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Local bills signed Thursday

May 18, 2007|by ANDREW SCHOTZ

Four bills with Washington County sponsors were among those Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley signed into law Thursday.

· Del. Christopher B. Shank, R-Washington, was the House sponsor of a bill known as "Jessica's Law." It imposes mandatory minimum sentences for adults committing certain sex offenses against children, eliminating the possibility of parole.

· Sen. Donald F. Munson, R-Washington, sponsored a bill requiring that a petition for an emergency evaluation be confidential.

· A bill sponsored by Del. John P. Donoghue, D-Washington, secured up to $425,000 for the Maryland Medbank Program, which supplies prescription drugs to people who cannot afford them.

· Del. Richard B. Weldon Jr., R-Frederick/Washington, sponsored a bill making slight changes to the state's Open Meetings Act.

In addition, O'Malley signed an identical version of a bill that Shank originally sponsored. The bill labeled sexual abuse of a minor and "continuing course of conduct with a child," another sex abuse crime, as crimes of violence.

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Shank and Del. Sue Hecht, D-Frederick, filed the same bill during the past General Assembly session, but Shank withdrew his version.

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