The hearing on Monday, August 7, 2017 before federal District Judge Garbis on the State's Motion To Dismiss lasted almost two hours and was very interesting.
The Judge did not issue any ruling from the bench, so the issues addressed await further order from the Court. Our main argument was that the Court should not entertain the State's motion until we had been accorded an opportunity for discovery. By the end of the hearing, Judge Garbis may have been convinced, asking the parties how long they would need for discovery. In other comments from the bench, Judge Garbis seemed taken aback by the reality that the one-shot HQL regulations issued by the State Police effectively meant that Baltimore City residents would have to travel outside the city in order to get the HQL. He also appeared quite interested in our argument that the HQL statute use of "receive" was vague and thus a violation of the Due Process Clause. Judge Garbis was open-minded and asked excellent questions of counsel. We were pleased to have this opportunity to present our arguments and look forward to a ruling.
Mark W. Pennak, President, MSI