November 26, 2014

State Roundup, November 26, 2014

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FRACKING POSSIBLE: Outgoing Gov. Martin O’Malley says he is ready to allow drilling for natural gas in Western Maryland, but only if energy companies adhere to some of the most restrictive public health and environmental safeguards in the country, John Wagner of the Post writes.

HOGAN BLASTS O’MALLEY: Republican Gov.-elect Larry Hogan criticized Democratic Gov. Martin O’Malley on Tuesday for proposing new rules and regulations in the final weeks of his administration, and said he would review and possibly try to reverse them, Michael Dresser reports in the Sun.

HOGAN ON FERGUSON: Gov.-elect Larry Hogan (R) said Tuesday that he wouldn’t second-guess a grand jury’s decision in Ferguson, Mo., not to indict a police officer for the fatal shooting of an unarmed teenager, adding that the decision “really doesn’t impact Maryland,” reports John Wagner for the Post.

Hogan transition Bentley Duncan

Gov.-elect Larry Hogan Jr. announces more members of his transition team, including former Congresswoman Helen Bentley (with cane), Ellen Sauerbrey, Harford County Executive David Craig and former Montgomery County Executive Doug Duncan.

25,000 ENROLL: More than 25,000 Maryland residents signed up for Medicare and private health plans through Maryland Health Connection during its first week of open enrollment, Sarah Gantz reports in the Baltimore Business Journal.

TEAM HOGAN: A Democrat who used to be Montgomery County executive and a former Republican primary rival were among 20 people named to Maryland Gov.-elect Larry Hogan’s growing transition team on Tuesday, as the Republican repeated his pledge to be a bipartisan leader, writes John Wagner for the Post.

THANKSGIVING WISH LIST: Center Maryland columnist Laslo Boyd offers up a Thanksgiving wish list, writing that the first item on his list is the hope that we as a nation can regain a greater sense of common purpose and togetherness. Too many of our political disagreements revolve around who wins and who loses, ignoring the possibility that there can be shared victories.

O’MALLEY HEADS TO CANADA: Gov. Martin O’Malley, who is weighing a 2016 presidential bid, is scheduled to deliver another speech Wednesday well beyond his state’s borders — though it’s not obvious how this one factors into his White House ambitions. O’Malley (D) will be addressing an audience in Canada, writes John Wagner for the Post.

HOGAN AT HARFORD SWEARING-IN: Gov.-elect Larry Hogan will speak during the inauguration of Harford County’s new county executive and county council, as the county is set to welcome those new officials as well as its new sheriff at ceremonies planned for Monday, Dec. 1, Allan Vought reports in the Aegis.

CARROLL READIES FOR 2015: The Carroll Board of County Commissioners will determine whether any policy and budget procedures will need to be updated or changed based on the county’s fiscal year 2014 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report and are in the process of reviewing possible legislation to be brought up in Annapolis this coming session, Wiley Hayes of the Carroll County Times is reporting.

SCHUH’S STAFF: Steve Schuh is rounding out his senior-level executive staff as he gears up to take office as Anne Arundel County executive on Dec. 1, reports Rema Rahman for the Annapolis Capital. On Tuesday, the Republican county executive-elect announced Danielle Iman will serve as his special assistant and oversee special projects. Iman previously served as Schuh’s legislative aide during his two terms as a state delegate representing District 31.

GARDNER’S TRANSITION: A former county manager and a local business leader will head up the team helping Frederick County Executive-elect Jan Gardner transition into office, Gardner announced Monday, reports Bethany Rodgers for the Frederick News Post. Gardner’s eight-member transition team will meet with county division directors and analyze the structure of county government, according to a news release.

BLAINE YOUNG’S MANEUVER: Republican Blaine Young (R) lost his run to be the first Frederick County executive. But in a deft procedural move Monday, he secured a place on the county’s Planning Commission. WYPR’s Fraser Smith talks to Bethany Rodgers of the Frederick News-Post about how Young’s maneuver means he’ll still have a say in county planning decisions.