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Annapolis notes for 2-10-03

Mooney's stolen car is returned

Mooney's stolen car is returned

February 10, 2003|by LAURA ERNDE

Sen. Alex X. Mooney got his stolen car back, but now he doesn't want to keep it.

"I don't feel like it's my car anymore. It's been violated," he said.

Not only did the alleged car thief get caught on camera running two red lights (as evidenced by the tickets Mooney received in the mail), but he crashed Mooney's 1999 Saturn.

The car isn't a total loss, but Mooney, R-Frederick/Washington, plans to have it repaired so he can sell it and buy something else.




Wivell a surprise guest at delegation meeting


Hagerstown Mayor William M. Breichner introduced a surprise guest at last week's Washington County Delegation meeting.

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As he was announcing the city staff members who joined him around the meeting table, Breichner got to Washington County Commissioner William Wivell.

"Am I working for the city today?" asked a coy Wivell, who was clearly there to protect the county's interest in the proceeds from a proposed real estate transfer tax.

"That's what we're hoping for," the mayor quickly quipped. "I'm glad you picked up on that. Very perceptive."




Medicinal marijuana bill finds support locally


The Maryland General Assembly is looking at legalizing marijuana for medical use this year and so far one local lawmaker has agreed to co-sponsor the legislation.

Del. Richard Weldon, R-Frederick/Washington, said he was convinced by the cancer death of his uncle, Albert Brown.

Weldon watched the tall and strapping former football player and Coast Guardsman shrink to 72 pounds because he had no appetite.

"Once this disease touches your family, you would do anything in your power to make their last days more comfortable," he said. "The pool of potential supporters grows every day as this horrible disease ravages our population."




Cigarette smuggling on the rise in Maryland


Now that Maryland has raised its cigarette tax to $1 per pack, the state has become more attractive for cigarette smuggling, a legislative analyst told state lawmakers last week.

Halfway into the budget year, the comptroller's office has made 74 smuggling arrests, the same amount made the entire previous budget year, the analyst told a House budget subcommittee.

As a side note, the analyst said cigarette smuggling is an increasingly popular way for terrorist groups to finance their operations.

The comptroller's office gave the FBI the names of more than 200 cigarette smugglers last year.

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