Washington County home sales fall, but prices rise

Washington County's home sales fell in March, but the average house price rose, according to figures released last week. The April statistics from the Maryland Association of Realtors show that 145 Washington County houses were sold in April. That is down 7.1 percent from the 156 sold in April 2016. A total of 629 homes were on active inventory last month, down from 791 in April 2016. (Herald-Mail)

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May 15 // Hogan asks FAA to revert BWI flights to pre-NextGen patterns

Gov. Larry Hogan issued a letter to the Federal Aviation Administration Thursday asking for flight patterns to be restored to their original locations at Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport. In the letter, Hogan outlines concerns from residents in surrounding counties regarding a reported increase in noise levels after the 2014 rollout of the Next Generation Air Transportation System at BWI and Reagan airports. Residents at a community roundtable requested that the FAA revert to flight paths as they were in place prior to the "NextGen" implementation. Hogan echoed that request. (Balt. Sun)

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Delaney introduces HUBZone legislation to help save local jobs

Congressman John Delaney met with TDEC employees on Friday to discuss legislation that could save many local jobs. The legislation will extend a federal contracting assistance program for small businesses, know as Historically Underutilized Business Zone Empowerment Contracting (HUBZone), until 2022. “This (is the) kind of smart, common sense legislation that encourages people to have businesses in communities where they have super-talented people,” said Delaney. “This program gives people a little bit of a boost to help make yourselves a little more competitive.” (Times-News)

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Service workers would be retained when contracts change hands under city proposal

Workers such as food servers, office cleaners and security guards would keep their jobs when service contracts change hands at Baltimore hotels, universities and other facilities, under a proposal making its way through the City Council. The bill requires an incoming contractor to retain the existing workforce for at least a 90-day transition period. Backers say it would protect thousands of city workers from losing jobs on short notice or being forced to reapply for their own positions. Similar laws have been enacted in Montgomery County, California and at least 12 cities, including Philadelphia and New York and Washington. (Balt. Sun)

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US Lacrosse in line for property tax credit from Baltimore County

US Lacrosse, the national governing body for the popular and growing sport, is in line to have the property taxes for its new headquarters in Sparks wiped out by Baltimore County. The County Council is considering a resolution to give US Lacrosse a credit against the property taxes on the $15 million headquarters that opened last year. The value of the tax credit would be more than $150,000 annually, said Councilman Wade Kach, who is sponsoring the tax credit resolution. (Balt. Sun)

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The future ghosts of downtown Bethesda

Every downtown has its ghosts. As Bethesda evolved into a high-end district of condos, restaurants and boutiques, cherished neighborhood places were swept away — by development, changing tastes or owners deciding it was time. The 1980s saw the demise of the Psyche Delly, the sandwich-shop-turned-progressive-rock-club, and its countercultural soul mate, WHFS-FM. The Hot Shoppes, home of the double-decked Mighty Mo burger and the Orange Freeze milkshake, and Lowen’s, the toy emporium, closed in the 1990s. The Bethesda location for O’Donnells Seafood Restaurant made it to 2001. (Wash. Post)

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This Bethesda company wants to make impact investing easy

Scott Sacknoff wanted to make it easier for people to invest with an impact — and now his solution is trading on a New York Stock Exchange. Sacknoff, a former president and index manager at Spade Indexes, is the force behind Bethesda-based SerenityShares Investments and its IMPACT ETF, a publicly traded investment fund that launched in April on the NYSE's Arca exchange for stocks and options. (Wash. Bus. Journal)

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U.S. Customs at port of Baltimore catches tiny beetle with outsized capability for destruction

At a port that moves millions of tons of cargo each year, U.S. Customs and Border Protection specialists recently managed to find a single invasive bug —smaller than a grain of rice — and stop it from potentially causing a costly infestation. Agents inspecting a shipment of screws from Thailand at the port of Baltimore on May 4 found four cast skins and one live adult Khapra beetle, the border agency said Friday. The beetle is considered one of the world's most destructive pests of grains, cereals and stored foods. (Balt. Sun)

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