Schmoke: Creating a ‘City University for Baltimore’

Public higher education institutions in Baltimore City need to be restructured to serve more effectively the educational and economic needs of the city of Baltimore and the state of Maryland. The time has come to create a new governance structure involving the University of Baltimore (UB), Coppin State University and Baltimore City Community College (BCCC). The resulting entity would become the City University of Baltimore. I reach this conclusion after viewing higher education in Baltimore from a unique perspective. Having served as mayor of Baltimore, president of UB and chairman of the Board of Trustees of BCCC, I recognize that these institutions have a significant impact on the quality of life in the city and the state. (Balt. Sun)

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Smedick: Md. lagging behind on climate action

Last week, we witnessed flash floods barrel through the state, even opening a sink hole large enough to swallow a light rail station in downtown Baltimore. Despite warnings from the scientific community that these storms will become more frequent and the passage of bills like the Clean Energy Jobs Act, Maryland is lagging when it comes to comprehensive, ambitious climate action policies, programs and plans. With over 3,000 miles of coastline, and projections putting Baltimore under a foot and a half of water in 30 years, Maryland simply cannot wait to act on climate. (Balt. Sun)

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Editorial: Trump is making Republicans the party of white nationalism. Does anybody in the GOP care?

Most Americans are probably appalled by President Donald Trump’s now-infamous Sabbath day tweet calling on four freshman women of color to “go back” to their countries, which he described as “broken” and “crime infested.” Given that three of the four were born in the United States and all are U.S. citizens, this can only be interpreted as one thing — unadulterated racism. And just in case anyone thought this was a slip of the thumbs, he was back at it Monday, calling on “Radical Left Congresswomen [to] apologize to our Country.” So please spare us from portraying this as a matter of Democrats perceiving xenophobia, which is like attributing the morning’s sunrise to popular opinion. (Balt. Sun)

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Pagnucco: Is Tonya Chapman Right for MoCo’s Police Department?

Last week, the Washington Post reported that County Executive Marc Elrich had narrowed his choices for the next Montgomery County police chief to former Portsmouth, Virginia chief Tonya Chapman and current Takoma Park chief Antonio DeVaul.  Of the two, the Post designated Chapman as the front runner.  Her tenure in Portsmouth produced numerous media reports that are useful to examine in deciding whether the county should hire her. First, let’s examine the differences between Portsmouth (located in Virginia’s Hampton Roads region) and MoCo.  Portsmouth has roughly one-tenth of MoCo’s population and about half our county’s median household income.  It is a majority-black jurisdiction and its Asian and Hispanic populations are small compared to MoCo’s. (Bethesda)

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An open letter to Jack Young: Open up police brutality settlements to scrutiny

To the Honorable Bernard C. “Jack” Young, Mayor of the City of Baltimore: I have a proposal that could help you and the city. Your statement last week that you are considering a run for mayor in the 2020 election was met with considerable skepticism. It appears that there are doubts about your leadership abilities that you need to overcome. Some people scoffed at your claim that you are being encouraged to run because of your performance in office thus far, citing your lackluster handling of the disastrous ransomware attack as well as the water outage calamities at Poe Homes and now on Howard Street. (Brew)

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Greszler: NIMBYism in Montgomery County Threatens Opportunities for Families and Low-Income Residents

No matter where you are from, we’re glad you’re our neighbor.” “Hate has no home here.” These and similar lawn signs are common in my Montgomery County neighborhood. That’s why I’m shocked at the backlash to the Montgomery County Council’s proposal to slightly scale back its heavy-handed restrictions on accessory dwelling units (ADUs). The “not in my backyard” responses reveal a skin-deep level of acceptance for anyone not like them. (Wash. Post)

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Deschenaux: Reform Md.’s budget process with a single constitutional trade

Governor Larry Hogan’s decision to withhold $245 million earmarked by the General Assembly has been front page news. These funds were dedicated to numerous worthwhile projects — school construction and the BSO among them — that the legislature had found unsupported or under supported in the budget submitted by the governor. The cost of these projects was offset within the budget total by reductions made to other programs, and total appropriations were less than the governor proposed. (Balt. Sun)

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Zurawik: Trump’s social media summit was a green light for far-right operatives to let it rip in 2020 race

Donald Trump’s social media summit Thursday has been generally characterized as an attack on such Silicon-Valley giants as Facebook and Google, which were pointedly not invited. But, in a more alarming way, I think it was first and foremost a green light for some of the more reckless and dangerous operatives on the far right to let it rip in the 2020 presidential campaign — doing their worst in spreading disinformation, conspiracy theories, doctored videos and memes that discredit Democrats or any other Trump targets no matter how false or vile the productions might be. (Balt. Sun)

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