Politics

  • After Baltimore teen's shooting, a renewed desire to ban replica guns in Maryland

    Some state lawmakers say they plan to renew a push to ban replica guns in Maryland after Baltimore police shot a 14-year-old boy who was holding a BB gun that looked like a pistol. State Sen. C. Anthony Muse said he plans to refile a bill defeated last month that would have prohibited the manufacturing and sale of imitation guns that "clearly" resemble a firearm. The bill's lead sponsor in the House of Delegates was Del. Jill P. Carter, a key ally of state Sen. Catherine E. Pugh, who won the Democratic primary for Baltimore mayor this week. (Balt. Sun) Read Full Article

  • Hogan says he's still waiting for 'thank you' from Rawlings-Blake for 'saving' Baltimore during unrest

    Gov. Larry Hogan took a swipe Thursday at outgoing Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, saying the mayor had not properly thanked him for "saving the city" during rioting and unrest last spring. In his most detailed retelling to date of the events that followed Freddie Gray's death from injuries suffered in police custody, Hogan portrayed himself as a decisive leader for sending in the National Guard, saying rioters "all went scurrying home" at his show of force. (Balt. Sun) Read Full Article

  • Reflecting on failed congressional bid, Trone sees future in public service, not business

    Reflecting on his second-place finish in this week's Democratic primary for the District 8 congressional seat, Total Wine & More co-owner David Trone of Potomac said late Wednesday that he plans to pursue other opportunities for public service—although he said he remains uncertain of precisely what he will do next. "I'd like to continue to look for ways to serve the public," Trone said in a telephone interview less than 24 hours after falling short to state Sen. Jamie Raskin of Takoma Park in the nine-way Democratic primary race. (Bethesda)Read Full Article

  • Allegany County hits target on debt reduction

    Allegany County commissioners hit their target of keeping debt service payments below the $3 million mark, their goal for the fiscal 2017 budget. “We made it,” said county Finance Director Jason Bennett. “We’re there.” Bennett made his comments at the commission business meeting Thursday at county offices on Kelly Road. (Times-News) Read Full Article

Center Maryland

  • Towson University Celebrating 150 Years: Dr. Timothy Chandler, Provost & Vice President for Academic Affairs, Part 2

    Damian O’Doherty continues his conversation with Provost Dr. Timothy Chandler. He describes the university’s appeal, as the growth campus of the University System of Maryland. He also explains the university’s cooperation with the community and the shared goal of keeping the growth and development of student housing on campus. Watch Entire Video

  • Josh Kurtz: Franchot Finds His Footing

    Peter Franchot wants you to know: He’s still a Democrat. Estranged from the party establishment for what seems like forever, the state comptroller convened a meeting of 20 or so Democratic elected officials, party activists and thought leaders from across Maryland at his stately Takoma Park home on Sunday afternoon. On a day when most politicians and party stalwarts were engaged in frenetic, last-minute pre-primary campaign activities, Franchot brought this group together to discuss the future of the Democratic Party in Maryland – and by implication, his own. Read Entire Article

  • Donald C. Fry: A $15 Minimum Wage and the Law of Unintended Consequences

      Back in the 1930s a Harvard-trained sociologist named Robert K. Merton published a paper that examined why deliberate acts intended to cause change (typically intended for the good) sometimes result in unintended (bad) outcomes. The result of Merton’s work has since been referred to as the “law of unintended consequences.” More than a few books on sociology and economics contain interesting, and at times humorous, examples of how this theory has played out.  A telling example is the release of rabbits in parts of Australia to boost the hunting business. Unfortunately it also resulted in gullies and other environmental damage from an explosion of the critters undermining farm fields and other terrain. This leads us to legislation proposed earlier this week by Baltimore City Councilwoman Mary Pat Clarke which would raise the minimum wage in the city to $15 per hour by 2020. Read Entire Article

  • Towson University Celebrating 150 Years: Dr. Timothy Chandler, Provost & Vice President for Academic Affairs

