State Roundup, Aug. 3, 2017

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SENATORS UNITE ON FBI HQ: A month after the Trump administration abruptly canceled a proposed new headquarters for the FBI, federal officials told a Senate panel Wednesday that they remain committed to the project and could restart the development process by the end of the year, John Fritze of the Sun reports. In a rare display of bipartisanship, Republicans and Democrats on the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works expressed frustration at officials from the General Services Administration at having learned that the $1.6 billion project had been canceled from news reports, and they lamented that millions of dollars had been wasted on the abandoned effort.

OPIOID FRAUD & ABUSE PROSECUTOR: The AP is reporting that 12 cities ravaged by addiction, including Baltimore, will receive a federal prosecutor who will focus exclusively on investigating health care fraud and opioid scams that are fueling the nation’s drug abuse epidemic, Attorney General Jeff Sessions said Wednesday.

ROUGHLY SPEAKING: JIM SHEA: Jim Shea, former chairman of the largest law firm in Maryland, says Gov. Larry Hogan is a “clever politician” who has talked a good game about helping Baltimore while delivering little help for the city. Shea, a Democratic candidate for governor in the 2018 primary, joins the Sun’s Dan Rodricks in the first in a series of interviews with candidates for governor.

CD-6 LINEUP: David Trone, the multimillionaire businessman who blasted airwaves with political advertising in his campaign for Congress last year, announced Wednesday he will seek the Democratic nomination for the House seat to be left open by Rep. John Delaney, John Fritze writes for the Sun.

GRASSO TO RUN FOR AA COUNTY EXEC: Anne Arundel County Councilman John Grasso plans to run for county executive in 2018 — setting up the first announced challenge to sitting County Executive Steve Schuh, Amanda Yeager of the Sun reports. Grasso, R-Glen Burnie, told The Capital on Wednesday that he will campaign for the county’s top post, reversing an earlier decision to run for state Senate when his second term on the council ends next year.

  • Anne Arundel County Councilman John Grasso joins Red Maryland Radio for an extended segment, where he announced his bid for Anne Arundel County executive. Saying that he works for the people and not with the party, he also defends his support of the rain tax, speaks about his environmental activism and defends the Arundel County Council. After he hung up, one of the two hosts referred to him as “chicken shit” for apparently not wanting to answer questions from the two, who obviously have a contentious relationship with Grasso.

CELEBRATING SMALL BUSINESS: Some of the country’s most successful businessmen – including Warren Buffett – joined Maryland politicians in Baltimore on Wednesday to talk about increasing business and improving the city at two separate events, Sarah Gantz reports for the Sun.

VAN HOLLEN SEEKS TO STOP DEPORTATION: Sen. Chris Van Hollen said Wednesday his office is working to stop the planned deportation of Lizandro and Diego Claros Saravia, who were detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials last week. Rachel Chason writes the story for the Post.