Franchot concerned about business climate

State officials need to take a time-out for a few years on changing the tax code, raising taxes and changing regulations, all of which combine to hurt Maryland’s business climate, said Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot. While the progressive political agenda in the state is well intentioned, “it is not fiscally responsible,” Franchot said. The state’s financial condition cannot support that agenda, Franchot said. And leaders in Annapolis often make the situation worse. (Times-News)

Read Full Article

Gov. Martin O'Malley names GOP Del. Hershey to Pipkin vacancy

Given a choice between two conservative Republicans to fill a vacancy in the Upper Eastern Shore's state Senate district, Gov. Martin O'Malley chose the less confrontational legislator. O'Malley said Wednesday that he has appointed Del. Stephen S. Hershey Jr. of Queen Anne's County to replace former Sen. E.J. Pipkin, who resigned and moved to Texas. Passed over was Del. Michael D. Smigiel Sr. of Cecil County. (Balt. Sun)

Read Full Article

Montgomery County to audit contract hauler Potomac Disposal over ‘living wage’ concerns

A top Montgomery County official said Wednesday that the county will begin an audit of a Gaithersburg trash-hauling contractor to determine whether the company is paying workers a “living wage,” as required by county law. (Wash. Post)

Read Full Article

Gansler hires veteran broadcast journalist Bob Wheelock for Md. governor’s campaign

Maryland Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler (D), who plans to formally launch his 2014 candidacy for governor next week, has hired veteran broadcast news journalist Bob Wheelock as his communications director, the campaign said Wednesday. (Wash. Post)

Read Full Article

Renee McGuirk-Spence seeks to walk in her dad's 'Soft Shoes'

The newest candidate for the House of Delegates in a district that includes parts of Baltimore and Howard counties has some big -- and soft -- shoes to fill. Renee McGuirk-Spence announced Tuesday that she has filed to run as a Democrat for one of three open House seats in the 12th District. A longtime aide to former Maryland school Superintendent Nancy S. Grasmick, McGuirk-Spence is the daughter of the late state Sen. Harry J. McGuirk, a colorful character known in Maryland politics as "Soft Shoes" for the deftness of his legislative maneuvering. (Balt. Sun)

Read Full Article

Former RNC chair Michael Steele will ‘take a pass’ on Maryland governor’s race

Former Republican National Committee chairman Michael S. Steele, who floated the idea this summer of running for governor of Maryland, said Wednesday that he will not enter the 2014 race. “I’m not doing it. I’m going to take a pass on this one,” Steele said in an interview, citing both personal considerations and strategic calculations. (Wash. Post)

Read Full Article

Baker selects Prince George’s ethics director

Prince George’s County Executive Rushern L. Baker III (D) announced his choice Tuesday for the head of a newly formed accountability office that will investigate ethics complaints against county officials and employees. Robin Barnes-Shell, a former lawyer within the Prince George’s County Public Schools system, will serve as acting executive director of the county’s Office of Ethics and Accountability, an independent agency that will investigate accusations of unethical conduct and refer cases to the county Office of the State’s Attorney as needed. (Gazette)

Read Full Article

O’Malley invited to N.H. for Democratic dinner, as he weighs 2016 presidential bid

Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley (D) is booked to deliver the keynote address at the New Hampshire Democratic Party’s Jefferson-Jackson dinner in November, an appearance certain to stoke more chatter about his 2016 White House aspirations. (Wash. Post)

Read Full Article