Flood-damaged wall repair project begins in Ellicott City

Almost eight months after a dramatic flash flood swept through Old Ellicott City for the second time in two years, a major repair project is underway near Main Street to prevent another deadly deluge. The Howard County government said it is beginning a construction project to repair and stabilize a stone retaining wall behind buildings at 3732 Old Columbia Pike, near where the winding road meets historic Main Street. (WTOP)

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Allegations of racism that divided a small Maryland town and its police department remain unresolved

The allegations of racism that divided a Maryland town more than three years ago won’t be resolved any time soon. In a recent interview with The Washington Post, Maryland’s state prosecutor said that he plans to retry a misdemeanor misconduct case against Kelvin Sewell, Pocomoke City’s first black police chief. Sewell was fired in 2015 after he refused to dismiss two black officers who accused the Eastern Shore city’s police department of racial discrimination. (Balt. Sun)

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Offshore drilling: Ocean City active again to speak out against it

The Ocean City mayor and council are again speaking out against the federal government's proposed plan to allow seismic blast testing off the coast of Maryland. In November 2018, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, which is a part of the U.S. Department of Commerce, issued incidental harassment authorizations to five separate companies looking to conduct seismic blast testing off the Atlantic coast. Three of these companies have proposed testing near Ocean City. (Salisbury)

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State House press room could be renamed to honor Capital Gazette shooting victims

Maryland’s top political leaders are supporting a plan to rename the State House’s main media work area in honor of the five employees who were killed at The Capital newspaper office last year. House Speaker Michael E. Busch, a Democrat who represents the Annapolis area, is proposing to honor the victims by renaming the space affectionately known as “the bullpen” or “the press pit.” (Balt. Sun)

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City considers solar field at Frederick Municipal Airport

 

Following in the footsteps of large commercial airports across the country, Alderwoman Kelly Russell wants city officials to look into a progressive use for land at Frederick Municipal Airport. “This is a dream of mine, to continue to pursue the idea of a solar field at FDK airport,” Russell said last month in a public presentation of her budget priorities for the fiscal year. (News-Post)

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Chesapeake Bay’s health receives D-plus on foundation’s report card

Scientists rated the health of the Chesapeake Bay a D-plus in an report released Monday, the first time in a decade that the health of the bay has decreased. Officials at the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, which issues a report card every two years, cited record regional rainfall as the cause of increased pollution and poor ­water clarity in the bay, which had seen substantial improvements to its health in recent years. (Wash. Post)

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Public shares frustration over Baltimore police commissioner nominee Joel Fitzgerald at council hearing

Members of the Baltimore City Council heard a barrage of concern, frustration and outright opposition to the mayor’s selection of Joel Fitzgerald as police commissioner when the public had its first chance to weigh in on his nomination Saturday. Dozens of residents filed up to the microphone in the City Hall council chambers to testify before the council’s executive appointments committee. They urged council members to, at a minimum, subject Fitzgerald to more scrutiny. Some suggested rejecting the nomination and forcing the mayor to start the selection process over. (Balt. Sun)

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Special accounts allow disabled adults in Maryland to collectively save $4 million without jeopardizing benefits

For decades, people living with disabilities could not save more than $2,000 without running the risk of losing key benefits, including their Supplemental Security Income. But following Maryland’s adoption of a recent change in the federal tax code, it reported that about 1,000 disabled individuals put away nearly $4 million in a single year to help them pay for everything from special diets and hearing aids to rent, Uber fares and technology to support their independence. (Balt. Sun)

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