Lawmakers Kick Off the 2014 Maryland General Assembly Session

Lawmakers Kick Off the 2014 Maryland General Assembly Session

"Nobody wants to irritate somebody, so you don't put things in that are going to be controversial. You won't see too many of those bills this year," says Senator George Edwards.

ANNAPOLIS, Md. - The 2014 session of Maryland General Assembly began Wednesday and lawmakers are already shifting things into high gear.

An energetic Maryland General Assembly greeted Governor Martin O'Malley for the first day of the session. Western Maryland lawmakers already have some ideas on what the hot issues will be, although they think it may be less heated since this is an election year.

"Nobody wants to irritate somebody, so you don't put things in that are going to be controversial.  You won't see too many of those bills this year," says Senator George Edwards.

The General Assembly is expected to consider legalizing marijuana.

"I think we could save a lot of money on jails and police forces if we regulate it and taxed it," says Senator Ron Young.

"Marijuana does lead to heavier kinds of drugs if you use it on a regular kind of basis. A lot of people move into heavier kinds of drugs, crack cocaine, heroin, those kinds of things," adds Senator Edwards.

Another one of the big issues in Annapolis is expected to be increasing the minimum wage. Most of Western Maryland lawmakers are against it. Senator Young says he will support it because he thinks it is hard to live on $7.25 per hour.

"That's less than $1,300 a month and most places after deductions, you can't rent anything more than a hole in the wall," adds Senator Young.

Senator Brinkley says he will be opposing the minimum wage increase. Instead, he believes the issue should come at the federal level so there is uniformity.

Western Maryland lawmakers have already filed some bills. Senator Edwards will introduce a bill to raise the speed limit on state highways to 70 miles per house. Senator Young is sponsoring a bill to lower the interest rate for people who are buying a zero-energy home.

The Frederick County delegation will meet for the first time Friday in Annapolis and begin debating the county's six bills.



 



 



 



 



 



 



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