Jan 9, 2013
In part of the hour-long opening session of the General Assembly in which he was again chosen as speaker of the House of Delegates, Michael E. Busch, D-Anne Arundel, used part of his opening speech to recognize members and staff of the chamber that weren’t there this year — with one notable exception.
Del. Justin D. Ross, a Democrat who represented part of Prince George’s County, decided last fall leave the legislature after serving since 2003. Alonzo T. Washington was sworn in as Ross’ successor in December.
Mary Monahan, the longtime chief clerk of the General Assembly, also left in the interim. She’s been replaced by Sylvia Siegert, who officially opened the session by calling for nominations for speaker pro tem.
But the seat of former Del. Tiffany Alston remains unfilled after the state’s highest court affirmed last week that Gov. Martin O’Malley had the authority to fill the vacancy. O’Malley is waiting for the Prince George’s Democratic Central Committee to withdraw their nominee, Greg Hall, who 20 years ago faced drug and gun charges.
Despite there being a blank spot where Alston’s name used to be on the board of delegates, there was no mention of the former delegate, Hall or the empty seat Wednesday.