From Del. Rick Impallaria:
Annapolis Update #5 — February 21, 2012
As you probably know by now, the gay marriage bill has passed the House and is going on to the Senate. There is no telling what will happen on the Senate side, but I do believe it will pass. On the House side, the bill did get two amendments – one that would prevent the law from going into effect until after the referendum process and vote by citizens has taken place. The second amendment provides that if there are any legal challenges to the bill, the bill will not go into effect until the challenges have been exhausted, and if any part of the bill is found to be unconstitutional, the bill will be struck. That doesn’t mean that the courts couldn’t decide that both of those amendments did not withstand Constitutional challenges. There is a question on the number of votes that the bill passed by. On the night that it passed, the tote board said 71, which could be seen on all the news stations. But it was reported to have passed by 72 votes. I have never seen this happen in my 10 years here, so due to this discrepancy (also a first time in my 10 years), we could not access the minutes from the previous day, which is the record of the vote. Oh, what games they play! As soon as the referendum is in place, I will shoot you an e-mail and explain all the rules and the websites where you can sign on-line, or where to go in person, and I believe these signatures will be collected even faster than the signatures opposing the in-state tuition for illegals were collected. Gay marriage has gone on the ballot in 31 other states, and has failed in all 31.
Also, I have introduced two additional bills – one for gaming in American Legion and VFW organizations in Baltimore and Harford County, giving them the same rights as the Eastern Shore has, to have slot machines to help their charitable donations and to aid in maintaining upkeep on their property. The second bill is to stop pedophiles from voting in polling places, and was heard in the Ways and Means Committee. The bill was opposed by 5 members of the pro-pedophile lobby. Can you believe that?
There was a hearing in the Judiciary Committee on my bill regarding failure to report abuse of children, and that bill was supported by child welfare advocates noting that Maryland is one of three states that do not have a law in effect requiring the reporting of abuse of children to proper authorities.
On a positive note, it appears that the County Executive is working very closely with the Essex Sky Park to allow a long-term lease for the purchase of the property by the non-profit that is currently operating it, which will ensure the on-going operations and needed improvements to the facility.
Today, I had a hearing in the Judiciary Committee on the “shall issue” bill which will give Marylanders the right to carry a concealed weapon and would remove the almost impossible hurdle of the State Police requirement of a “clear and convincing purpose for carrying a hand gun.” The bill hearing had over 100 supporters and has co-sponsors that are both Democrats and Republicans. If you are interested in this subject, call the House Judiciary Committee (410-841-3488) and lobby for the passage of this bill.
Delegate Rick Impallaria, District 7