June 13 // Laslo Boyd: Brian Frosh, Larry Hogan and Donald Trump

Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh joined the Attorney General of Washington D.C. on Monday in a suit challenging whether Donald Trump is violating the “emoluments” clause of the U.S. Constitution. The central issue is whether Trump’s failure to divest from his many financial holdings, allowing him to profit from spending by foreign governments intended to influence his decisions, puts him at legal and constitutional jeopardy. (From a Certain Point of View)

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Tovah Kasdin and Guila Franklin Siegel: New law protects victims of violence at every age

An older woman who is suffering from dementia and severe mobility impairments is referred to a specialized safe shelter for older adults. She just has been discharged from a hospital, where she was treated for severe injuries inflicted by her adult son —who also acts as her caretaker. The shelter helps her obtain a protective order so that her abusive adult child can no longer harm her. Unbelievably, though, when this victim of abuse is admitted to the shelter, her son — the very person whose abuse led to her need for medical care and protection — is listed as having the power of attorney for her, allowing him to make medical and financial decisions on her behalf. (Md. Reporter)

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The FDA takes a stand against an opioid that fueled an epidemic

Opioids continue to ruin lives, and end them, in Maryland. New official figures show that 2,089 people died from drug and alcohol overdoses last year, a 66 percent increase over 2015. Therefore it was welcome news that the Food and Drug Administration has told Endo Pharmaceuticals to remove its opioid Opana ER from the market. (Wash. Post)

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Dan Rodricks: Baltimore had its own version of Ceasefire before, it could again

I offer a follow-up to my Sunday column to make a suggestion that might spare Baltimore the lousy, looming distinction of being one of the few cities – if not the only city – where Operation Ceasefire never got a chance to succeed. If it stands, the shuttering of Ceasefire would mark the second failure of the renown anti-violence program here, and that means there’s something wrong with the city, not the program, says City Councilman Brandon Scott. I agree. (Balt. Sun)

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A small measure of reassurance

In the current poisonous national political atmosphere, local officials should be encouraged to do anything — no matter how small — to reassure the public about the honesty and transparency of government institutions. Thus it is that we urge the Frederick County Council to enact the proposed bill limiting zoning approvals in election years. It is a small but useful measure, one that implicitly addresses constituents’ concerns that such changes might be rammed through by an outgoing majority on the council. (News-Post)

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Local climate of opinion is also important

A persistent delusion about the U.S. system is that everything important in American life stems from the planning and direction of the great and good inside the Capital Beltway. Everyone else, this notion holds, is just engaged in a gigantic game of follow the leader. But in general, the major decisions affecting quality of life in your neighborhood are being made by officials a lot closer than Washington, a lot more accessible and much more aware of what their constituents want and need. (Capital)

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June 12 // Walter Vasquez: City officials' repeated decisions to undercut projects bad for business

As a member of the business community and founder of Annapolitans for Responsible Development, I am extremely concerned that the city's handling of the Eastport Landing and Crystal Spring projects sends a clear message: Annapolis is bad for business. Businesses rely on the city to interpret and enforce its laws in a fair and impartial manner. But how can any business make plans when the city can't be trusted to interpret and uphold the code currently on the books? With the Eastport Landing project, the city issued guidance on the allowable density for the Eastport Shopping Plaza in 2014. The project partners, land owners, engineers and architects then spent more than two years planning and making adjustments to the project based on that guidance. (Capital)

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Pugh's call to action

It’s about time that Mayor Catherine Pugh issued a public call to action to end Baltimore’s horrific pace of violence. What we are experiencing is not a blip but evidence of a breakdown in the social order that has only accelerated in the two years since the riots sparked by Freddie Gray’s death. We need, as Mayor Pugh says, everyone in the city to do more to combat violent crime. But we also need an all-hands-on-deck approach to helping the police department do its job. (Balt. Sun)

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