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Around Maryland

Howard County executive proposes LGBTQIA+ commission to support gay and transgender community

As Gay Pride Month comes to an end, Howard County leaders want to further protect and support the rights of the county’s LGBTQIA+ community. County Executive Calvin Ball announced at a news conference Wednesday morning a proposal to create a new LGBTQIA+ commission. “We will always support and affirm our LGBTQ community and need to take action in the face of increased attacks on gay and transgender equality across the country,” Ball stated in a news release following the news conference.

Read More: Baltimore Sun
Beleaguered Annapolis housing authority celebrates step forward at the former Newtowne 20

For three years, Newtowne 20 resident Mae Bridgers kept asking when they were going to do something. By “they,” Bridgers meant developers, the Housing Authority of the City of Annapolis, the city itself, or the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development. Anyone, really, who could move forward the timeline to replace the ugly, aging brick buildings where she and 78 other families lived in a federally-owned housing development off Forest Drive.

Read More: Baltimore Sun
Frederick County school board approves $822 million budget

The Frederick County Board of Education on Wednesday gave final approval to its $822 million budget for fiscal year 2023. The spending plan represents an increase of $57 million over fiscal year 2022, or about 7.5%. The board’s unanimous vote caps off a months-long budget process that, for the third year in a row, was made more complicated by coronavirus-related funding considerations.

Baltimore Police Commissioner addresses a violent weekend in the city

Baltimore’s police commissioner, Michael Harrison, is asking for help from city residents after a weekend in the city that saw several violent incidents. According to police, from Friday, June 17 through Sunday June 19, Baltimore City experienced 11 shooting incidents involving six homicides and 5 non-fatal shootings. There were also 28 confirmed robberies.

Read More: WBAL
Anne Arundel County Council approves eight Police Accountability Board members

After months of fraught debate on how to best create a police accountability board in Anne Arundel County, eight board members were approved Monday by the County Council. The county residents who were nominated were chosen by County Executive Steuart Pittman out of 89 applicants. The board will be responsible for logging and reviewing complaints about police misconduct.

Read More: Baltimore Sun
Carroll school committee members decry loss of local control with high school health curriculum

Earlier this month, as the Carroll County Board of Education adopted an alternative framework for its high school human sexuality curriculum, members of the school system’s Family Life Advisory Committee lamented a loss of local control over what students should and should not be learning in county classrooms. The Code of Maryland Regulations directs local school boards to provide “appropriate alternative learning activities” in health education for students whose parents wish to opt them out of the Maryland Comprehensive Health Education Framework section on family life and human sexuality.

sunset below Patras windmill
Feds’ First Hearing on Offshore Wind Plan Largely Gets Thumbs-Up From Public

The federal government held its first public meeting Tuesday evening on a plan to erect wind energy turbines off the coast of Ocean City, and even though the proposal has generated controversy in Maryland’s No. 1 tourist town for years, only one person testified against it. The three-hour virtual scoping meeting, convened by the Interior Department’s Bureau of Offshore Energy Management (BOEM), was the federal government’s first public hearing on US Wind’s plan to build up to 121 turbines that would generate enough electricity to power 285,000 homes from wind energy by 2026. The meeting was an early step in a federal environmental review process that is likely to take two years.


From ‘warriors’ to ‘guardians’: Will the Baltimore Police Department’s new approach make a difference?

Standing in the Eastern District roll call room, Maj. Guy Thacker told his assembled shift supervisors, detectives and intelligence officers that he was pleased with their recent stats. “You guys are fucking destroying it,” said Thacker, wearing an Army-green Baltimore Police SWAT unit T-shirt. Throughout the Baltimore Police Department’s recent history, statistics — arrests, gun seizures, stop-and-frisks — have long been a key tool for evaluating and rewarding officers. But Thacker was not referring to any of those things.

Parents Get Their Young Children Vaccinated After Eligibility Expands: ‘We Just Want To Do Our Part’
Baltimore County health officials kicked off the first day of expanded vaccine eligibility Tuesday with children as young as six months. “This is completely and totally a game-changer. Now, we can get all of society, all of our family vaccinated,” Baltimore Co. Health Officer Dr. Gregory Branch said. Tuesday marked the first day for children aged six months to five years old can get vaccinated against COVID-19. Will Green brought his daughter Eirian for her first dose. He took the opportunity to get boosted, as well.


Maryland Transit Fares To Increase Sunday After Hike Delayed Last Year

Fares for public transit in Maryland will increase Sunday, June 26, the Maryland Transit Authority reminds travelers. Single-trip fares will increase by 10 cents, with fares for Local Bus, Light Rail Link and Metro Subway Link going from $1.90 to $2.00, and Mobility Link fares going from $2.10 to $2.20. Monthly fare passes will increase from $74 to $77. The calculation is based on the increase in the Consumer Price Index for all Urban Consumers. The price of public transportation increases every two years as required by the Transportation Infrastructure Investment Act of 2013.


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