HOGAN TARGETS ‘ROAD KILL BILL’: Gov. Larry Hogan said Wednesday that 11 Montgomery County transportation projects would be canceled if state lawmakers didn’t repeal a new law that requires transportation projects to be ranked before they receive state funding, Doug Tallman reports for Bethesda Magazine.
- Hogan said his “top priority” next year will be repealing the law, which he dubbed “the road kill bill,” which he says requires him to stop work on nearly every transportation project in Maryland, Erin Cox of the Sun reports. That characterization is contradicted by an advisory letter from the office of the state attorney general, which says the governor can choose which transportation projects to pay for.
- “It will wreak havoc on the entire state transportation system,” the governor said at a news conference Wednesday. The Post’s Josh Hicks writes that to emphasize his point, Hogan displayed poster boards with dozens of proposed road projects that he said would not receive funding under the rating program.
- Hogan’s interpretation of the bill would kill every current transportation project in Frederick and most other counties. But Democratic lawmakers say Hogan has incorrectly interpreted the bill and is using the measure as a “scapegoat” for overspending the state’s Transportation Trust Fund, reports Danielle Gaines for the Frederick News Post.
- Hogan listed 66 projects across the state that he said the legislation would kill, including improvements to Interstate 81 and the Interstate 70-Md. 65 interchange, both priority projects in Washington County, Tamela Baker of the Hagerstown Herald-Mail reports.
- Hogan’s news conference and responses from Democratic lawmakers who support the bill were peppered with charges of political motivations and accusations about misrepresentations of the new law, Bryan Sears writes for the Daily Record.
‘AFFIRMATIVE CONSENT’ BILL: A state delegate from Montgomery County wants to require local public schools to teach students about “affirmative consent” during seventh- and 10th-grade sex education classes, Bethany Rodgers writes for Bethesda Magazine. The drafted legislation would incorporate the consent concept in a curriculum that already covers pregnancy prevention, HIV/AIDS education and awareness of sexually transmitted diseases.
MO CO DEM CHIEF: Dave Kunes, a local party activist who is currently the chief of staff for Montgomery County Council member Tom Hucker, Tuesday night was elected chairman of the Montgomery County Democratic Central Committee — but only after a contentious meeting in which tensions that have plagued the organization in recent years were on full display, Louis Peck is reporting for Bethesda Beat.
ASKING TRUMP: Fraser Smith and Kenneth Burns, of the WYPR news team, talk about the Christmas wish list newly inaugurated Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh delivered to President-elect Donald Trump when he was in town for the Army-Navy game.
ROBOCALL SUIT: A request to dismiss charges that former campaign operatives for Anne Arundel County Councilman Michael Peroutka broke state campaign laws with a robocall was denied Tuesday in District Court, setting up a trial more than two years after the election ended, Pat Furgurson reports for the Annapolis Capital.
SRB & ASSOCIATES: Former Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake said Wednesday she has launched a consulting firm to advise politicians and businesses, writes Luke Broadwater in the Sun. Called SRB & Associates, Rawlings-Blake’s firm offers “strategic planning for businesses” and “campaign consulting for candidates.”