Sarah Lacey: Representing constituents is my platform

If you're reading this, you want to know why I'm challenging incumbent Pete Smith in the Democratic primary for County Council in District 1. It started with a neighborhood problem. Construction in my neighborhood, a new planned unit development in Jessup, was completed more than a year ago. But despite numerous parent requests, Anne Arundel County Public Schools refuses to establish a school bus stop in our neighborhood of 69 homes. (Capital)

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Beth Smith: I have the experience and commitment to restore leadership to the Sheriff's Office

I am running to be your next sheriff of Anne Arundel County. I am a retired lieutenant in the county Sheriff's Office and served there with dedication and honor. I spent my entire career identifying and solving problems within the judiciary. And not one of my opponents has the passion or the qualifications that I bring to the Sheriff’s Office. (Capital)

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James "Ed" DeGrange Sr.: Sophocleus was a true gentleman, a true public servant, a true friend

June 15 // Getting a grip on police overtime

It’s not just second marriages that represent the triumph of hope over experience. Consider the Baltimore Police Department and its repeated and unsuccessful attempts to stay within its overtime budget. The city budgeted $16 million for police overtime this fiscal year, and by March had already spent more than $36 million. Meanwhile, the budget for the year that begins July 1 is $20 million, which the finance director quite optimistically has said he expects the police will not exceed. Is there a method to this madness — or at least a way out of it? (Balt. Sun)

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Terese Thonus: The planet is choking on plastic

Glimpsed along the roadside between the Baltimore Highlands Light Rail station and my home: 5 plastic water bottles with and without tops, 4 plasticized soda cups with plastic tops and straws, 3 Styrofoam takeout containers, 1 used diaper with plastic lining. Glimpsed on my lawn: a Baltimore Sun in a plastic film bag, a plastic bag for a size “M” Hanes undershirt, a cut-up (plastic) credit card, plastic wrap from a cigarette pack. In The Baltimore Sun (the one on my phone, not the one in the plastic film bag), I read about “Mr. Trash Wheel,” more precisely known as the Inner Harbor Water Wheel. Since May 9, 2014, the carbon-neutral wheel has collected 1.5 million pounds of trash, including 638,262 plastic bottles, 737,025 polystyrene containers, 522,603 grocery bags and 728,411 chip bags washed down the Jones Falls Watershed. All plastic. (Balt. Sun)

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Brian Griffiths: Here are my recommendations for this year's GOP primaries

t’s almost time for you to vote. It’s important to cast an informed ballot. I encourage you to check out redmaryland.com/2018primary for coverage of the primary election, including hundreds of surveys submitted by candidates. Here are some of my thoughts about the Republican primaries here in Anne Arundel County. (Capital)

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Can Baltimore afford to finance candidates?

Who pays for candidates’ political campaigns? Somebody has to. It’s getting expensive to run for public office — almost any office. The average cost of a successful U.S. Senate campaign is in the neighborhood of $10 million, but local elections aren’t easy to finance either. The cost of advertising, rallies, yard signs, staff and other expenses adds up quickly. Gov. Larry Hogan and Lt. Gov. Boyd Rutherford have $9 million on hand, according to their most recent report, and it’s only June, and they don’t have a primary opponent. Even running for city offices isn’t cheap — the council president raised $798,000 the last time around. (Balt. Sun)

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Michael Towle: What kind of political districts do Americans want?

Once the U.S. Supreme Court issues its gerrymandering decision, we will be barraged with claims about what this means for the political parties. Before the inevitable jump to partisan interpretations, it might make sense to reflect first on the types of districts that Americans would want to see. (Balt. Sun)

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