State Roundup, May 7, 2019

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HOGAN WANTS TO ‘CLEAN HOUSE’ ON UMMS BOARD: After allegations of self-dealing rocked the University of Maryland Medical System’s board of directors, Gov. Larry Hogan said he wants to “clean house” and will refuse to reappoint most — if not all — of the current board members, Luke Broadwater of the Sun reports.

HOGAN OK’s HENSON FOR HOUSE: Gov. Larry Hogan announced Monday that he approved the appointment of Shaneka Henson to an open seat in the Maryland House of Delegates, Pamela Wood reports in the Sun. Henson will fill the Annapolis-area seat left vacant by the death of longtime House Speaker Michael E. Busch last month.

YOUNG CRAB POPULATION SOARS: There are nearly twice as many juvenile crabs in Chesapeake Bay waters as there were a year ago, according to an annual population survey. Scott Dance reports in the Sun that scientists in Maryland and Virginia found that in 2019, the bay’s crabs are at their most plentiful in seven years.

NEW RAPE KIT LAW DOESN’T ADDRESS BACKLOG: A law requiring law enforcement agencies to submit qualified rape kits for testing within 30 days of receipt will become effective in January 2020, but it does not address the thousands of untested kits currently existing in the state today, Glynis Kazanjian writes in Maryland Matters. According to the Office of the Attorney General, there are over 6,000 untested sexual assault evidence kits in Maryland.

OPINION: TRUTH, THEN RECONCILIATION ON RACISM: Post editorial page editor Fred Hiatt writes about conversations about America’s past that horrifically included lynchings and the current of racism that continues to flow through the United State’s today. Attempts are rising to spur conversations, and Maryland’s General Assembly last month created the nation’s first truth and reconciliation commission on lynching. It will hold hearings around the state for three years, seek testimony from relatives of victims and others, and publish documents.

COURT OKs TAXPAYER SUIT AGAINST BA CO: A lawsuit against Baltimore County can move forward after the Maryland Court of Appeals ruled that taxpayers have the right to sue jurisdictions to prevent waste or mismanagement of their tax dollars in a case experts say could open the door to similar lawsuits, Libby Solomon reports in the Towson Times. The ruling was based on residents who sued Baltimore County in 2014 alleging mismanagement of the county’s animal shelter.

DUTCH TOUTS VIOLENCE PREVENTION PROGRAM: A Violence Intervention Program at Shock Trauma has seen success in keeping patients out of their hospital beds in the future by evaluating patients and providing them social services while they’re bedridden and recovering. The program, which was developed in 1998, has been recognized nationally, and a bill in Congress could expand similar programs. U.S. Rep. Dutch Ruppersberger was at the trauma center on Monday to announce that he’s reintroducing legislation to provide funding for 10 violence prevention programs across the country, Danielle Gaines reports in Maryland Matters.

2 LONG-TIME CITY COUNCILMEMBERS WON’T SEEK RE-ELECTION: When Mary Pat Clarke and Ed Reisinger leave their long-held Baltimore City Council seats, having both announced Monday they would not seek reelection in 2020, more than 50 years of experience will exit a City Hall already in flux after Democratic Mayor Catherine Pugh’s recent resignation, write Ian Duncan and Jean Marbella for the Sun.

ARUNDEL TO ALLOW FARM-BREWERIES: The Anne Arundel County Council voted Monday to allow breweries as conditional uses on farms within residential low density and R1 zones, Chase Cook of the Annapolis Capital reports. Councilwoman Amanda Fiedler, R-Arnold, introduced the legislation after concerns that wineries had more options than breweries.