Adam Borden noted in a Friday e-mail to members and friends of the lobbying group called Marylanders for Better Beer & Wine Laws that Sen. Joan Carter Conway, has scheduled a hearing on Senate Bill 566, the direct wine shipping bill, on Friday, March 5. Sen. Conway is the chair of the committee that hears alcohol bills.
It caught Borden by surprise for two reasons. Sen. Conway was quoted as saying in a recent Baltimore Sun story that the wine shipping bill “is not going anywhere” despite, according to Borden, having a majority of her own committee and both chambers supporting the legislation. And she scheduled it the same day and time as the hearing on the issue in the House.
Reached late Saturday morning, Borden said that he didn't know how to "interpret her choosing to do both on the same day." He said the two hearings will give those who want to testify in support of the measure more of an opportunity to get in front of the lawmakers and state their case.
Bottom line, however, this is a bill that needs to pass the House first. Right now, Borden said, they don't have enough votes to get that done. "We've got to focus on the House right now," he said.
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