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News Archive – AM 930 WFMD Online: Gun Bill Divides Legislative Delegation

June 16, 2011

Monday, January 17, 2011    Email article | Print article | RSS

The measure gives the local sheriff authority to approve handgun permits. A bill giving the local sheriff the authority to issue handgun permits has raised some concern among the Frederick County Legislative Delegation.   Delegate Michael Hough says he doesn’t like the idea of letting local counties and municipalities determine who should carry a handgun in their jurisdictions. “We may have local governments come in, once we open the door to let Frederick County to do something, we could have local governments in Frederick County, banning guns; or Montgomery County banning gun shows,” says Hough.

The current system gives the authority to the State Police to decide who should be issued a permit to carry a handgun. Hough says that system is broken. “There are a number of people out there who are denied a permit for no other reason that the state decides you can’t have one,” says Hough. “So I am in favor of right to carry.”

That’s something Frederick County State Senator Ron Young opposes. “I don’t want everybody on the street packing a gun, so to speak. I think there should be a need for it,” says Young.

He says he supports allowing the local sheriff having the authority to approve handgun permits for county residents. “A lot of it is a personality thing where people are hesitant about this sheriff,” Young says. “I don’t think you pass bills on personality. I’ve talked to the sheriff and I think he would administer it reasonably.”

The delegation is scheduled to discuss this bill further during Friday’s meeting. If local lawmakers approve it, it’s expected to face strong opposition in the Legislature.
This first full week of the 2011 Maryland General Assembly is usually a slow period, and it gives lawmakers an opportunity to get organized. Delegate Hough says he’s proposing a bill to help the business community by making state regulations more flexible. “That’s one thing in Maryland I heard on the campaign trail, talking to business owners, not only was the tax problem, but all the regulations they had to deal with from the state and local governments.” He’s also proposing a measure to outsource some of the work performed by state employees.

Senator Young says he’s working on a number of measures, which he’s not ready to announce yet. But he hopes to support legislation cracking down on human trafficking. “We have a great deal of problems in this state where children are brought in for prostitution, 12, 13 and 14 year olds,” he says. It also includes people from other countries, mostly women, who go into heavy debt to come to the US to work in massage parlors, brothels and even in restaurants. “They’re really kept in a situation where they almost never pay it off,” Young says.

News Archive – AM 930 WFMD Online.

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