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ABATE of Maryland, Inc.

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(Staff Meeting March 13, 2005)
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Helmet Law Bill (HB 450) Hearing Completed
(Update 16-Feb-2005)

Former Delegate George Owings who is now the Secretary of the Maryland Department of Veterans Affairs came into the committee room prior to the hearing commenced and exchanged pleasantries with some of the members in a show of support as well as to do some last minute lobbying. While he was a Delegate, we was always our primary sponsor in the House of Delegates and has a vested interest in the outcome of this bill because he is an avid motorcyclist.

Former Delegate Don Murphy also briefly attended the hearing, sitting in the front row with our ABATE members to show his support and make a silent statement to the committee.  A few years ago Mr. Murphy attended a campaign event for Senator Brinkley in Frederick, MD. After discussing the helmet law and motorcycles in general he and Senator Brinkley agreed to motorcycle rides. Both the riders and the first time passengers had a memorable ride.

There were over 40 riders in attendance and occupied nearly every seat in the committee room. Delegate Conway, the primary sponsor, began the testimony.

Bruce Bereano followed and gave a passionate presentation filled with statistics and in-depth information about the current law, the proposed law, difficulties with enforcement, and inadequacies in the helmet testing standard.  Others who testified included Gif Nichol, Kathleen Loerich, Marty Schultz, Lee from the Christian Motorcycle Association, Pappy, Pat Corcoran, Bill Bartos, and others.

There were three people testifying in opposition who chose to testify as a panel. There was a Dr from the George Washington University Medical Center, another doctor who used primarily information from National Highway Traffic Safety Administration publications, and a third woman who testifies each year whose testimony consisted mostly of references to the bill's fiscal note.

A few committee members questioned these folks on the content and validity of their testimony with Delegate Hogan and Delegate Cluster asking the most pointed questions.

We feel positive about the outcome of the hearing, but only time will tell when the committee votes on the bill. This should happen within one to two weeks.

An interesting aside is the fact that the Bill Room in the Legislative Services Building ran out of copies of HB 450. There were so many requests for the bill that their supply has been depleted.

So if you haven't already contacted the members of the committee and your representatives in the House of Delegates, now is the time to do so. It is crucial to obtain a positive committee vote so we can advance the bill for a full floor vote in the House.

Bill updates can be located via this link: http://mlis.state.md.us/2005rs/billfile/hb0450.htm 

Locate Delegates by County via this link: http://www.mdarchives.state.md.us/msa/mdmanual/07leg/html/gaco.html

Members of the Environmental Matters Committee are listed below.

Maggie L.McIntosh, Chair (410) 841-3990, (301) 858-3990,
e-mail: maggie_mcintosh@house.state.md.us  (Baltimore City)

James E. Malone, Jr., Vice-Chair (410) 841-3378, (301) 858-3378,
e-mail: james_malone@house.state.md.us  (Baltimore & Howard)

Rudolph C. Cane (Sponsor), (410) 841-3427, (301) 858-3427,
e-mail: rudolph_cane@house.state.md.us  (Dorchester & Wicomico)

John W. E. Cluster, Jr. (Sponsor), (410) 841-3365, (301) 848-3365,
e-mail: john_cluster@house.state.md.us  (Baltimore)

Barry Glassman (Sponsor), (410) 841-3289, (301) 858-3289,
e-mail: barry_glassman@house.state.md.us (Harford)

Patrick N. Hogan (Sponsor), (410) 841-3240, (301) 858-3240,
e-mail: patrick_n_hogan@house.state.md.us  (Frederick)

J. B. Jennings (Sponsor), (410) 841-3334, (301) 858-3334,
e-mail: jb_jennings@house.state.md.us  (Baltimore & Harford)

Tony McConkey (Sponsor), (410) 841-3223, (301) 858-3223,
e-mail: tony_mcconkey@house.state.md.us (Anne Arundel)

Rosetta C. Parker (Sponsor), (410) 841-3326, (301) 858-3326,
e-mail: rosetta_parker@house.state.md.us  (Prince George’s)

Richard A. Sossi (Sponsor), (410) 841-3543, (301) 858-3543,
e-mail: richard_sossi@house.state.md.us  (Caroline, Cecil, Kent, & Queen Anne’s)

Paul S. Stull (Sponsor), (410) 841-3107, (301) 858-3107,
e-mail: paul_stull@house.state.md.us  (Frederick)

Michael H. Weir, Jr. (Sponsor), (410) 841-3328, (301) 858-3328,
e-mail: michael_weir@house.state.md.us  (Baltimore)

John S. Arnick, (410) 841-3458, (301) 858-3458,
e-mail: john_arnick@house.state.md.us  (Baltimore)

Kumar P. Barve, (410) 841-3464, (301) 858-3464,
e-mail: kumar_barve@house.state.md.us  (Montgomery)

Elizabeth Bobo, (410) 841-3205, (301) 858-3205,
e-mail: elizabeth_bobo@house.state.md.us  (Howard)

Virginia P. Clagett, (410) 841-3211, (301) 858-3211,
e-mail: virginia_clagett@house.state.md.us  (Anne Arundel)

Barbara A. Frush, (410) 841-3114, (301) 858-3114,
e-mail: barbara_frush@house.state.md.us  (Anne Arundel & Prince George’s)

Tony E. Fulton, (410) 841-3030, (301) 858-3030,
e-mail: unavailable (Baltimore City)

Marvin E. Holmes, Jr., (410) 841-3098, (301) 858-3098,
e-mail: marvin_holmes@house.state.md.us (Prince George’s)

Karen S. Montgomery, (410) 841-3380, (301) 858-3380,
e-mail: karen_montgomery@house.state.md.us  (Montgomery)

Joan F. Stern, (410) 841-3045, (301) 858-3045,
e-mail: joan_stern@house.state.md.us  (Montgomery)

Contact your Delegates today and ask them to vote for HB 450. If your Delegate is one of the listed sponsors, contact them and thank them for supporting the bill.

Address letters to:
Lowe House Office Building
84 College Ave.
Annapolis, MD 21401

Obtain information about members of the House of Delegates via this link:
http://www.mdarchives.state.md.us/msa/mdmanual/06hse/html/hse.html 

Locate your legislators via this link:
http://mdelect.net/ 

Contact your legislators via this link:
http://www.mlis.state.md.us/cgi-win/mail32.exe 

ABATE of Maryland, Inc.
http://www.abate-of-maryland.org 
mdabate@erols.com 

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Newsletter Dates and Deadlines for 2005

Issue 1   Deadline  1/14/2005

To Printer 1/24/2005

Mailed out 2/4/2005

Issue 2   Deadline  3/18/2005

To Printer 3/28/2005

Mailed out  4/8/2005

Issue 3   Deadline  5/13/2005

To Printer 5/23/2005

Mailed out  6/3/2005

Issue 4   Deadline  7/15/2005

To Printer  7/25/2005

Mailed out  8/5/2005

Issue 5   Deadline  9/9/2005

To Printer  9/19/2005

Mailed out  10/1/2005

Issue 6   Deadline  11/8/2005

To Printer  11/28/2005

Mailed out  12/09/2005

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ABATE of Maryland Web Site Last Updated on 15 Jan 2005.