Politics

  • Hogan: Trump ‘probably should stop talking’ about Confederate monuments

    Maryland’s popular Republican governor further distanced himself from President Trump on Thursday, saying that the president has not shown the kind of leadership the country needs following the deadly violence in Charlottesville. “I thought he did a really bad job responding to it,” Gov. Larry Hogan said of Trump’s comments in recent days. “It wasn’t presidential.” Trump tweeted on Thursday that it was “foolish” to remove from public grounds statues of historical figures who, for many, represent a legacy of slavery and racism. Removing Confederate statues, he argued, meant that the history and culture of the country was being “ripped apart.” (Wash. Post) Read Full Article

  • Maryland Senate president slams Hogan for fast vote to remove Taney statue

    Maryland Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller Jr. (D-Calvert) on Thursday lashed out at Gov. Larry Hogan (R) for quickly advancing plans this week to remove a controversial State House statue of former U.S. Supreme Court justice Roger B. Taney, who defended slavery in the landmark 1857 Dred Scott decision. In a letter to the governor, Miller defended Taney’s legacy and said the memorial should stay put to help educate people about the past. He also criticized Hogan for pushing a vote on the matter “outside the public eye.” (Wash. Post) Read Full Article

  • Brown: Trump's Charlottesville comments show he's 'unfit for office'

    U.S. Rep. Anthony Brown said Thursday that President Donald Trump's response to events in Charlottesville, Virginia, shows he is "unfit for office" and called on Republicans in Congress "to take meaningful action to rein in this administration." Brown, a freshman Democrat who represents portions of Prince George's and Anne Arundel counties, said he plans to vote in favor of censuring Trump, who has been roundly criticized for his comments this week that violence at a white supremacist rally was the fault of "both sides." In a statement, Brown called Trump's response to the events "shameful and unbecoming of and (sic) appreciation for our nation's values, as well as of the history of the struggles and sacrifices that have been made by generations of Americans to perfect our imperfect nation." (Capital) Read Full Article

  • Second Democrat files for District 32 House seat

    An Army veteran who works in cybersecurity is the second Democrat to file for a seat in the House of Delegates' District 32. Hanover resident Derek Kent filed as a candidate for the three-member district in July. The 34-year-old District 32 Democratic Club board member is running on a progressive platform that includes support for national issues such as universal health care and publicly funded elections, as well as a statewide $15 minimum wage, free public college for Maryland residents and 12 weeks of guaranteed paid family and medical leave for all employees in the state. (Capital) Read Full Article

Center Maryland

  • We need a State Center plan

    Here's the good news: When Gov. Larry Hogan joined Mayor Catherine Pugh for a tour of the State Center office complex in Baltimore, the redevelopment plans for which he killed last year, he unequivocally committed to keeping the more than 3,000 state jobs now located there in the city. He discussed with the mayor ideas for redeveloping the site and made clear that he believes the state should be a part of that effort. The bad news is, Mr. Hogan engaged in some serious revisionist history about the long stalled project, which was initially conceived by the Ehrlich administration in 2004. (Balt. Sun) Read Full Article

  • Five Issues for the White House Opioid Commission to Address

    Yesterday, the President’s Commission on Combating Drug Addiction and the Opioid Crisis issued its draft interim report on fighting the national opioid crisis. I support the draft recommendations included in the Commission’s report, especially the call for declaring a national state of emergency. Read Full Article 

  • Jamie Fontaine: Fear 2.0

    Trump’s Twitter announcement Wednesday that the U.S. will no longer “accept or allow” transgender people to serve in our military may well be his most blatant and outrageous attack on the LGBT community yet.Read Full Article.

  • Dr. Leana Wen: Baltimore City Health Commissioner Condemns New Senate Healthcare Proposal

    A Senate bill revealed today – the so-called the Better Care Reconciliation Act – is even worse than the initial proposal and will result in loss of healthcare for millions of Americans. Read Full Article

Business

  • McCormick closes deal to buy condiments maker for $4.2 billion

    McCormick & Co. has closed a deal to buy the maker of Frank’s RedHot sauce and French’s mustard for $4.2 billion, the Sparks-based spice and flavorings maker said Thursday. The company announced plans last month to buy the food division of United Kingdom-based Reckitt Benckiser Group, a move expected to boost McCormick to a top spot as a U.S. condiment maker. Analysts have said the deal will give McCormick a more diverse product mix and less exposure to the ups and downs of the increasingly competitive U.S. spice market. McCormick said it funded the acquisition through a mix of new debt and equity. (Balt. Sun) Read Full Article

