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Mooney chided for question on bill

February 02, 2000

ANNAPOLIS - Sen. Alex X. Mooney was scolded Wednesday for questioning a proposal to require in-line skaters to wear bike helmets.

Shortly after Judicial Proceedings Committee Chairman Sen. Walter Baker told committee members they were asking too many questions, Mooney, R-Frederick/Washington, asked if the bill included ice skaters.

"It don't include that, Senator," Baker said loudly. "I want this committee to start reading the bills. This is a one-page bill."

Mooney was quiet and later had no comment about the exchange.

Mooney said he has serious reservations about requiring helmets for in-line skaters.

"Why don't we mandate helmets for walking up and down the stairs?" he said, noting that a friend of his was permanently disabled in a fall down the stairs.

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Supporters argued that the law would warn people about the dangers.

"We can't start creating laws to regulate that stuff. Laws are not just for sending messages. If you want to send a message, do a media release," he said.

- Laura Ernde

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