    Provost Dr. Timothy Chandler, former Interim President of Towson University, speaks with Damian on the Whiting-Turner Bridge in honor of the university’s sesquicentennial. The university has come far since it was first founded, and to celebrate its anniversary, TU is placing markers to honor the stages of the university, with a particular emphasis on its education and teaching programs. Dr. Chandler calls the university a “workforce workhorse” because of the huge labor and economic benefits its students and graduates bring to Maryland. Watch Entire Video

Business

  • Long-term care insurance rate increase being debated

    Senior citizens already paying heavy premiums on their long-term care insurance plans strongly urged state regulators on Thursday to oppose any additional rate hikes wanted by insurance carriers. The seniors, who complained about the financial pressures placed on them by past rate increases, filled a Baltimore County auditorium where a public hearing called by Maryland Insurance Commissioner Al Redmer Jr. was held to consider if insurers should be allowed to impose even higher premiums. (Balt. Sun) Read Full Article

  • Under Armour expects to occupy Locust Point headquarters for another decade

    A lot of chatter these days is about Under Armour Inc.'s planned new 50-acre Port Covington headquarters campus, but the sportswear maker's current Locust Point base of operations still has some life in it. Baltimore-based Under Armour (NYSE: UA) will continue to operate out of Locust Point for the foreseeable future, CEO Kevin Plank said Thursday, providing an updated timeline for the company's planned move as he spoke at its annual shareholders meeting. Under Armour likely won't be completely out of its Locust Point headquarters for eight to 10 more years. (Balt. Bus. Journal) Read Full Article

  • Marriott's Delta Hotel planned for long-vacant downtown building

    A long vacant building at the corner of South Charles and East Redwood streets is scheduled to open later this year as a Delta Hotel, a recent hotel brand acquisition by Marriott International. The 15 S. Charles St. location was built in the early 1900s as a warehouse and was set to become a Crowne Plaza in 2014. The Tran Group LLC, out of New York City, was set to develop the hotel at a cost of $25 million. InterContinental Hotels Group, parent company of Crowne Plaza, confirmed the hotel was no longer in the development pipeline. (Balt. Bus. Journal) Read Full Article

  • BDC reviews proposals for Robicelli's Bakery, Milk & Honey Market, beer garden

    A Brooklyn bakery would set up shop at the corner of Franklin and Howard streets near the new Ceremony Coffee Roasters, in one of three developer proposals for different groups of city-owned properties now pending before the mayor. The board of the Baltimore Development Corp. reviewed and voted on two of the proposals, located in a bleak part of the west side of downtown, in closed session Thursday. (Balt. Sun) Read Full Article

Education

  • Panel launches study of how Maryland builds schools

    A commission set up by General Assembly leaders has launched the first comprehensive examination of Maryland's school construction program in 12 years, looking for ways to hold down costs while building better places to learn. House Speaker Michael E. Busch and Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller, who created the commission, appeared at the initial meeting of the 21st Century School Facilities Commission Thursday to stress the importance of its mission. (Balt. Sun) Read Full Article

  • State recommends additional construction money for Anne Arundel County schools

    A state group is recommending an additional $16.6 million for Anne Arundel County school construction projects, including funding for a replacement project at Severna Park High School and a renovation project at High Point Elementary School. The Interagency Committee on School Construction asked the Board of Public Works to approve the additional money for Anne Arundel county school projects for the fiscal year that begins July 1. If approved, the school system would receive a total of $44.6 million, which is more than the $36.4 million the school system received from the state this fiscal year. (Capital)Read Full Article

  • Harford school officials press for greater technology funding from county

    Harford County Public Schools is slated to get increased funding in fiscal 2017 for teacher salaries and badly-needed replacements of school buses, but additional funding for annual technology improvements is still needed and remains an concern to school officials, county leaders and residents, alike. "Technology is expensive, but it's very, very important especially in these days and times if we're going to continue to be competitive," Councilman Curtis Beulah said Thursday during a council review of county funding for the school system's budget. (Aegis) Read Full Article

  • Student from Bethesda-Chevy Chase High reelected to Montgomery school board

    Montgomery County students have reelected an 11th-grader from Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School as their representative on the school board, giving him a rare second term. Eric Guerci becomes the third student in the suburban school system to twice run for and win election as the board’s student member, school district officials said. Students have served on the board since 1978 and have been directly elected since 1982. (Wash. Post) Read Full Article

