Crunch time coming for Kirwan commission; public hearings set

Crunch time is coming for the Commission on Innovation and Excellence in Education, chaired by former University System Chancellor Brit Kirwan and commonly known as the Kirwan commission. After nine meetings over the past year, the 24-member commission has heard from dozens of experts and consultants on many aspects of education policy, practice and funding. Now, it’s time to make some recommendations and decisions for a report due to the governor and legislature in December.

A compromise on illegal gun possession in Baltimore: Treat minimum sentences like an emergency public health measure

To try to control the rapid growth in gun violence and get guns of the street, Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh and Police Commissioner Kevin Davis are pushing a new city ordinance that would impose a one-year minimum sentence for carrying an illegal firearm in Baltimore. But a sunset provision could make the measure more palatable, writes Nate Loewentheil.

Photo Gallery: Hot and steamy under big tent at Tawes crab feast

The Ringling Brothers circus closed earlier this year, and it looked like lobbyist Bruce Bereano had bought one of their tents as the longtime Annapolis influencer hosted the biggest gathering at the annual J. Millard Tawes Clam Bake and Crab Feast in Crisfield Wednesday. Here’s a gallery of photos from the hot and steamy event.

Collins: Time for the state prosecutor to get involved?

Two intertwined issues exploded last week in what some consider a constitutional crisis, but this dispute is a bit overblown. The showdown was initially between Gov. Larry Hogan and the legislature over whether or not Dennis Schrader could be paid after being appointed acting secretary of health. The plot thickened, however, when it was revealed that Schrader’s nomination was pulled before a vote because Senate President Mike Miller allegedly attempted to secure an unethical—possibly illegal—quid pro quo as the cost of confirmation.

Maryland Divided Part 1: Rural counties hope to gain political clout

The first in a five-part series in the divide between rural Maryland and the rest of the state. Earlier this year when Gov. Larry Hogan took the stage in Annapolis at P.A.C.E., a conference dedicated to Western Maryland, he opened with the following: “When I was sworn in two years ago, I said the war on rural Maryland was over — and I meant what I said.”

Opinion: Small business implores Gov. Hogan to keep veto promise on sick leave

While the administration continues to focus on pro-business policies, the legislature proved this year with the passage of House Bill 1 that they are determined to run interference, writes Mike O’Halloran of the National Federation of Independent Business. While the governor and his team focus on deregulation, legislators are attempting to mandate the amount of time off an employee can take from their job.