Md. county hearing from public on disputed English-only law

Associated Press//July 21, 2015

Md. county hearing from public on disputed English-only law

By Associated Press

//July 21, 2015

FREDERICK — The elected leaders of Frederick County are listening to what citizens have to say about a disputed ordinance requiring that county business be conducted in English.

A bill to repeal the ordinance gets a public hearing Tuesday night in Frederick.

The measure was enacted in 2012 by an all-Republican county board. The current County Council is composed of four Republicans and three Democrats.

Democratic members Jessica Fitzwater and M.C. Keegan-Ayer say the ordinance sends a message of intolerance to recent immigrants and businesses with international employees.

Republican member Billy Shreve says it’s a fiscal issue. He says the county saves money on translators and interpreters by having English as its official language.

Republican Council President Bud Otis says the ordinance sends a message that Frederick is not a welcoming county.

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