Politics

  • Brown, Hogan tight-lipped on tax-cut strategy, repercussions on budget

    Talk of taxes has dominated Maryland’s race for governor. Lt. Gov. Anthony G. Brown, the Democratic candidate, promises not to raise them and hopes to cut a few. Republican nominee Larry Hogan pledges more than that: He wants to roll back as many increases as possible that were passed during the eight-year tenure of Brown’s boss, Gov. Martin O’Malley (D). But with just days remaining before Tuesday’s surprisingly competitive election, Hogan and Brown have not issued plans telling voters which taxes they would cut, by how much and how quickly. And they’ve said little about what spending they would eliminate to offset lost revenue. (Wash. Post) Read Full Article

  • Hillary Clinton rallies for Brown

    Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton came to Maryland on Thursday to praise the record of the O'Malley administration and urge young voters to turn out for Lt. Gov. Anthony G. Brown. At a rally on the University of Maryland in College Park, Clinton said that as governor, Brown "would be on your side," fighting to promote gender equality, gun-control laws and other core Democratic values. (Balt. Sun) Read Full Article

  • Larry Hogan: Will a lifetime in politics lead this businessman to elected office?

    For much of his life, Maryland gubernatorial hopeful Larry Hogan has held a ringside seat to political power. Although the Republican is campaigning as a successful small-business man and Annapolis outsider, he grew up the son of a congressman, spending many weekends as a teenager at his dad’s Capitol Hill office. While his friends were flipping through comic books, Hogan likes to say, he was a nerd who read the Congressional Record. (Wash. Post) Read Full Article

  • Michelle Obama to attend Baltimore rally for Anthony Brown

    Michelle Obama will come to Baltimore Monday for an election eve rally for Democratic gubernatorial candidate Anthony G. Brown, the campaign said Thursday. The first lady's appearance at the War Memorial Plaza on Monday is the latest evidence that national Democrats are pulling out all stops to keep the Maryland State House blue in the face of an aggressive challenge by Republican Larry Hogan in Tuesday's election. (Balt. Sun) Read Full Article

Center Maryland

  • Donald Fry: Tax policy challenges are key to business climate overhaul

    After years of being buffeted by low rankings on many national surveys, Maryland’s business climate is about to be overhauled. That’s what many candidates in next week’s election are promising us.  But whoever emerges victorious from next week’s election will face a set of key tax challenges that must be addressed to improve our state’s business climate.Read Full Article

  • Center Maryland Radio Minute -- Josh Kurtz on Hillary Clinton and Maryland Politics

    Center Maryland columnist Josh Kurtz talks about Hillary Clinton's role in Maryland politics in the latest segment of Center Maryland's new feature, the Center Maryland Radio Minute, heard exclusively on WNEW 99.1. Check out the segment, and a special thanks to SaveFarmFamilies.org for helping to sponsor this week's Center Maryland Radio Minute.Listen to the Radio Minute

  • Center Maryland’s General Election Pundit Contest – 2014 Edition

    It’s time for Center Maryland to once again test the election forecasting abilities of our regular readers. Enter Center Maryland’s 2014 General Election Pundit Contest. We have picked out a selection of competitive (or somewhat competitive) races across Maryland, at all levels of state and local government. Entries are due by Tuesday at 3 p.m. Enter Election Contest

  • Laslo Boyd: It’s All About Turnout

    This Tuesday’s election will be determined by who can lure the most supporters to the polls. That may seem like a tautology but, in the aftermath of a dreary campaign that failed to energize or motivate voters, organizational efforts are likely to be decisive. In this showdown, Anthony Brown starts with a distinct advantage. First, he has a much larger potential pool from which to draw. With Democrats outnumbering Republicans in Maryland two-to-one, Brown should have a much easier time finding supporters. Read Full Article

Business

  • Construction begins at LNG terminal

    Construction has begun at Dominion’s Cove Point liquefied natural gas terminal in Lusby in order to export natural gas by late 2017. Dominion announced in a news release Thursday that initial construction work at the 131-acre terminal has started with work site clearing and grading. The company received notice to proceed from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on Wednesday, said Dominion Cove Point spokesman Karl Neddenien. (Recorder)Read Full Article

  • Exelon Corp. CEO Christopher Crane touts Pepco Holdings merger

    Christopher Crane, president and CEO of Exelon Corp., gave his side of how the Chicago-based energy provider began courting Pepco Holdings Inc. earlier this year. His story meshes with the account Pepco President, CEO and Chairman Joe Rigby told in April during a conference call announcing the $6.8 billion deal. "I called Joe because I prefer to do the negotiations myself," Crane told The Economic Club of Washington, D.C. during a Thursday luncheon. "Joe said, 'We don't need to do this, but I can see the benefits.'" (Wash. Bus. Journal)Read Full Article

  • Hogan, Brown offer their views on fracking, cleaning up the bay, taxing chickens

    Governing the state of Maryland for the next four years won’t be entirely about business and taxes and budgets. The next chief executive of Maryland will also certainly face a number of environmental policy challenges. Decisions on fracking, the Chesapeake Bay, clean and renewable energy initiatives will all be in front of the next governor, whether it is Anthony G. Brown, the Democrat, or Republican Larry Hogan. (Daily Record)Read Full Article

  • Montgomery council proposes relief for cab companies

    Taxicab companies that asked for regulatory relief from Montgomery County could soon get it. Ride-sharing companies like Uber and Lyft have been gaining market share in Montgomery County and traditional cab companies claim county regulations restrict their ability to compete against the newcomers. Several cab companies asked the county for relief, specifically a loosening of county regulations to allow, among the changes, for drivers to use their own vehicles and for software-based meters. Council members introduced three bills designed to level the playing field between traditional taxicab companies and the likes of Uber and Lyft. (Gazette) Read Full Article

