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Special Session Round-Up for Monday

Here is a selection of news and links from around the web that supplement The Post's coverage of the Maryland special session as of Monday, Nov. 5.

"If politicians in both parties knew about the looming $1 billion-plus state deficit last year, knew about the massive tax increases and spending cuts that would be required, and conveniently didn't tell voters much about them until after the election, they were lying," writes Annapolis Capital columnist Eric Hartley. "If they just didn't know the state was facing billions of dollars in shortfalls in the coming years -- something that had been common knowledge for years -- they were stupid. So which is it?"... The outlook is grim for a bill that would give regulatory authority over tip-jar gaming to the state, a former Allegany County gaming administrator tells the Cumberland Times-News... The governor has "agonized" over the potential locations of slot gaming in Maryland, reads an article in The Daily Times... Republican Paul Stull, who represents Frederick and Carroll Counties, vows to fight the tip jar bill, telling the Frederick News-Post: "I think it's ridiculous, to tell the truth, and I'm going to do everything I possibly can to [stop it from] even getting out of committee. [Tip jars] do a whole lot of good without any problems, so why jump in and cause a whole lot of problems?" And the bill "is a poster child for what's wrong with this entire O'Malley engineered session," reads a letter to the editor of the Cumberland Times-News... From a reader response to a poll question in the Herald Mail-News: " Taxpayers should ask, 'Why do we need an extra $18 billion out of our pockets?' The answer is obvious. Maryland politicians have always been inflicted by a communicable disease known as 'spending mania.'" ... Some student leaders who support the governor's plan are calling for a letter-writing campaign that amasses at least 250 submissions, says an article in The Towerlight... The possibility of a gambling facility close to National Security Agency headquarters presents a consternation for Maryland civic leader Tim Reyburn, according to an Annapolis Capital article: "It's going to be a tempting place for people with top secret security clearances to go"... An editorial in the Capital wants the state's voice to be heard. "We will continue to oppose slots, but we won't oppose giving voters the right to choose"... Anne Arundel County schools staffers are watching the budget battle closely, a report in the Maryland Gazette says. "Every penny is significant for us right now," says county Schools Superintendent Kevin M. Maxwell.

From The Post, the Maryland Association of Nonprofit Organizations tried to steer the attention of the state's lawmakers towards funding for health care and other social services... Some lawmakers are thinking about spending cuts deeper than those the governor has discussed, writes John Wagner... Some members of the Prince George's legislative delegation are trying to organize an effort to use their votes on Gov. Martin O'Malley's tax package as leverage to get a funding plan for the financially troubled Prince George's Hospital Center passed during the current special session, Ovetta Wiggins and Rosalind S. Helderman wrote in Saturday's paper.

If you've seen something you'd like to add, post a summary and link below.

-- Compiled by David P. Marino-Nachison

By Washington Post Editors  |  November 5, 2007; 6:48 PM ET
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