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Myers now on Appropriations Committee

January 04, 2007|by ANDREW SCHOTZ

WASHINGTON COUNTY - As he starts his second term, Del. LeRoy E. Myers Jr., R-Washington/Allegany, has switched committees, from Ways and Means to Appropriations.

Myers said House Speaker Michael E. Busch, D-Anne Arundel, called him Dec. 26 and asked him to serve on Appropriations, which oversees the state operating and capital budgets, bond authorizations and money allocations.

The Ways and Means Committee handles legislation connected to taxes, education, children and other topics.

George C. Edwards, R-Garrett/Allegany, had represented Western Maryland on Appropriations, but he won a seat in the state Senate in November.

Myers, who owns Myers Building Systems Inc. in Clear Spring, said he's well suited for Appropriations because of his business background and because he has served one term in the House.

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"It's going to be challenging and very rewarding," he said.

The Appropriations Committee now has 20 Democrats and six Republicans, said Del. Norman H. Conway, chairman of the committee.

For committees, the Speaker tries to keep a balance by party, geography, gender and ethnicity, said Conway, D-Wicomico/Worcester.

He said the Appropriations Committee had seven Republicans before. However, Republicans lost a total of eight House seats in November, he said.

Myers, whose first committee choice four years ago was Appropriations, said geography, not party, is the biggest factor when legislators fight for money for their districts.

On the Appropriations Committee, he sees himself more as an advocate for Western Maryland than a Republican in the minority, he said.

Galen R. Clagett, D-Frederick, also serves on the committee.

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