from a maximum of $100.
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Gov. Martin O'Malley says he plans to work on overhauling Maryland's bail hearing system, after a bill that would have done so stalled in the Legislature.
O'Malley told reporters Monday that he will work with stakeholders who supported the overhaul approach backed by Sen. Brian Frosh.
That would use data on each defendant, such as criminal history, to assess the person's risk of committing more crimes if they were released from jail. Low-risk defendants would be released automatically.
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - A $4.3 million expansion of pre-kindergarten has been approved by the Maryland General Assembly.
The Senate voted 46-1 for the bill Friday.
The measure now goes to Gov. Martin O'Malley, who proposed the bill. It will enroll an additional 1,600 children around the state for children whose families make up to 300 percent of the federal poverty guidelines.
It also creates a pre-K expansion fund for business and philanthropic entities to contribute money to support future expansion.
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - People with developmental disabilities are urging the governor's office and Sen. Thomas Middleton to give their caregivers a raise at the same time they raise Maryland's general minimum wage.
More than 200 disabled residents and caregivers came to Annapolis Wednesday afternoon to give the measure an extra push. After crowding the meeting room of the Senate Finance Committee, a small delegation met with the governor's chief of staff.
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - A workgroup from Maryland's Senate Finance Committee is set to take up its minimum wage bill.
The measure would increase the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour by the 2016 fiscal year. The House passed a similar bill on March 7, but in the House's version, the rate wouldn't reach $10.10 until the beginning of 2017, and in the future it would not be tied to inflation.
The Senate committee is still working with the version proposed by Gov. Martin O'Malley and could make its own modifications.
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The Maryland Senate is scheduled to consider proposed changes to the state budget.
Last week, a Senate budget panel decided to address a downward revision in revenues by tapping into money set aside to shore up the state's pension system in a long-term plan. The Senate is expected to consider the changes Wednesday.
BALTIMORE (AP) - Maryland utility regulators say the high cost of heating homes and businesses during this long, cold winter may put more customers at risk of being shut off after March 31.
The Public Service Commission is asking utility companies at a legislative-style hearing Friday in Baltimore to explain their policies and procedures for terminating service to customers who haven't paid their bills on time.
The commission says it also wants to know the number of current and projected customers in arrears.
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The Maryland Board of Public Works has approved a contract modification of up to $2 million due to technical problems with the state's health care exchange.
The board approved the emergency modification 3-0 Wednesday. However, Comptroller Peter Franchot criticized the procurement process. Franchot says more than $160 million in contracts should have come before the Board of Public Works for greater scrutiny, instead of a separate health exchange board.
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Maryland is already moving toward a "two-tier" minimum wage system, where counties will set their own minimums. But Gov. Martin O'Malley says he wants $10.10 to be the statewide minimum and let counties raise it from there.
O'Malley was arguing for the wage increase Monday before the Senate Finance Committee.
He said $10.10 is "pretty modest," considering the effects of inflation since 1968. The minimum wage that year would be $10.70 in today's economy, according to one measurement of inflation. Another puts it at $9.50.
Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley says he will veto the chicken tax.
That’s a 5-cent per bird tax being proposed in the state legislature.
The Democrat made his remarks during the annual Taste of Maryland dinner and were reported on Twitter by the Maryland Department of Agriculture.
The Salisbury Daily Times reports that his press secretary Nina Smith issued a statement saying that the governor did not feel the chicken tax would actually strike a balance between the needs of the bay and the needs of the agriculture industry.
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Gov. Martin O'Malley says he is preparing for a possible run for president.
The Maryland Democrat tells The Washington Post that he can't waste time waiting for Hillary Rodham Clinton to decide whether she will run in 2016. He says he needs to get started on the groundwork for a national campaign.
On Friday, O'Malley reported raising nearly $1.7 million last year with his political action committee, O' Say Can You See.
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Supporters of a higher minimum wage plan to rally in Annapolis, but business owner Mark Pringle says higher wages would mean higher prices at his ice cream shops.
Pringle owns four Cold Stone Creamery shops. He tells The Capital that most of his 15 to 20 employees are either in high school or starting community college. Most make the state's current minimum wage of $7.25 per hour.
Gov. Martin O'Malley has proposed raising the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour by 2016.
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - A measure to help people get health insurance retroactive to Jan. 1, if problems with a state website kept them from doing so will be taking effect.
Gov. Martin O'Malley signed emergency legislation on Thursday in Annapolis to put it into effect immediately.
The measure will enable people who couldn't get through to enroll in Maryland health exchange insurance to be insured by the Maryland Health Insurance Plan. The program is a separate safety net plan that has served as a high-risk pool for state residents without insurance.
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The Maryland Senate has given final approval to a bill to help people who could not enroll in a private health plan on Maryland's health exchange website due to computer problems last year.
The Senate voted 34-7 on Wednesday to agree with changes made by the House.
The change requires the Maryland Health Insurance Plan to report to legislative panels about how enrollment is going for people who sought coverage for Jan. 1 but couldn't get through the website in time.