June 7, 2010

State Roundup June 7, 2010

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The state is out of stimulus cash for roads, gubernatorial candidates differ on business and O’Malley seeks to use the undergraduate tuition freeze to his advantage in November.

STIMULUS GONE: The state is out of federal stimulus money for road projects, Adam Bednar writes for the Carroll County Times. The last project was a bridge deck replacement in Prince George’s County, capping off $317 million in spending since last year.

BUSINESS-FRIENDLY?: The question of how business-friendly Maryland is remains a key part of the debate as the November elections draw nearer. Liam Farrell with The (Annapolis) Capital writes that some of the top issues will be discussed at a conference that begins today.

Two governors showed contrasting approaches to business at events last week that reveal their divergent philosophies, Len Lazarick writes in his weekly analysis. Republican Bob Ehrlich favors an approach that calls for government to get out of the way of business, cutting taxes and reducing regulations. Democrat Martin O’Malley seeks to show what government has done to foster job and business growth by getting involved.

TAXES OR FEES?: Another debate in the gubernatorial race is whether raising fees is the same as raising taxes. WYPR takes a look through the eyes of Charles Carroll one of Maryland’s founding fathers.

TUITION FREEZE: O’Malley plans to push the four-year freeze on undergraduate tuition at state colleges and universities on the campaign trail as a major contrast with Ehrlich, Childs Walker writes for The Baltimore Sun. But analysts aren’t sure how much the topic will resonate with voters.

PODCAST: It’s the slowest time of the year, but we’ve got some hot stories for you. Listen to our podcast for discussion of stories we’re watching as summer begins, including some substance for the campaign and new developments about who’s running.

BEER IN THE WOODS: The state has rolled back a controversial policy banning alcohol in state forests, Heather Lowery writes for The (Hagerstown) Herald-Mail, but booze is still banned in state parks.

POULTRY FINE: State regulators have levied a $1 million fine for workplace violations on an Eastern Shore poultry farm, the largest safety fine ever given to an employer. Lorraine Mirabella of The Baltimore Sun has the story

O’MALLEY DAUGHTER: A Baltimore police officer who responded when O’Malley’s 18-year-old daughter was found unconscious two weeks ago suspected she had alcohol poisoning, according to The Associated Press. Here’s video about the 911 call from Fox 45 in Baltimore.

POLLS DEBATE: Bob Ehrlich is urging voters to be vigilant at the polls when looking for improper voters, and Democrats complain that his comments could lead to voter suppression. Annie Linskey of The Sun blogs about the debate.