Around Maryland

  • County, Westfield Montgomery Mall celebrate opening of new transit center

    Montgomery County and Westfield Montgomery mall officials on Thursday celebrated the opening of a relocated and greatly expanded bus station at the Bethesda shopping center. The $7.1 million Westfield Montgomery Mall Transit Center will open for Ride On and Metrobus service Sunday in the northeast corner of the mall property bracketed by Westlake Terrace and the I-270 spur. (Bethesda)Read Full Article

  • 50-year pact gives American shad, other migratory fish a boost in passage through Conowingo Dam

    Wildlife advocates say the numbers of American shad journeying from the Atlantic Ocean to spawning grounds in the Susquehanna River each year could climb to 2 million over the next 50 years as a result of a deal struck this week with the owner of Conowingo Dam. In an agreement with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Chicago-based Exelon Corp. agreed to do more to help shad and river herring migrate over the dam straddling the river between Harford and Cecil counties. (Balt. Sun) Read Full Article

  • Annapolis officials look to study economic impact of historic preservation

    Annapolis officials want to dive deep into the underpinnings of their preserved historic neighborhoods to study the impact they have on the surrounding areas and the city as a whole. The city's Historic Preservation Division is looking to team up with Place Economics, a Washington D.C.-based consulting firm, to create a study that would examine the long-reaching effects historic preservation can have on Annapolis and its surrounding communities. (Capital)Read Full Article

  • U.S., Baltimore plan $4 million Fulton Avenue bridge improvements

    The federal government and Baltimore will spend $4 million on improvements to the Fulton Avenue bridge over U.S. 40 on the west side this spring — adding bike paths, benches and other landscaping. U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx and Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake announced the project, dubbed "Re-Connect West Baltimore," at a news conference Thursday. (Balt. Sun) Read Full Article

Commentary

  • C. Fraser Smith: For Pugh, clock might already be ticking

    State Sen. Catherine Pugh, mayor-elect of Baltimore, is catching a break. Time may be on her side. Or not. If you’re the mayor of an American city, time is never on your side. Everything’s an emergency. Something important is always at stake – the health and welfare of neighborhoods, money for public works, convincing talented people to join your team, ridding your administration of less-than-productive people. Things like this have to be decided on immediately – yesterday as they say. But Pugh won’t be sworn in as mayor until December. (Daily Record) Read Full Article

  • Traffic deaths up, tickets down

    Maryland's preliminary traffic safety numbers for 2015 are in, and they reveal a shocking 17 percent increase in fatalities. According to the preliminary data, 520 people died from injuries suffered in crashes on Maryland roads last year compared to 443 in 2014. The uptick not only bucks the long term trend of declining traffic fatalities in Maryland but it more than doubles the projected 8 percent increase in traffic fatalities nationwide. (Balt. Sun) Read Full Article

  • Police chief handled ill-advised request well

    In general, we're all for responsiveness, from the county police and all other government agencies. But occasionally a nonresponse is an appropriate response — and we're glad County Police Chief Timothy Altomare appreciates this. Sheriff Ron Bateman was arrested and charged with second-degree assault after an April 10 domestic incident involving his wife. Following routine procedure in such cases, the county police took away all of the guns in Bateman's house. But three days after his arrest, the sheriff sent Altomare a text message asking the police chief for his shotguns back so he could go turkey hunting with his son. (Capital)Read Full Article

  • Generous school budget proposal is anything but 'devastating'

    If the chairwoman of Howard County's school board ever contemplates a career change, she might consider comedy. During testimony this week before the County Council on the county executive's spending recommendations for schools in the coming fiscal year, Christine O'Connor said the budget put forward by Allan Kittleman would be "devastating." Yes, the school district didn't get everything it demanded in its record-setting $856 million budget request. But Kittleman, a disciple of responsible spending, has backed a budget that provides enough for pay raises that were agreed to in contracts, an additional 56 teachers and money for special-education programs that some parents have argued are jeopardized. (Howard Co.) Read Full Article