House speaker introduces reform legislation for University of Maryland Medical System amid 'self-dealing' scandal

House Speaker Michael Busch said Wednesday that he will introduce sweeping legislation to reform the University of Maryland Medical System’s board of directors as accusations of “self-dealing” have rocked the hospital network. Busch’s legislation — which will act as a companion bill with Sen. Jill P. Carter’s legislation in the state Senate — came as top officials from the medical system met with Gov. Larry Hogan and Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller for an hour in the State House. (Balt. Sun)

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Baltimore County lawmakers to support city lawmakers on preserving Pimlico, Preakness

Baltimore County’s delegates are lining up to support Baltimore City’s lawmakers in their efforts to prevent the owners of Pimlico Race Course from moving the Preakness Stakes and abandoning the track. The county delegates are working on a letter in support of an effort by Baltimore Sen. Bill Ferguson to require that the track’s owner, Stronach Group, to get state approval of a redevelopment plan and conduct a study of effects on the neighborhood before issuing bonds that would finance a major redevelopment at the company’s Laurel Park in Anne Arundel County. (Balt. Sun)

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Bill To Increase Renewable Energy Use In Maryland Advances

A measure to increase Maryland's use of renewable energy has moved forward in the state Senate. The Senate amended the bill on the floor Tuesday to eliminate trash incineration as eligible for subsidies under the measure aimed at boosting the growth renewable energy like wind and solar. Supporters of ending subsidies for trash incineration in the "top tier" of renewable energy sources say it's wrong to classify trash burning in the same way as wind and solar. (WBAL)

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Former FBI Director warns about importing prescription drugs from Canada

Former FBI director Louis Freeh says America's opiod crisis will get worse and counterfeit medications would increase if lawmakers pass a proposal to allow prescription drugs to be imported from Canada. Some lawmakers at the federal and state level have argued the move to import cheaper prescription drugs from Canada would save consumers money from rising drug costs, but Freeh argues lawmakers are misrepresenting the issue. "A lot of it is on the policial basis that we will bring in drugs from Canada and it will be cheaper — and therefore people will save money and everything will be fine." (KXAN)

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LLC Tied To Pugh's Children's Book Gave Thousands To Campaigns, Including Her Own

Some of the money earned by Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh's book company, including proceeds from a contract with the University of Maryland Medical System, reportedly went into political campaigns, including her own. Healthy Holly LLC has made $7,040 in political contributions, according to state campaign finance records. Of that, $5,000 was given to Pugh's own campaign in 2015. Another $1,000 was spent on a ticket purchase last August to support the campaign of Baltimore County Executive John Olszewski Jr., and $1,000 went to Sen. Jill P. Carter's campaign. (WBAL)

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Frosh files final bid to save district as high court date nears

A panel of federal judges failed to draw a “limited and precise” line between permissible and unconstitutionally excessive partisan gerrymandering before striking down the state’s westernmost congressional district as too friendly to Democrats, Maryland Attorney General Brian E. Frosh stated Monday in his final plea before the Supreme Court hears his appeal. In criticizing the panel’s finding, Frosh said the test of unconstitutional partisan gerrymandering must be more specific, or more than a mere showing that the state’s Democratic leadership redrew a district to be majority Democrat and weakened the Republicans’ ability to organize, fundraise and re-elect their candidate there. (Daily Record)

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Hogan Says If He Runs For President, He Would Emulate Reagan

Gov. Larry Hogan this week is talking about the kind of presidential campaign he would run, while also not committing to entering the ring in the 2020 Republican primary against President Donald Trump. "I come from the Ronald Reagan school of politics," Hogan told The Washington Post. The moderate Republican said he would run a campaign based on more traditional Republican values, and portray himself as a candidate who would stand by America's allies. (WBAL)

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Maryland Senate committee advances bill to abolish handgun permit board that's been criticized as too permissive

The Maryland Senate is advancing a bill that would abolish the state’s Handgun Permit Review Board, which some critics say is too permissive in overturning denials of permits to carry handguns. A key committee on Monday night approved the bill, the first step before the measure can become law. Handgun owners who want to carry their guns with them must prove to the Maryland State Police that they have a “good and substantial” reason to carry the guns, under state law. (Balt. Sun)

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