Speed camera questions

Baltimore's City Council is taking the right step by launching an investigation into a secret audit of the city's speed camera system. Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake's statements on what the audit signified, how seriously it should be taken and what was done as a result have been opaque and at times contradictory. Giving lawmakers the power to subpoena documents and compel testimony from administration officials is the only way the people of Baltimore are going to get to the bottom of this. (Balt. Sun)

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Police have advice for when violence strikes at a mall

Saturday’s violence at the Mall in Columbia was a reminder we didn’t need of something nearly all of us already realize: We live in a world where a few people act out violent impulses in public, in horrifying ways. And it isn’t clear such tragic incidents can be ended by anything — in the realms of either gun control or public health policy — our society is likely to do. But there is one thing we can all do: Prepare. (Capital)

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Brien Poffenberger: Scholarship program has many benefits

Rarely does a solution come along that solves so many problems at once. From job creation to housing prices to family structure, a group of community-minded business leaders has linked our economic health to the skill level of our workforce. And they have a plan to make it better: two years of free college tuition through the Washington County Scholarship Program. (Herald-Mail)

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Jan. 28 // Building a more entrepreneurial Maryland

The effort to focus the post O'Malley era in Maryland on developing private sector businesses and jobs got a big boost Friday from the unprecedented joint agenda of House Speaker Michael E. Busch and Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller. It's encouraging that the two top leaders in the General Assembly are both focused on the issue at the same time that most of the candidates for governor next year are talking about the same thing and private sector advocacy groups like the Greater Baltimore Committee are pursuing similar efforts. (Balt. Sun)

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Tragedy at the Mall in Columbia leaves too many questions

A troubled young man armed with a shotgun took two innocent lives, and his own, at the Mall in Columbia on Saturday — an unspeakable, unbearable crime. It occurred in a relatively affluent suburb, in the anodyne precincts of an upscale shopping mall, amid a planned community known more for its cultural diversity and harmonious race relations than for violent crime. The murders appeared inexplicable; the gunman, 19-year-old Darion Marcus Aguilar, had no obvious motive for his actions nor connection with his victims. That makes his crime no harder or easier to digest. It just leaves questions. (Wash. Post)

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Fewer students, better prospects

No one denies Maryland needs a highly skilled workforce to compete successfully in the 21st-century global marketplace. So at first glance it may seem like a bad thing that enrollments in the state's community colleges have fallen sharply over the past three years. (Balt. Sun)

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'Cow'-culated risk

Raw milk should be available to anyone who wants to drink it. But caveat emptor, as the Romans said — “buyer beware.” We’re not going to get into a debate over health benefits or the lack of them, but we will advocate for the personal freedom to put in one’s mouth what one wishes, be it a 32-ounce soda, a cigarette, or, yes, raw milk — as long as the consumer is aware of the dangers. (News-Post)

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Christopher Summers: Maryland's next round of transportation taxes

Marylanders who thought our debate over transportation taxes ended with last year's historic gas tax increase may be in for a surprise. A new study released by the O'Malley-Brown administration suggests that state government's long arm may reach into the commuter's wallet yet again. (Balt. Sun)

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