Senate Committee Approves O’Malley High-Tech Venture Fund

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — A group of senators has given preliminary approval to Gov. Martin O’Malley’s proposed venture capital fund.

Members of the Senate Budget and Taxation Committee took a “conceptual” vote Friday evening to approve the governor’s “InvestMaryland” proposal, keeping it mostly the same as the version which passed the House earlier Friday.

The House reduced the governor’s original call for the state to auction off $142 million in tax credits to $100 million and also trimmed back the Department of Business and Economic Development’s role in investing that money. The state would use the proceeds from that auction — up to $75 million — to invest in high-tech businesses.

The Senate version would mandate O’Malley use cash to help pay for the program if the state finances improve.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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