Hogan administration refuses to provide plan on fixing budget shortfall

Gov. Larry Hogan's administration is refusing to provide Maryland lawmakers with a plan for how he will resolve the state's structural deficit next year. Maryland faces a $700 million shortfall in fiscal 2019, and the General Assembly's budget committees had given the Hogan administration a July 1 deadline for submitting a report on how it will fix the gap. In a letter responding to the request, Secretary of Budget and Management David R. Brinkley declined to provide a plan and said the legislature's request skirts the state's budgeting procedures. (Balt. Bus. Journal)

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Hogan to speak at fundraiser for conservative Pa. candidate

Gov. Larry Hogan is scheduled to be the headline speaker at a fundraiser Thursday for a conservative candidate for Pennsylvania governor whose populist style has been compared to that of President Donald J. Trump. Hogan plans to speak at an event in York, Pa., on behalf of Scott Wagner, a state senator from York County who is one of two announced candidates vying for the Republican nomination to challenge Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf. (Balt. Sun)

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McKay bows out of delegate race to run for register of wills

Citing family obligations, Del. Mike McKay told Herald-Mail Media in May that he might consider running for Allegany County's register of wills in next year's election, if the position were available. Now it is official. Last week's indictment of current Register of Wills Rebecca D. Drew on charges of misconduct in office, felony theft and misappropriation may have hastened his decision, which McKay said last week he planned to announce in September. (Herald-Mail)

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Severance pay for top Baltimore County officials questioned

Baltimore County has eliminated a provision for a severance package for its chief administrative officer amid calls to change the practice of paying top officials when they leave government employment. County officials announced last week that the administrative officer position would no longer be eligible for the severance deal. The announcement Friday came days after the Baltimore County Progressive Democrats Club criticized the practice. (Balt. Sun)

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Rockville Confederate statue removed

The Confederate statue that stood next to the Red Brick Courthouse in Rockville for more than 100 years was removed Saturday and is set to be installed in a more private location later this week. The 13-ton statue will be installed near White’s Ferry, the privately run ferry in Dickerson that connects Montgomery County across the Potomac River with Leesburg, Virginia, according to county officials. (Bethesda)

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Wicomico County expands new elections office space

An expansion of the former Shinn’s Paint building on Snow Hill Road is underway to serve as the new Wicomico County Board of Elections headquarters, according to County Executive Bob Culver. The property was acquired in 2016 for $400,000, with another $500,000 budgeted for renovations. Due to escalating demands for additional administrative space and election equipment storage, the Bateman Street building had become unable to accommodate the board’s needs. (Daily Times)

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July 24 // Former Michelle Obama policy director mulling Maryland gubernatorial bid

Maryland Democrats have long touted their inclusivity, the welcoming party truly representative of the populace – women, men, African Americans, Latinos, LGBTQ, workers, teachers, firefighters, the middle class, senior citizens, etc. But while the Democrats in Maryland market their party on the strength of its diversity, there are is a growing sentiment among Democratic party activists that what is preached is not always practiced. The line to take on Republican Larry Hogan, the country’s second-most popular governor, could stretch around the block of Baltimore City’s Inner Harbor and into Little Italy. Democrats clearly have a qualified bench of candidates who are ready and willing to give Hogan his biggest political fight to date. Nevertheless, who is missing from that long line of Democratic candidates? Mostly women – but not for long. (aminerdetail)

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A Maryland politician has a radical idea that could make raising kids cheaper

Democrat Alec Ross has an unusually fresh proposal for solving the exorbitant costs of child care: lend parents money to pay for child care and then have them pay it back. The candidate for Maryland's 2018 gubernatorial primary insists it's not a loan, though on the surface it may look like one. Instead of putting parents into debt, though, Ross says the plan will be structured in a way that lets parents manage the cost of child care over a longer period of time, rather than having to pay the cost outright during a child's youth. (aplus)

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