Friday, August 26, 2005

Tracking The Contributions

If you're interested in researching the source for where Maryland political figures receive their contributions, there are a number of sites that can help you do that. First, to get an overall sense for where Maryland political officials raised their money, take a look at the following page from the OpenSecrets website. Next, see the following page for tracking contributions to Maryland senators and congressional representatives at the federa level. For each candidate, data is presented for the source of funds, the type of PAC contribution, and the quality of disclosure. To track contributions at the state level, take a look at the site of the State Board of Elections. On this site, you can search the Contributions Database for contributions to Maryland political figures. (There's the option for a simple or advanced search; the advanced search seemed to work better for me--using only the last name and leaving the first name blank). For each individual, you are presented with information about who made the contribution, the amount, the date the contribution was made, and the contributor type (PAC, individual, business, etc.). Also on this site, take a look the the Summary Guide To Candidacy And Campaign Finance Laws.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Research Guides To Maryland Law

Just recently came across a couple of good in-depth guides to researching Maryland law. The Georgetown Law Library publishes a "detailed" research guide to MD law entitled "Maryland Research In Depth." Another good option is a publication entitled "Researching A Maryland Law Problem" from the University of Maryland Law Library. If you're looking for a book on the topic, a good option is Legal Research in the District of Columbia, Maryland and Virginia 2d ed. by Leah Chanin, Pamela Gregory and Sarah Wiant, published by Hein, 2000.

Friday, August 19, 2005

West and Michie Code

In 2003, S.B 180 entitled the "Public General Laws-Evidence of the Law" bill established the West and Michie (now Lexis) versions of the Maryland Code as equally official versions of the Code. This raises the question: what's really the difference between the two? Having not done a comprehensive assessment, these are some of the basic differences: the West version is overall cheaper and appears to have more annotations. The Lexis version is more popular, is more compact (volumes that take up 3 volumes in the West version only take up 2), and, according to some, has better indexing. I'd be interested to hear other responses.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Historical Preservation In Maryland

The Maryland Historical Trust was formed in 1961 to identify, study, preserve, and protecting significant historic districts, sites, and structures in Maryland. If your home can be classified as "historically significant" you may want to check out the links for "Grants & Loans" and "Tax Credits" on this page. Also see the link for "Local Organizations" under the tab for "In Your Community" which provides links to preservation websites on the local level. There's a good deal of information on this site which is worth looking into.

Friday, August 12, 2005

Getting Married In Maryland

If you're getting married in Maryland, take a look at the following. has a nice compilation of marriage laws for each state, including Maryland. In addition, you can also see this page for details on how to obtain a marriage license in Maryland. For Baltimore County, you can also see the following page.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Proposed MD Bill To Overide Kelo

Following on my post from last week, an article entitled "Lawmakers Prepare To Weigh Kelo Decision" (subscription only) reports on discussions by Maryland lawmakers to introduce legislation that would limit the scope of the Supreme Court's decision. Interestingly, the article notes that the Kelo decision in part based itself on the MD decision of Prince George’s County v. Collington Crossroads Inc., 275 MD 171 (1975) (unfortunately not online).

Monday, August 08, 2005

Bill Information From the MGA

Just noticed the following documents published by the the Department of Legislative Services of the Maryland General Assembly: "The Legislative Wrap Up" and "The 90 Day Report." The 90 Day Report gives a comprehensive review of those bills that passed during the most recent legislative session. The Legislative Wrap Up, on the other hand, provides a more brief overview of some of the more significant bills that passed (and some that didn't) during the '05 session. Both documents arrange the bills by subject heading and both include links to the text of the bills themselves.

Friday, August 05, 2005

Kelo And Maryland

The Supreme Court's decision in Kelo et al. v. City of New London et al. which upheld the use of eminent domain for economic development, has implications for Baltimore as well. The following article summarizes two instances in which the Kelo decision is being invoked to justify development projects here in Baltimore--the West side redevelopment project and the development of the biotech center on Baltimore's East side.