Chesapeake’s historic waterways paying the price of nutrient trading

Both Maryland and the city of Frederick promote kayaking and fishing on the Monocacy Rive3r. But beyond this advertising to tourists, the state’s and local governments’ oversight of the river have been more passive-aggressive than respectful. On the banks of the Monocacy, the Frederick City Wastewater Treatment Plant disgorges a waterfall of partially treated human waste carrying a gut-wrenching reek of ammonia and illegal amounts of pollution down black-stained boulders into the river.


Opinion: Pharmacy Benefit Managers (PBMs) are advocates for quality, affordable prescription drugs

There is so much rancor and finger pointing these days over prescription drug prices that consumers are often left to wonder: who is fighting on their behalf? The answer: Pharmacy Benefit Managers, or PBMs. Companies and public programs providing prescription drug coverage hire PBMs for their expertise, and ability to reduce drug costs by negotiating for rebates and discounts from big drug companies and drugstores.

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Opinion: Rolling back Temporary Protected Status is good news for U.S. workers

There were an estimated 8 million unauthorized workers employed in the U.S. civilian labor force in 2014. Among authorized workers in the U.S. civilian labor force, there are hundreds of thousands of non-citizens who violated the U.S. border or other U.S. immigration laws but received U.S. work authorization permits anyway. The Temporary Protected Status (TPS) program is one of the reasons. Trump Administration efforts to roll back TPS for countries like El Salvador and Honduras many years after the “qualifying” natural disasters have drawn outrage from some quarters. But rollback is good news for American and lawful permanent resident alien workers, writes Richard Douglas in a guest commentary.

Shared parenting brightens the lives of children of divorce

The chance to brighten the lives of children through reform of custody laws has rightly become a major issue in Maryland. The family courts in most states still create custody battles in which the victorious parent becomes the “custodial” parent, and the loser becomes the every-other-weekend parent.

Gonzales poll: Hogan still gets high marks, but support falls off for reelection bid

Among Maryland voters, 71% approve of the job Larry Hogan is doing as governor (41% “strongly” approve and 30% “somewhat” approve), while 21% disapprove (13% “strongly” disapprove and 8% “somewhat” disapprove), and 8% offered no opinion. When matched against the top three Democratic contenders, Hogan enjoys a double-digit lead but does not crack the 50% mark against any.

Reducing crime in Baltimore, block by block

Confronting the most violent criminals in Baltimore is vital, but the homicides and shootings are only the most extreme expression of a much broader wave of crime gripping the city. To address this broader challenge, Baltimore City and the state of Maryland should begin working together to empower grassroots, citizen-led solutions to crime and violence, tapping into the creativity of our citizenry to implement solutions at the family, block and neighborhood level., writes Nate Loewentheil in this commentary.

Low-income Marylanders benefit from energy efficiency

This past weekend we found out winter is here – and with it comes cold drafts of air in homes and apartments across Maryland. Leaky windows, aging HVAC systems, and poorly insulated buildings will mean too many low-income families can’t keep the warm air in and the cold air out. The good news is Maryland’s Department of Housing & Community Development has a new plan to add energy efficient upgrades in 14,000 homes and apartments for low-income families through 2020. The Public Service Commission can make the program even better.

Tangier Island needs help no matter how you define its woes

Most people don’t care too much about why the tides and the erosion are getting worse, or about the politics of climate change. “They want to know what is going to happen to them and what they can do about it,” says a Salisbury University geographer. For many, the real threat won’t come in their lifetimes, and they aren’t likely to pay tens of thousands of dollars to jack up their houses. The key is to honestly acknowledge the threat and install public policies that over time guide “the way that development takes place, rearrange the way people build their homes, the way roads are maintained.”

Md. needs to invest in farm-fresh food for low-income families

Maryland has the opportunity to move forward on a win-win program that directly invests in farmers throughout the state and helps low-income families purchase local and farm-fresh food. But we need Gov. Larry Hogan’s support to ensure the program receives funding.