October 2014

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State Roundup, October 1, 2014

Published on October 1st, 2014 | by Cynthia Prairie

Maryland has been awarded a $650 million federal grant to try to steer more children out of the state foster-care system; new laws go into effect today, including decriminalization of marijuana, which is drawing the most attention from law enforcement and the media; study finds polling places for minority voters have longer waits, fewer resources; Dan Bongino struggles to make 6th District congressional race competitive; women’s leadership group disappointed by lack of commitment from Brown, Hogan; Hillary Clinton opts out of Brown funder, sends Bill Clinton in her place; wine store owner, who hosted Brown-Clinton event, donates big time to candidates; Maryland gubernatorial TV ads most negative compared to other governor races; Montgomery council OKs public campaign financing law; Montgomery exec hopeful wants cops in every school; and O’Malley talks data-driven governing with India prime minister... Read More


Audits and Accountability

by kenteegardin with flickr

Auditors find continuing accounting issues at Maryland cities and towns

Published on September 30th, 2014 | by Charlie Hayward

Some local governments in Maryland are having difficulty preparing adequate financial statements and getting passing grades from their outside auditors, state auditors found in an annual review of local audit practices for the fiscal year ending June 2013. But the report found that the City of Baltimore’s financial statements are improving, and it also stated the overall financial condition of three cities, including Cumberland, is improving... Read More


September 2014

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State Roundup, September 30, 2014

Published on September 30th, 2014 | by Cynthia Prairie

Pot decriminalization law takes effect tomorrow, drawing praise from criminal attorneys; tougher gun laws put crimp in handgun sales; state considers banning self-selected lifetime gambling ban; feds OK exporting LNG from Cove Point; new FEMA floodplain maps could mean more costly insurance; campaign for Circuit Court judge in Frederick heats up; U.S. Rep. Edwards works hard to lead more women into politics; Hillary Clinton in Potomac tonight to raise bucks for Brown; and state, local politicians call for heightened scrutiny of Baltimore City police in brutality complaints... Read More


Election 2014

Change Maryland morph to Hogan governor

State election official wants to set record straight on Hogan ruling

Published on September 29th, 2014 | by Glynis Kazanjian

State Elections Board Vice Chairman David McManus wants to set the record straight. The board did not find a campaign violation had occurred when it investigated a finance complaint filed against Larry Hogan Jr., the Republican nominee for governor, he said. The state elections board voted Thursday to waive a $50 fine in the case. McManus, one of two Republicans serving on the five-member state election board, said he wanted to set the record straight after reading several media reports indicating Hogan and his grassroots organization Change Maryland had run afoul of campaign finance regulations... Read More


September 2014

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State Roundup, September 29, 2014

Published on September 29th, 2014 | by Cynthia Prairie

Chunk of 328 new laws to take effect on Wednesday; Amazon to begin charging Maryland consumers 6% sales tax; stormwater fee opponents now advocate tax cut in lieu of repeal; teachers accused of wrong-doing languish in paid limbo during long probes; After decades with Norm Stone, Baltimore County’s eastside to get a new state senator; daughter says Hogan backs OTC birth control, for women’s rights; Brown, Hogan split over Bay cleanup solutions; O’Malley portrays self as younger, hipper than Clinton; elections board says Montgomery Exec Leggett misused campaign funds; Leggett grounds test drones; and Arundel Exec Neuman pushes slew of agenda items before leaving office... Read More


Commentary

Brown Franchot stern

Rascovar: Franchot delivers bad news for Brown campaign

Published on September 28th, 2014 | by Barry Rascovar

OUCH! That's the sound coming from Anthony Brown's campaign headquarters after hearing of a $405 million drop in expected state revenue over the next 21 months. This is bad news for the lieutenant governor's gubernatorial drive. The shrinking revenue forecast not only buoys Republican Larry Hogan's campaign, it powerfully reinforces Hogan's central theme: Maryland's budget is out of kilter and in need of serious overhaul... Read More


News

Ray LaHood by thisisbossi creative commons

Still searching for solution to shortfall in transportation funding

Published on September 28th, 2014 | by Alexis Webb

Former U.S. transportation secretary Ray LaHood urged leaders to consider following Virginia’s lead and rethink transportation funding at a panel discussion in Baltimore last week. LaHood proposes a higher federal gas tax to fund nationwide projects, but also suggested that the solution for a broken transportation system could be something like what Virginia did when it moved from a gas tax to a wholesale sales gas tax. ... Read More


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