dwyercommittee

The Gazette: Delegate Dwyer Sat in the Wrong Seat!

dwyercommitteeInstead of focusing on the legislation at hand in Judiciary Committee yesterday, the Capital Gazette felt the worthy news was where in the room I was seated.

Yesterday, I presented HB733- A bill which would require mandatory minimum sentence for all elected officials. I introduced this bill because members of the legislature,from both sides of the aisle and  including leadership have expressed support for holding public officials to a higher standard. I heard from the public who want elected officials willing to hold themselves to a higher standard. Though the bill has obvious Constitutional conflicts, as evidenced by this letter of opposition by the Maryland Judicial Conference, I was hopeful that it would pass based on the Legislators willingness to to be held to a higher standard of the law.

Tap here for the story in the Baltimore Sun

The Gazette also ran a story, but it seems that the only thing newsworthy was the fact that the Chairman invited me to sit among my colleagues.

Posted: Wednesday, February 26, 2014 4:24 pm | Updated: 9:44 am, Thu Feb 27, 2014.

It was just like old times.

There was Del. Don Dwyer, R-Pasadena, sitting with his old pals on the House Judiciary Committee, listening to testimony behind his “D. Dwyer” nametag.

As Dwyer waited to testify on a bill he introduced, he looked like a member of the Judiciary Committee.

Read the rest of the Gazette Article

There is no mention of the legislation at all, just a very kindergarten like complaint asserting that I sat in the wrong place and looked like I was… well a Delegate. I would have thought that the Gazette would be interested in the bill and where the lawmakers stand on it, but the Gazette is well known for simply attacking me, rather than focus on anything of substance, like my voting record.

I was grateful and honored to be invited to sit among my colleagues. I regret the effect that my personal issues have had on them and I am truly thankful for their kind treatment of me. While I was seated, I did not participate in hearings by asking any questions or or casting any votes.

Finally, I’d like to mention that I was surprised to have one supporter come to testify in favor. Megan Simonaire, the daughter of Senator Simonaire, who according to her website is a 20 something “lifelong conservative” said in committee that she was in favor of the bill, and then in actuality testified that the bill was so bad it needed an unknown amount of amendments to “make it good”. Megan is running to unseat me.

 

 

10th amendment

What is Nullification?

10th amendmentNullification under the “Doctrine of Interposition”, is very simply the Legislatures of the individual States voting to not comply with Unconstitutional Acts by the Federal Government. The bills I have introduced last session and this session are considered Nullification Legislation, by which the State of Maryland would refuse to comply with Federal “laws” for which the Federal Government has no Constitutional authority to impose. The legislation also prohibits the State to use and resources to assist the Federal Government in taking action against Maryland Citizens who are not complying with any Unconstitutional Federal Act.

For Example, HB 1010 – Hemp Freedom would nullify the federal prohibition of growing and selling hemp withing the borders of Maryland. It also protects farmers who do so by Maryland’s refusing to assist any entity of the Federal Government in pursuing punitive or legal action against them.

Legislation such as this is necessary in the pursuit of liberty and freedom. We have given the Federal Government power outside of the Constitutional limitations. The Tenth Amendment says that powers not granted to the federal government by the Constitution, nor prohibited to the States, are reserved to the States or the people.

Does the Constitution give the power to the Federal Government to prohibit the production and sale of Hemp? Does it give the Federal Government the authority to indefinitely detain Citizens without due process under the law? Does it give the Federal Government the authority to ban certain firearms or impose a national registry of lawful gun owners? Does it give the Federal Government the authority to ban the use of marijuana? Does the Constitution grant authority to mandate healthcare, or education standards? The answer of course is no, it does not. The best example of this is from our own history. In 1920 The Federal Government desired to ban alcohol. Having no Constitutional authority to do so, Congress had to pass a Constitutional Amendment in order to lawfully ban the sale and consumption of alcohol, the 18th Amendment to the US Constitution (Prohibition) once so amended, it became, Constitutionally, the law of the land and when the policy failed it took another amendment, the 21st Amendment to the US Constitution to repeal prohibition. To date, there are no Amendments to the Constitution giving authority to ban hemp, marijuana, firearms or types of firearms or to mandate the purchase of health care, or to adopt indefinite detention under legislation such as the National Defense Authorization Act.

The rightful remedy to the ever increasing over reach of the Federal Government is nullification, under the “Doctrine of Interposition” whereby the States interpose between its citizens and the unlawful reach of the Federal Government.

“…but where powers are assumed which have not been delegated, a nullification of the act is the rightful remedy: that without this right they would be under the dominion, absolute and unlimited, of whosoever might exercise this right of judgment for them”- Thomas Jefferson

Nullification is not an act whereby a state simply refuses to comply with a Federal law it does not like, it is the claim that the law is not a law at all because it is unconstitutional.

To read more about Nullification and Interposition

Nullification- Publius Huldahs Blog

Tenth Amendment Center

 

commoncore

I Oppose Common Core

commoncoreI oppose the common core standards that are now being imposed on students and families in Maryland. Common core is the new standardized public school curriculum proposed by the Federal Government. Based on the fact that the Federal Government has no authority to dictate or control school curriculum- this needs to be done at the local level, district by district based on the needs of the children. Currently, participation of states is voluntary, but the ultimate goal is for all states to adopt common core standards, giving the Federal Government unprecedented control over education, and effectively cutting parents out of the equation. Of course Maryland has already hopped on board.

At at recent presentation for common core, Dr. Jack Smith, representing the State Department of Education told the joint House and Senate Republican Caucus, that under common core standards, a student does not have to understand that 2+2 equals 4. The statement stunned me. Essentially, common core standards take into account the work that the student did to arrive at their answer, even if mathematically incorrect.

