Take another look at relocation of agencies to North Carroll

The irony of Carroll County Public Schools Superintendent Stephen Guthrie and Board of Education members lamenting a potential move of the school system's central offices to North Carroll High School isn't lost on us, but for those still angry over the closing of three schools viewing this as some sort of karmic revenge by the universe, we wonder how they will feel when their tax dollars are being used to offset the costs associated with moving the operation out of the county seat of Westminster? (Carr. Co. Times)

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June 16 // All mostly quiet on county budget front

As it turned out, most of the drama about County Executive Steve Schuh's fiscal 2018 budget proposal was over by the time he presented it on May 1. Schuh had decided on $22.5 million in one-time spending to stabilize the school system's failing health insurance plan as well as $15.6 million for a teacher salary step increase in a budget that went $20 million over the state-required maintenance-of-effort level. This attempt to shore up the schools turned out to be the biggest surprise of the budget proceedings, and what followed in the next month-and-a-half was anticlimactic. (Capital)

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Dana Stein: Students should volunteer over summer break

Classes are over, finals are done and summer vacation is finally here. While it’s important for youth to take time to relax and enjoy the summer, they should also seek ways to remain productive — especially this year, when their summer break will be even longer than usual. How can young people keep busy over the long break? They can spend their time giving back to the city through community service. Not only does service build a more vibrant Baltimore, it offers a chance for personal and educational development as well. (Balt. Sun)

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Mark Edelson, Liz Cornish: Why we sued Baltimore City over bike lanes

Connected bike infrastructure is more than a form of urban recreation. For an increasing number of people in urban centers, it is their primary means of transportation. Bikes provide an affordable and healthy means of accessing work, school and everything else. In 2015, Baltimore City updated its bicycle master plan with the aim of increasing ridership to over 50,000 city residents. Bicycle commuter traffic has increased over 40 percent since quarterly counts began in 2009, and it continues to grow. (Balt. Sun)

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Deborah Simmons: Nudity at the beach. Quelle horreur!

The trusty Old Farmers Almanac says June 20 is the day those of us in the Northern Hemisphere can officially celebrate the arrival of summer. Ordinarily, when one season ends and another begins, journalists tend to write about the proverbial seasonal bucket lists. This go ‘round, I present the What Not To Do List for Summer 2017. First up, what not to do at a U.S. beach — especially if the beach is in Ocean City, Maryland. Although the name may imply that boundless opportunities are afforded, there are limits to this town that abuts the Atlantic Ocean, and one of those limits was drawn in the sand. In short, it bars women from going topless. (Wash. Times)

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Don DeArmon: Walking and pedestrian safety in Frederick — plenty of maybes

Will the death of a pedestrian on East Street a few weeks ago finally wake the city of Frederick to pedestrian safety? Maybe. Unfortunately, despite preliminary funding in Frederick’s budget (added coincidentally after the fatal accident), the reconstruction of that area of East Street won’t be accomplished until late 2018 — or later. That timetable strikes me as slow, especially since the city placed signals and crosswalks on East Street at 16th Street last year after, I’m told, the community “made noise.” Clearly, Frederick’s homeless and low-income residents who catch buses at the transit center are remiss in not spending their leisure time advocating at city budget hearings. (News-Post)

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June 15 // Alec Ross: Md. needs coding classes starting in kindergarten

Today in Maryland public schools, we require students to take courses in a foreign language — Spanish, French, German — because learning a language enriches their lives and helps them interact in a more interconnected world. That’s a wonderful thing. But unfortunately, we’re doing a terrible job teaching our children the language that’s now driving the economy: computer code. (Balt. Sun)

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Lee Boyd Malvo and the case against juvenile life sentences

Lee Boyd Malvo, who at 17 plunged the capital region into terror through a series of random, sniper style attacks he carried out with John Allen Muhammad, presents a difficult case for those who believe life sentences without the possibility of parole are inappropriate for those who were juveniles at the time of their crimes. His actions were depraved and horrific. They caused tremendous pain to the families of men and women who were gunned down at random throughout suburban Virginia and Maryland, and they struck fear into millions more. Yet his case also exemplifies why such sentences are wrong. (Balt. Sun)

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