UPDATED: Speed camera legislation fails
Just a day after it looked as if Maryland was poised to expand the use of speed cameras to zones around schools throughout the state, the Maryland Senate turned back the contentious plan by a single vote.
On Tuesday, the Senate gave preliminary approval to a speed camera expansion bill, unexpectedly adopting an amendment that broadened a narrow version that came out of a committee by allowing them within a half-mile radius of all schools. The schools amendment came from Sen. James Robey, a Howard County Democrat.
But on Wednesday, several senators reversed themselves -- when some of those who voted for the school-zone plan decided to vote against the final bill. The plan went down to a surprising defeat late Wednesday.
Speed cameras are currently authorized just in Montgomery County, under a pilot program. Gov. Martin O'Malley supports a statewide expansion.
The voting lists are in. Four lawmakers switched their votes between Tuesday and Wednesday. They include Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller, a master of the legislative process and an opponent of the cameras, and Sen. Ulysses Currie of Prince George's County, a committee chairman who often votes Miller's way. Both are Democrats. The other two: Sen. Bobby Zirkin, a Democrat; and Sen. Rich Colburn, a Republican:
Robey amendment to include school bills – Tuesday vote – 26 yes, 19 no, 2 absent
Miller, Colburn, Conway, Currie, Exum, Forehand, Frosh, Garagiola, Gladden, Harrington, Jones, Kasemeyer, Klausmeier, Kramer, Lenett, Madaleno, McFadden, Middleton, Muse, Peters, Pinsky, Pugh, Raskin, Robey, Rosapepe, Zirkin
Astle, Brinkley, Brochin, DeGrange, Della, Dyson, Edwards, Greenip, Haines, Harris, Kelley, King, Kittleman, Mooney, Munson, Pipkin, Simonaire, Stotzfus, Stone
Final passage of speed camera plan on Wednesday – 23 yes, 24 no
Conway, Exum, Forehand, Frosh, Garagiola, Gladden, Harrington, Jones, Kasemeyer, Klausmeier, Kramer, Lenett, Madaleno, McFadden, Middleton, Munson, Muse, Peters, Pinsky, Pugh, Raskin, Robey, Rosapepe
Miller, Astle, Brinkley, Brochin, Colburn, Currie, DeGrange, Della, Dyson, Edwards, Glassman, Greenip, Haines, Harris, Jacobs, Kelley, King, Kittleman, Mooney, Pipkin, Simonaire, Stoltzfus, Stone, Zirkin