Our prosecutors, State Troopers, sheriffs and local police officers work hard, and they count on the legislature to give them the tools they need to keep our communities safe. That's why Jim Mathias helped pass tough new laws to crack down on sexual predators and gangs, and voted against the effort to repeal the state's death penalty. Jim voted to protect senior citizens from financial exploitation.
Gangs are no longer simply an urban problem, as gang activity has spread to every county in the state. Jim partnered with prosecutors to pass a tough anti-gang law, so that prosecutors are better positioned to secure convictions against gang members. Jim also partnered with educators and law enforcement officials to pass the Safe Schools Act, so that they can target and deal with gang activity in our schools.
One of the most common and accessible drugs on our streets are prescription painkillers; Jim voted to make it easier for people to dispose of unneeded prescription medication at pharmacies around Maryland. Jim was proud to support the Prescription Drug Monitoring Program which helps track the dispensing of prescription controlled dangerous substances and makes sure they are only being given to patients with legitimate medical needs.
Jim is a strong believer in the 2nd amendment right to bear arms and believes that citizens have the right to defend themselves and their property. It is why Jim is proud of his lifetime "A" rating from the NRA. During the 2013 session, Jim stood with Democrats and Republicans to filibuster and ultimately vote against Senate Bill 281. The bill did not address the root causes of gun violence and instead added additional burdens of costly permits, training and other required processes placed upon law-abiding citizens.
Our civil air patrol is ready to act in times of emergency and crisis, that is why Jim led the effort and passed legislation to create a $3,500 income tax modification for those that serve in the civil air patrol. Jim also joined with fellow legislators to increase the income tax modification for members of our volunteer fire, rescue, and emergency medical services to $5,000.