ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Some of Maryland's judges are proposing the state reduce the number of steps in the bail-setting process.
A judiciary task force recommended on Wednesday that the state bundle two separate bail hearings into a single conference before a judge. That would eliminate the role of court commissioners who currently assign initial bail.
HAGERSTOWN, Md. (AP) - The state of Maryland faces a second challenge to a gun-control law set to take effect Tuesday.
On Friday, a collection of gun shops, firearm associations and people with pending handgun permit applications filed the complaint in U.S. District Court in Baltimore. They're challenging a provision requiring prospective buyers to submit their fingerprints to obtain a handgun qualification license.
OXON HILL, Md. (AP) - The onslaught of ads over gambling expansion has been like no other in a Maryland political year.
Gambling companies have spent more than $50 million so far for and against the question of allowing table games such as blackjack and a casino near the nation's capital. That's compared with the $34 million campaigns spent in the 2006 Maryland governor's race - previously the most expensive in state history.
BALTIMORE (AP) - Shoppers in Maryland are taking advantage of the state's week long sales tax holiday.
Through Saturday, purchases of qualifying clothes and shoes for $100 or less are exempt from the state's 6 percent sales tax. The sales tax holiday is meant to encourage families to do their back-to-school shopping at Maryland stores.
On Sunday, the first day of the holiday, shoppers arrived at state malls and other retail outlets in large numbers.
In past years, Maryland retailers have reported a jump in sales during the tax holiday.
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Maryland lawmakers and casino owners are reviewing Gov. Martin O'Malley's 55-page measure to expand gambling on the eve of a special session.
O'Malley, for his part, said Wednesday the bill will increase state revenue and jobs. He also says he's "so sick of this issue" and wants to settle it. The Senate wil convene the special session Thursday.
The gambling proposals would allow table games like blackjack and a new casino site in Prince George's County that could open in 2016.
BALTIMORE (AP) - More than half of Maryland is in a moderate drought and more than 28 percent is in a severe drought.
That's according to figures from the U.S. Drought Monitor. The figures show 51.45 percent of the state in moderate drought, down from 52.44 percent the week before. And 28.55 percent of the state is in severe drought, up sharply from 19.93 percent the week before.
The most severely affected areas are on the lower Eastern Shore and southern Maryland with the least affected areas along the Pennsylvania border in central Maryland.
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - A work group of lawmakers and aides to Gov. Martin O'Malley that is studying a potential expansion of gambling in Maryland is scheduled to hear from analysts who have been looking at the proposals.
The meeting is set for Tuesday in Annapolis.
Lawmakers will hear from analysts from PricewaterhouseCoopers. They'll talk about their findings on a potential gambling expansion.
O'Malley has said he will call a special session next month to take up the expansion, if lawmakers can reach a consensus on how to do that.
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Republican presidential candidates are vying for 37 delegates in Maryland's primary, with Mitt Romney expected to fare well in a state that's home to many moderate GOP members.
Candidates have been making campaign appearances in the state in advance of Tuesday's primary. Maryland is getting a rare moment in the Republican spotlight because of a nominating contest that has extended into April.
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Far fewer taxpayers would be affected by an income tax increase under a House panel's plan then one approved by the state Senate.
The House Ways and Means Committee on Monday voted to raise taxes on single filers who make more than $100,000. Their rate would go from 4.75 percent to 5 percent. Joint filers would have to earn more than $150,000 for their rate to go up that much.
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Maryland is paying more than double for each slot machine that officials acquired to fill the state's first three casinos.
An analysis by The Washington Post found the state is paying about $10,000 per machine per year. At the current rate, the paper says the state could spend $50 million a year more than projected by the time all five privately owned casinos are open.
Maryland has become the eighth state to legalize same sex marriage.
Yesterday afternoon Governor Martin O’Malley signed the legislation which will go into effect next January. But before that, opponents are expected to gather the 56-thousand signatures needed to put the law to a referendum on the November ballot to give voters the final decision.
Much of that opposition is expected to come from African American pastors and the Catholic Church.
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The Maryland Senate is delaying debate on a bill to legalize gay marriage.
Republican leaders asked that discussion of the bill and potential amendments be postponed until Thursday.
Sen. President Thomas V. Mike Miller said the Senate could gather into the evening that day to consider the bill, which barely passed the House of Delegates last week. Debate could continue Friday before a final vote is taken.
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - A Senate committee will hold a hearing on a measure to expand gambling in Maryland.
The Senate Budget and Taxation Committee is scheduled to discuss the bill that would pave the way for table games like blackjack. The measure also would allow a casino to be built in Prince George's County.
Even if General Assembly approves, Maryland voters would have a say on table games and a new casino location in a statewide referendum.
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Maryland agriculture and environmental officials are opposing a bill to prohibit additional bay restoration regulations on farmers until other states in the watershed catch up to their pollution reductions.
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Maryland lawmakers are still waiting for the big payout from the Legislature's gamble more than four years ago on legalized slot machines.
To truly hit the jackpot, some lawmakers believe the state must expand state-approved gambling further. They say table games and a Washington-area casino are needed to compete with neighboring states and generate the dollars needed for education and other needs. Much of the competition comes from venues in Delaware, West Virginia and Pennsylvania.