Tucked away on page B4 of the March 18 edition was an article about a Maryland House committee vote on the proposed Maryland Reform on Tap bill. The committee rejected the proposal in overwhelming fashion — primarily, it appears, because they were upset that the proposal (championed by Comptroller Peter Franchot) “excluded them from the policy-making process” and “insulted them along the way.”
Then, in an apparent retaliatory action, a bill was introduced to roll back gains craft brewers had made during last year’s session. But alas, that bill was subsequently withdrawn, and lawmakers “privately conceded that the bill ... was a message rather than a serious proposal.”
So as I read this, the legislators who were elected to act in our best interests listened, debated, argued, considered and ultimately decided against a piece of legislation aimed at helping a budding industry that attracts tourism, provides jobs, and fills state coffers because they were excluded from the development process. And then, to make everyone aware of their displeasure, they threatened to punish the targets of their ire by reversing legislation they passed last year. To top off this political fiasco, one delegate went so far as to say, “The comptroller screwed this up for them in the worst possible way.” Wow. Did we really vote people these vindictive people into office? Time to start thinking about November.