State Roundup: Congressmen knock Md. jobless response; defunding police kicked around

State Roundup: Congressmen knock Md. jobless response; defunding police kicked around

Sheriff Chuck Jenkins supervising security in downtown Thurmont for the G8 summit in 2012. Photo by CraigShipp.com Photos with Flickr Creative Commons License

UPGRADE TO STATE JOBLESS BENEFIT WEBSITE URGED: Maryland congressional leaders are urging Gov. Larry Hogan to make more improvements to the state’s new Beacon One-Stop unemployment benefits website because they say constituents are not receiving their benefits in a timely manner, McKenna Oxenden of the Sun reports.

AFSCME: LABOR DEPT. COVID RESPONSE LACKING: Hannah Gaskill of Maryland Matters reports that, contradicting the state, Sean Santmyire, an AFSCME Council 3 union member and job specialist for the Maryland Department of Labor, said Tuesday that the agency’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic has been “poor.” “Shortage of equipment, training and staffing has placed our membership in dangerous positions,” he said.

POLICE ON FUTURE OF POLICING: Frederick County Sheriff Chuck Jenkins said recent proposals calling for the defunding and dismantling of police departments – as some have been calling for – would have disastrous consequences if implemented, reports Bryan Renbaum for MarylandReporter. In 2013, Camden, N.J., dismantled and rebuilt its police department. It is the only U.S. city that to have done that.

MO CO COUNCIL PONDERS ‘DEFUNDING’ POLICE: Montgomery County officials are hearing pleas from some in the community that the police department needs to be “defunded” in the wake of the death of a black man in Minneapolis last month, writes Dan Schere in Bethesda Beat. Defunding refers to redirecting some money from policing into social services, mental health treatment and other community programs.

OPINION: DISBAND AND REMAKE: In an op-ed for the Sun, David Troy, who calls himself “a white, middle-aged software executive with significant privilege,” urges the city of Baltimore to disband its police department and rethink “our approach to public safety, peace building and law enforcement.”

TOP JUDGE URGES LAWYERS TO ENSURE JUSTICE FOR ALL: Maryland’s top judge called on the state’s judiciary and its 40,000 attorneys Tuesday night to ensure that racial minorities and the indigent are not shortchanged in the civil and criminal justice system, Steve Lash of the Daily Record is reporting.

RACIAL INJUSTICE PROTESTS: Donovan Conaway of the Capital Gazette reports that more than 200 protesters marched up Main Street to the Maryland State House in honor of George Floyd being laid to rest in Houston, Texas, on Tuesday.

  • With protests in Frederick against racism and police brutality in their second week, both protestors and organizers are thinking about what the next phase of the movement will look like, including moving online and into conference rooms and community centers, Ryan Marshall of the Frederick News-Post reports.

SCOTT DECLARES VICTORY IN DEM MAYORAL PRIMARY: Brandon Scott has won the crowded Democratic primary for Baltimore mayor, making good on his campaign to “change the guard” at City Hall and usher in a new generation of leadership. With less than 2,000 votes to be counted, Scott was ahead of Sheila Dixon by more than 2,300 votes, Talia Richman and Emily Opilo of the Sun write.

  • The Post’s Paul Schwartzman writes that Brandon Scott, president of the Baltimore City Council, declared victory Tuesday night in the city’s crowded Democratic mayoral primary.
  • The victory puts Scott in a strong position to be the next mayor of the struggling city since Democrats outnumber Republicans 10-1 in Baltimore, and the general election in November is mostly seen as a formality. Regina Garcia Cano of the AP reports.

OP-ED: THE FUTURE OF HOWARD SCHOOLS: In an op-ed for the Sun, Michael Martirano, superintendent for Howard County Schools, writes about what Howard County schools might look like if children are allowed to return to in the fall. It’s a question that many are seeking to answer across the country.

COVID-19 CASES AROUND THE STATE: Yvonne Wenger of the Sun writes that the Baltimore City public works acting director told the City Council late Tuesday that a coronavirus outbreak among staff at the city’s eastside solid waste yard will cause Baltimore recycling services to be suspended for three weeks.

  • The Prince George’s County Department of Corrections has reported six new cases of the coronavirus after completing 521 tests over three weeks, Emily Davies reports for the Post.
  • Hospitalizations and the positivity rate related to COVID-19 in Maryland continued falling, while the number of confirmed cases and related deaths nudged higher Tuesday. The state health department reported that hospitalizations fell by nine over the last 24 hours and now stand at 970, Greg Swatek reports for the Frederick News-Post.

MD HOSPITALS GET PPE – AT HIGH PRICES: Maryland hospitals are now able to acquire personal protective equipment for their employees thanks to a global increase in production capacity. But they are paying exorbitant prices, a hospitals association executive told the General Assembly on Tuesday, Bruce DePuyt of Maryland Matters reports.

WA CO BOARD HESITATES OVER REOPENING: Despite hearing from a state senator Tuesday that the Washington County Board of Commissioners have the power to make more decisions to help businesses reopen, the local board didn’t make any official moves Tuesday, Julie Greene of the Hagerstown Herald-Mail reports.

PASTOR CHARGED IN ASSAULT OF WBFF-TV JOURNALISTS: A Baltimore pastor who previously ran unsuccessfully for City Council has been charged with assaulting and robbing Fox 45 journalists during recent protests outside City Hall, according to online court records and a Baltimore police report, Jessica Anderson and McKenna Oxenden are reporting for the Sun.

NEW PORT CHIEF, SHA ADMIN NAMED: William Doyle, a former federal maritime commissioner, has been tapped to be the new executive director of the Port of Baltimore and the Maryland Port Administration. He will start his new role effective July 22, Jessica Iannetta of the Baltimore Business Journal reports.

PUGH EXPECTED TO PLEAD GUILTY TO MISDEMEANOR: Former Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh is expected to plead guilty to a misdemeanor charge of perjury in state court, the prosecutor says, before she departs later this month for federal prison in Alabama, Tim Prudente of the Sun is reporting.

About The Author

Cynthia Prairie

Contributing Editor Cynthia Prairie has been a newspaper editor since 1979, when she began working at The Raleigh Times. Since then, she has worked for The Baltimore News American, The Chicago Sun-Times, The Prince George’s Journal and Baltimore County newspapers in the Patuxent Publishing chain, including overseeing The Jeffersonian when it was a two-day a week business publication. Cynthia has won numerous state awards, including the Maryland State Bar Association’s Gavel Award. Besides compiling and editing the daily State Roundup, she runs her own online news outlet, The Chester Telegraph. If you have additional questions or comments contact Cynthia at: cynthiaprairie@gmail.com

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