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Maryland Senate Progressives Assault on Police

Shootings and violence in Baltimore continue, we have a dire shortage of police officers, but next week Maryland Senate Progressives are putting forth a group of bills that will seek to further restrict law enforcement and their ability to engage in proactive policing under the guise of "reform". Maryland already passed significant police reform in 2016 - done in a bipartisan way with activist groups and law enforcement working together with state's attorneys and other groups for some common sense changes. But today, these progressives claim that Baltimore’s problem is still “systemic injustices in policing.” To publicize this anti-police agenda, the Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee is holding extraordinary, pre-session hearings next week on 14 bills. Only Democrats have bills before us and this is an unprecedented maneuver - actually having "bill hearings" while we are not in session. Below, my colleague on JPR, Senator Bob Cassilly, has posted a quick overview of what some of these bills would do if they became law:

- Create a legal presumption that any police use of physical force is unreasonable.

- Repeal the Law Enforcement Officer’s Bill of Rights. (From Senator Ready: Imagine the Democratic Party going after any other employee union's collective bargaining agreement through legislation! Would never happen.)

- Prohibit courts from allowing police to enter a building without knocking on the door, even when a court finds that doing so jeopardizes the lives of people in the building or the officers.

- Protect violent, armed attackers by prohibiting police departments from obtaining free, military surplus, bullet proof vehicles that police now use in hostage rescues missions. 

- Super size a statewide prosecutor to aggressively pursue alleged crimes by police officers while hardened criminals roam the streets of Baltimore with impunity.

- Place unlimited liability on local jurisdictions for police negligence, making it financially impossible for local jurisdictions operate police departments.

- Seek to publicly shame police officers with published lists of mere allegations of police misconduct.

- Transfer to a non-police board the power of the Sheriffs and Chiefs to determine administrative sanctions for police misconduct.

These hearings are a major departure from the Senate’s usual practice of dedicating summer hearings to bi-partisan studies and discussion of major issues.  I stand proudly with our police departments. Our Republican JPR members - and entire Republican caucus - are united in supporting our law enforcement. I've worked directly with our local law enforcement officials and all recognize that there are some areas where improvement can be made but it comes with better training - which we are already improving in the state - and with communities working WITH the police, not treating them as adversaries.

I will be sure to keep you posted on this as we move forward.

Let Us Play: High School Sports

I wanted to share a letter that the District 5 delegation sent to the Executive Director of Maryland Public Secondary Schools Athletic Association yesterday.  While rec sports have resumed, high schools are still not allowing athletes to play.  Sports are an important part of the high school experience and are especially important to those that hoping for a scholarship to continue their education. Of course I'm also supporting a return to the classroom for students - the Carroll County Board of Education has thankfully set a mid-October date for a potential return, I'm hopeful we can get things back to normal for all our kids.

 

2020 Election Information

  • All Carroll County voters will be mailed a postcard with information provided on our website in September.
  • All Carroll County voters will be mailed a sample ballot in late-September/early-October.
  •       In-Person Early Voting will be held from Monday, October 26-Monday, November 2 from 7am-8pm every day, including Saturday and Sunday. It will be located at the Westminster Senior Center and South Carroll Swim Club. See the “Early Voting” quick link under the “Voter Registration” tab at the top of this page.
  • Election Day is, of course, Tuesday, November 3 from 7am-8pm. A limited number of in person voting centers will be available. I am not pleased with the fact that it's fewer locations than normal. However, I wanted to be sure you know where to go. Voters in Carroll County can go to any of these sites to vote on Election Day.

Francis Scott Key High School

3825 Bark Hill Rd. Union Bridge, MD 21791

Liberty High School

5855 Bartholow Rd. Sykesville, MD 21784

Manchester Valley High School

3300 Maple Grove Rd. Manchester, MD 21102

Old New Windsor Community Room

1100 Green Valley Rd. New Windsor, MD 21776

North Carroll Middle School

2401 Hanover Pike, Hampstead, MD 21074

Parr’s Ridge Elementary School

202 Watersville Rd. Mt. Airy, MD 21771

Pleasant Valley Fire Hall

2030 S Pleasant Valley Rd. Westminster, MD 21158

Sandymount Elementary

2222 Old Westminster Pike Finksburg, MD 21048

South Carroll High School

1300 W Old Liberty Rd. Sykesville, MD 21784

South Carroll Swim Club

1900 W Liberty Rd. Westminster, MD 21157

Taneytown Elementary School

100 Kings Dr. Taneytown, MD 21787

Westminster Senior Center

125 Stoner Ave. Westminster, MD 21157

Winter’s Mill High School

560 Gorsuch Rd. Westminster, MD 21157

 

  • All voters should have also received a mail-in ballot application in late-August. If a voter sends an application for a mail-in ballot, they will not be eligible to vote a regular ballot in-person. They will be required to vote a provisional ballot. Ballots will be mailed in late-September. All applications and all ballots will be sent with a pre-paid postage envelope for easy return. If you want to vote this way but do not wish to return by mail, drop boxes will be available:
  •       Secure drop boxes for voted mail-in ballots will be available from October 1 through 8pm on Tuesday, November 3 every day, 24 hours a day. These drop boxes will be located at the following spots:

Board of Elections Office

300 S Center St. Westminster, MD 21157

Liberty High School

5855 Bartholow Rd. Sykesville, MD 21784

North Carroll Senior Center

2328 Hanover Pike Hampstead, MD 21074

Taneytown Police Station

120 E Baltimore St. Taneytown, MD 21787

South Carroll Swim Club

1900 W Liberty Rd. Westminster, MD 21157

Westminster Senior Center

125 Stoner Ave. Westminster, MD 21157

 My staff and I can be reached at  Justin.Ready@senate.state.md.us or by calling 410-841-3683. Both email and voicemail are checked regularly throughout the day. My team and I will do our best to get back to you as quickly as possible.