Common core also requires that by grade 12, students’ reading of classic literature is cut to 30% with 70% of the reading being informational text. This means that your child may not have the opportunity in school to read the works of Shakespeare, Salinger or Steinbeck.

There are serious concerns being raised by both parents and educators all over the country that believe that this curriculum may be detrimental to the education of America’s children.

There are a few bills being considered in Maryland during this Legislative Session.

HB 76 – Delegate Smigiel -Prohibition on the implementation of Common Core

The bill was heard in Ways and Means and awaits a vote. You can contact the members of Ways and Means if you support this bill.

HB764- Delegate McDonough- Prohibition on the implementation of Common Core

This bill has a hearing tomorrow in Ways and Means at 1pm

 

 

Further Information

Common Core Curriculum Framework

Guide to Common Core Standards

MD State Dept. of Education Common Core Resource Guide

Top 10 reasons to oppose common core Freedomworks Blog

What is Common Core 101

Breaking News! West Virginia Votes to Nullify Industrial Hemp Ban

hempfarmCHARLESTON, W.Va., February 24, 2014– As first reported by BenSwann.com last month, West Virginia legislators introduced legislation to nullify the federal ban on hemp. Earlier this afternoon the West Virginia State House voted to approve the bill which authorized the production, distribution and sale of industrial hemp within the state. The final vote was 88-8.

Industrial Hemp can be an economic boon and many states continue to recognize it. Call or email The Environmental Matters Committee in support  of my bill, HB 1010.
For more about industrial hemp

My Opposition to Local Bond Bills (Pork)- Even in an Election Year.

All local bond bills are essentially the pet projects of your local Legislators. Regretfully, every bond bill starts with the opening line, “Authorizing the Creation of a State Debt, not to exceed $xxx.xxx”

In the 12 years that I have represented District 31, the State Budget has increased almost 1 billion dollars per year, yet we still operate in a deficit condition. I cannot with a clear conscience vote for any bill that starts with the admission that it is a creation of state debt.

Many of these projects are worthwhile, however at a time of deficit, unfettered government spending is an affront to all citizens who year after year pay their taxes and continue to make do with less for their own families and needs.

Below I will highlight just some of the many bills introduced this year for feel good projects all around the state. There will be many many more which the public will never really see unless they look for them,. Keep in mind this is an election year, so the pressure is on to “bring home the bacon”.

Below are just a bakers dozen of the total bond bills introduced this year. The total dollar amount for just these 13 come to-$3,230,000.00

HB1470-$150,000 for Bestgate Park in Anne Arundel County

HB 901-  $200,000. for a monument to Sparrows Point Steel Mill in Baltimore County

HB750-  $200,000 for an HVAC system for a  Community Theater in Montgomery County

HB1095- $100,00 for an Indian Heritage Museum in Charles County

HB752- $300,00 for improvements of a YMCA in Wicomico County

HB1455-$130,00 for improvements to a Town Hall in Prince Georges County

HB1468 $250,000 for improvements to a Boys and Girls Club in Washington County

HB505 $100,000 for a playground in Prince Georges County

HB504 $500,00 for the Potomac Community Resource Home in Montgomery County

HB497 $150,000 for a skatepark in Baltimore City

HB470 $200,00 to build shaded structures for a playground in Howard County

HB267 $375,000 for a stormwater management project in Fredrick County

HB466 $575,000 for improvements to the Day Resource Center in Howard County

 

To see the list of all State Bond Bills tap here

HB 55- Exemption of Anne Arundel County from the Rain Tax Failed in Delegation

HB 55-Anne Arundel County Rain Tax Exemption Act of 2014)

This bill would have exempted Anne Arundel County from the rain tax requirement, but was unfortunately defeated in Delegation this morning, essentially killing the bill.

I voted for this bill and have always held the belief that in Anne Arundel County, the bulk of pollution comes from pumping station overflows and wastewater treatment plant discharges. As I posted earlier, my claim is not being contradicted by Maryland BayStat. 

You can see for yourself, using the interactive map and selecting Anne Arundel County, that BayStat reports wastewater treatment plants as the biggest source of pollution coming from our county- not stormwater runoff. In January of last year, a Federal Judge ruled that the EPA can not regulate stormwater as a pollutant.

The issue of stormwater runoff is an issue that needs to be addressed, however, to insist that it is the main cause of phosphorus and nitrogen pollution in the Bay is misleading to the public in order to place yet another onerous tax burden on the backs of the taxpayers. I find this to be unacceptable and will continue to support a repeal of this legislation.

To read my post on this tap here: The Real Pollution Problem in AA County

 

 

Update- Hemp Hearing

The Hearing for HB 1010 Industrial Hemp went well. I am very hopeful that this bill will continue to move and that Maryland may soon see an ecological as well as economical benefit as a result.

The Chairwoman of the Committee, Delegate Maggie McIntosh was supportive, stating that this is “an important issue that should be taken up this session”

I fielded some questions regarding the difference between Hemp and Marijuana (cannabis). Read more

Delegate Niemann  (D)spoke in support of Hemp as a “formidable agricultural product” and recollected that Hemp was grown as a cash crop in Nebraska where he grew up before the second World War.

 

I came across this interesting and recent article regarding hemp as a means to remove toxins from the soil.

Hemp test proposed for Louisville industrial site cleanup

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) – State agriculture officials announced plans to grow industrial hemp on an abandoned industrial site in Louisville to test its ability to remove toxins from the soil.

The initiative, announced Monday, is one of five pilot projects statewide, some of which would focus on growing hemp in Eastern Kentucky. Besides the environmental benefits, hemp supporters said the crop will create new jobs in the state because of its various industrial uses. Read Article

Further reading:

Hemp benefits and uses

Environmental Benefits of Hemp Report