Thursday, February 16, 2012
WBAL’s Robert Lang spoke to Senate President Mike Miller after this morning’s Senate session about the Currie report.
WBAL News has learned that a joint ethics committee in Annapolis is recommending State Senator Ulysses Currie be censured, not expelled, for failing to disclose his outside work with a supermarket chain.
In a 31-page report released Thursday afternoon, the committee unanimously recommends that Currie publicly apologize to his colleagues, and that he be banned from holding any leadership positions.
Currie has already lost his chairmanship of the powerful Senate Budget and Taxation Committee, after he was indicted by a federal grand jury on bribery and conspiracy charges.
Currie had earned nearly $250,000 in eight years of work as a consultant for Shoppers Food Warehouse. During that time, Currie sponsored legislation favorable to the supermarket chain, and intervened with various state agencies on its behalf.
Last November, a federal jury in Baltimore found him not guilty of any criminal charges.
If this punishment is approved by the full Senate, Currie could remain in office.
CLICK HERE to read the ethics committee report.
Senate President Mike Miller issued the following statement after the report was released:
Today we received the final report and recommendations of the Joint Committee on Legislative Ethics in response to my formal request that the Committee investigate and conduct the appropriate proceedings with respect to ethics matters regarding State Senator Ulysses Currie.
I commend the Joint Committee on Legislative Ethics on their thorough and deliberative work resulting in the bi-partisan unanimously supported report we received today. The report will be distributed to the members of the Senate for their review and will be posted on the General Assembly’s website as well to allow for public access. The Senate will take up the Committee’s report and recommendations tomorrow morning.
Miller said today the full Senate would vote on the recommendations tomorrow. Miller says Currie will have the chance to speak to his colleagues, before they vote.
Miller said earlier today that the committee’s recommendation was unanimous.
Miller told WBAL News that he is not certain that the full Senate will approve the recommendations, or vote to change them.
Earlier this week, Miller told reporters he thought the Senate would accept the recommendations.
Currie was first elected to the House of Delegates in 1986. He was elected to the Senate in 1994. In 2010, even though he was under federal indictment, he ran unopposed for re-election.
Reached in the hallway of the Senate Office Building late Thursday, Currie had no comment on the report.
A number of senators had said they had not read the report and declined to comment on it.
… Another MD legislative joke in Annapolis. …