Changes to downtown hardly a new idea

Downtown Annapolis has been studied more than any other part of the county. A gem like this fires the imaginations of consultants and preservationists who unfortunately leave us with more dreams than usable ideas. Annapolis is not a showcase for dreams; it is a living city. Most recently, the National Trust for Historic Preservation and a cadre of well-intentioned volunteers have offered yet another design for the city’s future. (Capital)

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U.S. should lead war on pollution

As some developing nations continue to accelerate industrialization and world pollution levels rise, it is more important than ever for our country to be a world leader in clean energy. As part of a plan to fight global warming, President Barack Obama recently proposed strict new Environmental Protection Agency regulations that opponents say would make it impossible to open a new coal plant in the U.S. (Carroll Co. Times)

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A new era for Maryland’s Judiciary 

The governor’s decision to put Judge Mary Ellen Barbera in charge of the Court of Appeals is one for the history books, as she will be the first woman to head the state’s Judiciary since its establishment in Colonial times. (Daily Record)

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Clark Kendall: In Montgomery, aim for better ‘net’ economic results 

As an investment professional and financial planner, one of my goals is to empower each of my clients to take responsibility for his or her financial future and make the often tough choices needed to ensure the brightest possible outcome. (Daily Record)

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Dropping the ball on student loans

Because Congress couldn't get its act together last month — not really all that surprising given the partisan gridlock in Washington — interest rates on federally subsidized Stafford student loans rose from 3.4 percent to 6.8 percent on Monday. That's bad enough for college students trying to figure out how they will repay the debts they incur to finance their educations. What's worse is that practically nobody in Congress — neither Democrat nor Republican — wanted rates to go that high, yet lawmakers seemed powerless to prevent it. (Balt. Sun)

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Calls for local boycotts ill-advised

Some major decisions by the Frederick County Commissioners have been received poorly by many in the community. We understand the emotional reaction of those who oppose these moves, and the need they feel to act. A recent letter to the editor from a local business owner, however, discusses a form of action that, like him, we think is inappropriate. (News-Post)

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C. Fraser Smith: Could Paterakis reroute Red Line? 

Baltimore’s hope for the $2.6 billion Red Line light rail project may be on the verge of approval, but it faces a welter of potential problems — any one of which might create a derailment. (Daily Record)

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Scott Eldridge: Obama policies could stifle Md.'s biotech industry

The Food and Drug Administration's plans to streamline the approval process for "breakthrough" drugs that treat life-threatening diseases is great news for patients and has enormous potential for our pharmaceutical industry, already in the midst of an innovation explosion.Unfortunately, in the middle of all this progress, political leaders in Washington are pushing proposals that would severely undermine innovation and deliver a crippling blow to Maryland's biotech industry. (Balt. Sun)

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