  • Negotiators: New plan for Towson parcel likely will have no Royal Farms, gas pumps

    A revised development plan for the corner of York Road and Bosley Avenue in Towson likely will not include a Royal Farms store or gas pumps — two features that some neighbors of the parcel vehemently oppose in the existing plan for the site — according to Baltimore County Council Chairman Tom Quirk and officials of the site's Towson-based developer, Caves Valley Partners. "I think we have a deal on the table right now where there will be no Royal Farms — no gas station," Quirk said this week. Quirk has been leading negotiations on a new plan for the site that involves input from neighbors, community activists and Caves Valley officials. (Balt. Sun) Read Full Article

  • Goldman Sachs buys Howard County industrial portfolio for $40.5 million

    Goldman Sachs has acquired a three-building industrial portfolio in Howard County for $40.5 million. Cushman & Wakefield, which represented seller Terreno Realty Corp., announced the deal Thursday. “The desire to gain exposure to the third-wealthiest and most educated consumer population in the United States is creating a strong demand for industrial product in our market,” Jonathan Carpenter, an executive director at Cushman & Wakefield, said in a statement. (Balt. Sun) Read Full Article

  • Md. marijuana growers that missed Monday deadline could get second chance

    Six of 15 pre-approved medical marijuana growers missed Monday's deadline to receive approval for a full license to operate in Maryland. But the state might give those companies a second chance. The Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission awarded pre-approval to 15 grower and 15 processor businesses in August last year. Those companies had a year to get their operations up and running, including full background and financial checks and state inspections. (Balt. Bus. Journal)Read Full Article

Education

  • Parents confront Maryland school leaders after sex abuse allegations

    Some parents from a suburban Maryland middle school called for the Charles County superintendent to resign during a tense meeting Wednesday night with school system officials after a former staff member was charged with sexually abusing at least 24 children. About 50 parents attended the meeting at Benjamin Stoddert Middle in Waldorf to question Superintendent Kimberly A. Hill about how her administration handled the allegations against Carlos Deangelo Bell, a former Stoddert instructional assistant. (Wash. Post) Read Full Article

  • Harford still opposes crowdfunding sites for school donations

    Raising money through online crowdfunding sites is an ideal way for teachers to find the funds to purchase classroom materials and should be restored, the head of the Harford County teachers' union says, but the schools superintendent disagrees. "That is not necessarily the fault of the system, but there's no way to fill all the holes and this, if properly restricted, guided, governed, is one of those ways you can fill the holes," Ryan Burbey, president of the Harford County Education Association, said during a presentation to the school board earlier this week. (Aegis) Read Full Article

  • Stuff the Bus donation drive yields 10 buses' worth of supplies

    Ten buses' worth of school supplies were donated through the 2017 Stuff the Bus Campaign, according to a statement issued Wednesday by United Way of Frederick County. The donation campaign organized through United Way of Frederick County and Frederick County Public Schools aims to help students in need by giving them the supplies they need to succeed in school, the release stated. This year's drive yielded more than 70,000 items distributed to between 2,000 and 3,000 FCPS students. The total donations represent more than double the amount contributed in the 2016 campaign, meeting United Way Executive Director Ken Oldham's goal of filling 10 buses with donated items. (News-Post) Read Full Article

  • Washington County Public Schools to try 'parent-friendly' report cards

    Evolving technology is allowing Washington County Public Schools to bring the elementary grading process closer to parents. Six elementary schools in the county will serve as pilot locations for gradebook and report-card enhancements that officials say will make for more personalized learning and give parents a look at what measures contribute to their children's grades. "What's big to parents is they'll be able to see how their child's progressing by each individual standard," said Michael Kuhaneck, supervisor of school improvement. "They'll be able to see a child's learning by standard over time." (Herald-Mail) Read Full Article

Around Maryland

  • Work crew removes Taney statue from Maryland State House grounds

    Workers dismantled a 145-year-old statue of Supreme Court Justice Roger B. Taney outside the Maryland State House shortly after midnight Friday, the latest ripple effect from last weekend’s deadly violence at a rally of white supremacists in Charlottesville. Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R) said his revulsion at what happened in Charlottesville — at a demonstration purportedly in defense of a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee — prompted him to change his mind about the Taney statute and push for its removal, an act long sought by civil rights groups. (Wash. Post) Read Full Article

