|Last year the story of my friend, Mayor Cheye Calvo, received international attention after a SWAT team mistakenly raided his home. The Calvo's family dogs were shot during the incident, which shed light on the increasing militarization of local police and the failure to perform basic investigatory work. We passed a bill I co-sponsored HB1267 that will increase accountability by requiring local police organizations to report on their use of SWAT teams.
Governor O'Malley championed a bill to end the use of the death penalty in Maryland following a report by a Commission which studied the issue. The resulting bill we passed did not end capital punishment but limited the circumstances it which in can be used. We also passed the Governor's legislation to help keep guns out of the hands of domestic abusers.
|Government Reform and Transparency|
|Late in the session, Delegate Peņa-Melnyk and I introduced a bill to reform the Maryland Public Information Act. This important "sunshine law" has been on the books for many years but was written when most government records were on paper. My bill proposed to update this law to reflect the fact that many government records are now stored electronically. The federal government and many other states have already made this change.|
A bill I supported to institute Public Financing of Campaigns gained the support of the Senate President and advanced to the Senate floor for debate.
Another interesting development is the video recording of all House and Senate committee bill hearings. The system is still being tested but promises to enhance our legislative and democratic process.
|Protecting our Animal Friends|
|A bill to crack down on commercial "puppy mill" practices failed to pass. A local bill to ban the use of steel-jaw leghold and body gripping traps in Montgomery County passed the County Delegation and the full House but failed in a Senate committee at the end of the session. A bill to require the labeling of clothing containing fur passed the Senate but failed in the House Economic Matters Committee.|
|Empowering Local Communities|
|My bill to expand and improve the Enterprise Zone tax credit program to aid areas like Wheaton's commercial district, was heard but not voted on by the House Ways and Means Committee. I co-sponsored the Governor's bill to reauthorize the Maryland Heritage Tax credit program which passed the House but failed in the Senate.
Town of Kensington residents will gain more dining options within walking distance because of the passage of my bill to modify the restaurant district boundaries. Municipal authority to regulate commercial signs was confirmed by passage of another one of my bills. Finally, municipalities across the state gained the authority to more easily annex small parcels of property that straddle their boundaries by passage of my HB220.
My staff and I are already preparing for next year's session. Please let us know you have ideas or suggestions for legislation or if you would like me to meet with you or your group to discuss issues of concern.
Thank you again for keeping in touch. Working together, we can continue to improve the quality of life in our community.
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The Annapolis staff from left to right: Legislative Aide Kristin Fulkerson, Office Manager Fred Gundry, Delegate Carr, Intern David Davenport, Legacy Leader Ginny Goble
|High School Seniors and College Students May Apply for Delegate Carr's Scholarship|
Delegate Carr has state scholarship money available for local students. Students must be enrolled in a Maryland College or University (of if attending an out-of-state school, must be in a field of study not offered by a Maryland School).
Interested students must fill out a short application and write a brief letter detailing their accomplishments. Students must also have a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) on file. www.fafsa.ed.gov
The application deadline is May 30, 2009
. For more information, please contact Legislative Aide Kristin Fulkerson via phone on 301 858-3638 or via email at email@example.com