Does Maryland Election Law Negate the Appointment of Dana Jones Who Won With Votes Only From Outside of D30?

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Dana Jones with her husband and son, after being sworn in by Maryland House Speaker Adrienne A. Jones.

Maryland Election Law §5-1004 clearly states; a Delegate vacancy shall be filled by members of the Central Committee of the same legislative district. 

When interpreted properly, this law indicates that only Central Committee members from District 30 were eligible to vote on the Appointments of both D30A Delegates, Shaneka Henson on April 25, 2019 and Dana Jones, on April 17, 2020. 

The Central Committee’s District 30 voting members for the April 17 appointment were Brooks Schandelmeier, Thea Boykins-Wilson, and Stacy Korbelak. In this appointment, none of the District 30 Committee members voted to appoint Jones. 

All seven votes for Jones appointment came from legislative Districts: 21, 31, 32, and 33. 

This deviation from Maryland Election Law §5-1004 requires clarification. 

While Democrats in District 30 are still flummoxed by the appointment of Jones, calls for transparency to the County and State Democratic Central Committees have been ignored or dismissed.

The Maryland Democratic Central Committee’s Parliamentarian, Greg Pecoraro, has not responded to a written request from the Arundel Patriot for information on Maryland General Assembly Delegate vacancy Appointments by local Central Committees, under Maryland Election Law §5-1004(c)(3). 

Donna Dunkin, Maryland Board of Elections, was contacted by phone over a week ago, requesting clarification on the Committee’s Delegate vacancy Appointment process. The Arundel Patriot is awaiting comment.

The Central Committee is scheduled to meet Thursday, May 7, from 7:30 PM-9 PM, where they will address the District 30 Appointment, Bylaws, closed meeting minutes and Open Meetings Act violations. The Committee has not publicly released their meeting notice, agenda, nor public access information. 

Author Carmen Skarlupka is Navy Veteran and she is certified by the Maryland Attorney General in the Open Meetings Act.

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