  • Hogan announces $38.4 million in grants for local roads

    Gov. Larry Hogan announced this week that the administration is making nearly $38.4 million in grants available for local roads in Baltimore city and municipalities and counties from Western Maryland to the Eastern Shore. The Maryland Department of Transportation has released the application that needs to be submitted by Thursday, Aug. 31, according to a news release from the governor’s office. The grants will be awarded to jurisdictions based on the existing formula for the distribution of Highway User Revenues, according to the release. "Since the beginning of our administration, we have been committed to investing in roads and bridges across the state," Hogan said in the release. (Carr. Co. Times)Read Full Article

  • Assistant U.S. Attorney Tapped To Root Out 'Pill Mills' In Maryland

    Maryland's acting top federal prosecutor this week announced the appointment of a prosecutor focused on opioid-related health care fraud. Rachel Yasser will lead that effort in Maryland. Yasser, 38, has been an assistant U.S. attorney in Maryland since 2008. Earlier this month, Attorney General Jeff Sessions said he would dispatch prosecutors to 12 cities ravaged by addiction. He said the Opioid Fraud and Abuse Detection Unit would use data to root out pill mills and track down practitioners who illegally prescribe or distribute narcotics like fentanyl and other powerful painkillers. (WBAL) Read Full Article

  • A “Tent City” outside City Hall to press the mayor on homelessness and more

    While national media swarmed City Hall this week to cover Baltimore’s overnight removal of its Confederate monuments, Mary Scott was inside one of about 20 matching red tents in front of the building to plead for a lower profile cause: The plight of Baltimore’s homeless and struggling poor. “I was more than excited to come out here and sleep in a tent,” said Scott, explaining she just recently had to leave her East Baltimore house after her boyfriend’s cousin was killed inside, making it dangerous to return. “And now I get to keep the tent and maybe use it or give it to someone in need of it,” said Scott, 34, who works as a security guard in four office buildings near City Hall. (Brew) Read Full Article...

Commentary

  • It’s time for a full and fair reckoning with Confederate statues

    With astonishing rapidity, the violent events at Charlottesville have accelerated an already intense debate over what to do with hundreds of Confederate monuments and related statuary across the United States. After officials removed four statues in Baltimore and announced plans to remove a fifth in Annapolis, and after demonstrators spontaneously destroyed a Confederate memorial in Durham, N.C., President Trump weighed in on the matter: “Sad to see the history and culture of our great country being ripped apart with the removal of our beautiful statues and monuments,” he wrote in a series of tweets. Let’s be clear. No one is talking about ripping the country apart — unless it’s the president himself. (Wash. Post) Read Full Article

  • Severn River Bridge plan requires a little faith, and littler lanes

    Anyone who drives the Severn River Bridge knows it can be crowded, and frankly, intimidating. The 1.6 miles between Rowe Boulevard and the Ritchie Highway/Route 450 interchange near Annapolis is a local choke point of continuing concern to commuters, those passing through on the way to the Bay Bridge and police agencies charged with keeping them all safely moving along. The speeds are fast and the lanes seem to narrow coming off the land portion of Route 50. A 2011 study found a number of reasons that were a surprise to very few. Engineers found that congestion at the bridge is caused by the number of trucks, narrow shoulders, the way traffic merges as it exits the Rowe Boulevard ramps and human factors like drivers jumping lanes and slowing to view the beautiful — isn’t it lovely — Severn River as they cross. (Capital)Read Full Article

  • Lisa VanBuskirk: Is shifting Anne Arundel school start times worth it?

    When classes resume for Anne Arundel County Public Schools next month, high school start times will shift from 7:17 a.m. to 7:30 a.m. and nearly all other schools’ hours will shift by 15 minutes. Is it worth it? For our teens, yes. Teens’ sleep cycles, which are driven by biology (not cellphone use or parenting), dictate that teens generally can’t fall asleep until 11 p.m., and they need eight to 10 hours of sleep nightly. Research shows even small shifts are beneficial, and, despite popular belief, when school starts later, teens don’t stay up later. They fall asleep at the same time and they get more sleep. (Capital)Read Full Article

  • Shahem Mclaurin: Baltimore kids give back when you give to them

    Over the past few years, Baltimore has struggled under the weight of record high murders. My community in Southeast Baltimore has seen a spike in property crime. The violence is stifling. But for me, the worst part is that many of these crimes have been committed by young people who look like me. Like many people who live in Southeast Baltimore, I share a sense of anxiety and worry regarding my property and the place I call home. Beyond this, I have a deep concern for the people I share the region with — most notably the youth. (Balt. Sun) Read Full Article