A stormwater mandate delay isn't a solution

Every four years, the General Assembly’s motto becomes “first, do no harm — to our re-election prospects.” Proposals that would infuriate large blocs of voters are quietly smothered in committee. Ideas that would placate angry voters — even if they wouldn’t make much of a contribution to long-term goals — get close attention. (Capital)

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Tim Rowland: Proposed reforms worthy of some consideration

When Del. Michael Hough discusses his plans to “fix Maryland’s broken government,” keep in mind that a majority of the state does not believe it’s broken at all, and therefore sees little in need of fixing. Just as we out here in the sticks avert our eyes and shake our heads at what we see as obvious malfeasance in Annapolis, voters in the metropolitan areas avert and shake when they see households bristling with weaponry and members of the population who wish to leave the state altogether. (Herald-Mail)

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Freeman Hrabowski: Baltimore through student eyes

When my family and I moved to this region in the late 1970s, we were struck by how many people made a sharp distinction between "the City" and surrounding counties. In today's global society, the boundaries blur. I hear UMBC students from Moscow to Mumbai ask others where they are from, and local students say, with pride, that they are from Baltimore, whether they grew up in the city neighborhoods of Charles Village and Patterson Park or the nearby communities of Glen Burnie and Towson. (Balt. Sun)

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Our suggestions to fix Maryland politics

On Friday, we editorialized on Delegate Michael Hough’s “Agenda to Fix Maryland,” which had four reasonable, but doomed, proposals to cure what he termed the state’s “broken” political system: more transparency, term limits, more restrictions on lawmakers and political aides becoming lobbyists, and a supermajority vote to raise taxes. We don’t have any restrictions about what we can suggest to improve Maryland’s political process. With that carte blanche in hand, here’s our list of tweaks. (News-Post)

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Rascovar: Lt. Gov. Brown takes heat on Obamacare

Let’s face it: Maryland dropped the ball on implementing Obamacare. To date the rollout has been a failure. Thirty-seven hundred sign-ups since October 1. That’s pathetic. Who bears ultimate responsibility? (Md. Reporter)

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Lloyd Waters: And the people cried term limits

And the people cried, “term limits!” Del. Michael J. Hough has come up with a novel idea that actually has the support of many people. When the Maryland General Assembly meets this session, Hough is going to propose that Maryland adopt a “term limit” proposal and a two-thirds majority to increase taxes.

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Address shortfalls in services

While arguments can be made for and against the special exceptions that the Carroll County Board of Commissioners granted for two developments last week, the fact that the board approved the exceptions without also figuring out a way to address the current deficiency is inexcusable. Last week, the board voted to allow two subdivisions that had previously been rejected by the planning commission because of a lack of adequate facilities. (Carr. Co. Times)

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Thomas Maronick Jr.: Reform bail system, don't discard it

The Sun editorial on amending the bail system ("Better Bail," Nov. 29) argues that changing the bail system from a financial-based system to a risk-based system would provide a fairer way of getting defendants to court regardless of financial status, but such a move would likely create many more problems that it will ever solve. (Balt. Sun) 

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