ANNAPOLIS, Maryland — A Senate committee approved Joseph Gill's nomination as secretary of Maryland's Department of Natural Resources on Monday, despite Gill's recent conflicts with commercial fishermen.
The issue will next go to the Senate floor for final vote.
In a hearing lasting more than two hours, the Senate Executive Nominations Committee voted 14-1 in Gill's favor. Three Senators abstained, intending to do more research and save their votes for the Senate floor.
A couple dozen watermen came to oppose Gill's nomination, and some said the snowstorm had prevented many more from coming. They see Gill as an ill-tempered bully who dislikes the commercial fishing industry.
Gill's supporters say that isn't his personality and doesn't reflect his record with the DNR, where he was the principal attorney for 14 years and the deputy secretary since 2010.