Education

  • St. Mary’s school board asks state to oust Crosby

    The St. Mary’s County Board of Education voted 3-1, with one abstention, to approve a resolution to send a letter to the Maryland State Board of Education asking that Marilyn Crosby be removed from the school board. School board chair Sal Raspa read a resolution regarding the investigation of the disclosure in July of information to the media about a school system employee that would be a “serious violation of the Maryland Public Information Act and Board Policy BC,” according to the resolution. (Enterprise) Read Full Article

  • Prince George’s school board races could boost county executive’s influence

    Nearly two years ago, Prince George’s County Executive Rushern L. Baker III tried to take over the school system and abolish the elected school board. State lawmakers agreed to a compromise that gave Baker more influence over the schools, allowing him to hire a new schools chief, appoint three new board members and name the board’s chairman and vice chairman. Voters who head to the polls Tuesday can decide whether to give Baker (D) even greater control over the school system, which has shown recent academic gains but is among Maryland’s worst-performing districts. (Wash. Post) Read Full Article

  • Largo HS parents: 'The community wasn't given a voice'

    Some Largo High School parents say they are disappointed they were not asked for their input before the school was considered as a site for a non-native English speakers program. The CASA-Internationals Community High Schools program would offer a small school environment for recently arrived immigrants who are English language learners, said Prince George’s County Public Schools’ spokesman Max Pugh. (Gazette) Read Full Article

  • Thousands apply to Baltimore Co. magnet schools

    Thousands of Baltimore County students are trying to land seats in one the district's popular magnet school programs, but it's a very competitive process. More than 6,000 students are vying for just 2,000 slots, and time is running out to apply. Students have less than a month to make their best pitch to try to get into a school that matches their interest and academics. (WBAL-TV) Read Full Article

Around Maryland

  • Just Under 8-Percent Of Voters Cast Ballots Early

    Early voting has ended ahead of the general election. The Maryland State Board of Elections reports that 283,291 people voted in the eight day early voting period that ended on Thursday night. That figure represents 7.7 percent of the state's eligible voters. Officials say the 64,275 voters who cast ballots on Thursday represented the largest one day total of early voters. (WBAL) Read Full Article

  • Civil rights groups ask court to strike down liability cap

    Civil rights groups are asking Maryland's highest court to strike down a state law capping the amount of money plaintiffs can receive after successfully suing a localgovernment, saying larger penalties are necessary to ensurejustice in police brutality cases. The cap stems from a state law that says a local government's liability may not exceed $200,000 per plaintiff in a lawsuit and $500,000 for all claims connected to one incident. Even when a jury awards millions of dollars in damages, the amount is reduced to comply with the cap. (Balt. Sun) Read Full Article

  • Baltimore official who oversaw Circulator indicted on bribery, money-laundering charges

    A former city transportation official who ran the Charm City Circulator and water taxi programs has been federally indicted on charges that he took $90,000 in bribes — prompting city government to conduct a "thorough review of all internal monetary controls and procedures." Prosecutors say Barry Stephen Robinson, the city's chief of transit and marine services, who resigned last week, took a $20,000 cash bribe in exchange for erasing a $60,000 debt owed to the city for advertising on Circulator buses, and a $70,000 bribe in exchange for selling off $250,000 worth of city bus stop shelters. He planned to use some of the money to fund his retirement, according to the indictment, which was announced Thursday. (Balt. Sun) Read Full Article

  • Striped bass catch curbs ordered

    Moving to counter worrisome declines in one of the East Coast's most prized fish, an interstate commission has ordered a 25 percent cutback in the catch of striped bass along the Atlantic coast next year and a somewhat more gradual reduction by anglers and commercial fishermen in the Chesapeake Bay. The decision by the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission during its meeting this week in Mystic, Conn., came in response to a warning last year by scientists that striped bass — Maryland's state fish, also known as rockfish — were on the verge of being overfished. Experts predicted the number of spawning females would slip to unsustainable levels within the next year or so. (Balt. Sun) Read Full Article

Commentary

  • Negativity should not discourage voting

    The belief among candidates and professional campaign consultants is that going negative works. And it’s true that we’ve been discussing the attack fliers that have been coming in the mail. There has been plenty of advertising accentuating the positive attributes of the candidates as well. Don’t let the cynics win. Decide for yourself who or what you will believe, or ask people whose opinions you respect. And vote. (Recorder) Read Full Article

  • Check vote for accuracy

    Voters going to the polls on Tuesday would be wise to double check their choices before confirming their ballot given the number of instances reported where voting machines changed people's votes. Some Republican voters have said that their votes were switched to the Democratic candidate for governor during early voting. The state Republican Party called on the state Board of Elections to investigate the concerns. (Carr. Co. Times) Read Full Article

  • A hard report to swallow

    We can understand the possibility that the Baltimore state's attorney's office concluded, after examining the evidence, that it did not have a criminal case against two city police officers who repeatedly struck a patient at MedStar Good Samaritan Hospital with a Taser last May. But the prosecutors' contention that the use of Tasers and other physical means to restrain 19-year-old George V. King had nothing to do with his lapse into a coma moments after the incident and his death a week later is hard to believe. Given the already strained relationship between officers and community residents, that finding is bound to feed into complaints of excessive use of force by Baltimore police and fuel charges that the department is out of control. (Balt. Sun) Read Full Article

  • C. Fraser Smith: Unifying candidate in Frederick

    Democrats are missing an opportunity in apple red Frederick. A good government opportunity for Maryland. And even the USA. There’s an opportunity to stand up for compromise and civilized political conversation. But the party is blowing it. The party is doing next to nothing for its 4th District state Senate candidate, Dan Rupli. (Daily Record) Read Full Article