EHRLICH OFF THE HOOK: Attorney General Doug Gansler’s office said yesterday that former Gov. Robert Ehrlich’s radio show on WBAL is not an illegal campaign contribution, according to the Associated Press.
The Democratic Party complained to the State Board of Elections weeks ago because Ehrlich continued to co-host “The Kendel and Bob show” after announcing a rematch with Gov. Martin O’Malley, writes John Wagner for The Washington Post’s Maryland Politics blog.
Red Maryland blogger Brian Griffiths lambasted Maryland Democratic Chairman Susan Turnbull’s statement on the Ehrlich ruling. Ehrlich is not in violation of campaign rules because of a “loophole” in the law, but Turnbull insists it’s a matter of “common sense.”
Baltimore Sun reporter Julie Bykowicz is reporting in the paper’s Maryland Politics blog that Ehrlich intends to stay on the air until he officially files for candidacy in July. Here is Gazette reporter Margie Hyslop’s take on the story.
SLOTS: A powerful developer and Anne Arundel County citizens are in court over a “high stakes money and power battle” revolving around bringing a casino to Arundel Mills Mall, reports Mike Hellgren in this video story for WJZ. Sun reporter Nicole Fuller continues to follow this story — developer Cordish Cos. claim one in three names should be removed from the petition.
Daily Record legal affairs writer Steve Lash has this take on the story.
DEBT: In her Sun column, Marta Mossburg writes about the implications of Maryland’s long-term debt.
ENERGY REBATES: The state has spent only about $210,000 in rebates for Marylanders who purchase energy efficient appliances after the first month of a $5.4 million federal stimulus program, writes Nick DiMarco for MarylandReporter.com.
BULLYING: Maryland first lady Katie O’Malley is offering her help to put and end to bullying after announcing this week as “Bullying Awareness Week,” according to Gigi Barnett for WJZ. Erica Green has the story in the Sun.
FRANCHOT: State comptroller Peter Franchot continued his statewide tour yesterday, checking in with Lower Shore farmers and business workers. He said an “upsurge” in personal notes attached to people’s income taxes this year prompted his decision to address taxpayers statewide, writes Liz Holland for The (Salisbury) Daily Times.
Franchot also made his way to Washington County for part of his “listening tour” where he received a warm welcome from Republican Sen. Donald Munson, reports Andrew Schotz for The (Hagerstown) Herald-Mail.
VIRTUAL SCHOOLS: Gov. Martin O’Malley has allowed a bill authorizing the State Board of Education to open “virtual public schools” to go on the books without his signature because of the program’s lack of funding mechanism. Erich Wagner has the story for MarylandReporter.com.
OYSTER SANCTUARIES: Watermen are unhappy with plans to triple the state’s oyster sanctuaries in an attempt to prevent overfishing and encourage aquaculture, writes Sean Sedam for The Gazette. Dan Rodricks in the Sun says the plan is overdue.
SIGN CITATION: An Essex business owner was told to take down a campaign sign supporting Ehrlich because the former governor and GOP frontrunner was not an official candidate, according to Patuxent Publishing blogger Bryan Sears.
BIOTECH: Construction of the biotech park linked to the $1.8 billion redevelopment project north of the Johns Hopkins Hospital has stalled, with leaders of the plan looking for another economic anchor nearly 10 years into the venture, writes Jon Aerts in part two of a Capital News Service series.