- Associated Press - Friday, March 7, 2014

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The Maryland Senate is preparing to take up the embattled nomination of its new Department of Natural Resources secretary.

Joseph Gill’s confirmation hearing is set for Friday morning. A nominations committee voted Monday to recommend him for the job. He is already the interim secretary.

Gill was the DNR’s chief attorney for 14 years and has been its deputy director since 2010.

Earlier this session, a waterman claimed Gill had threatened to intentionally hurt the commercial fishing industry if a certain bill didn’t pass. Gill later apologized and said the waterman had misunderstood him.

Nevertheless, many watermen have since spoken out against Gill’s nomination, and industry representatives have suggested other candidates for the job.

The nominations committee voted 14-1 in his favor.

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