PRINCE GEORGE’S POLICE CHIEF RESIGNS AFTER NAACP REPORT FILED IN FEDERAL COURT: Prince George’s County Police Chief Hank Stawinski resigned Thursday, effective immediately, following a 94-page report from the American Civil Liberties Union that detailed racial bias and discrimination toward officers of color, Zeke Hartner reports for WTOP.
- His resignation comes as the NAACP was considering a vote of no confidence Thursday evening, reports Tracee Wilkins and NBC Washington staff. The explosive report was filed in federal court on Thursday and included a failure to investigate allegations and support whistleblowers.
- Local NAACP head Bob Ross said he was pleased to see Stawinski resign and that members spent their chapter meeting talking about what they want to see in the next police chief, Emily Davies and Rachel Chason report for the Post.
- County Executive Angela Alsobrooks is due to hold a press conference Friday addressing Stawinski’s departure, Tyler Waldman reports for WBAL NewsRadio.
JUNETEENTH MEANING AMPLIFIED THIS YEAR: Dozens of businesses and organizations in the Baltimore area are giving employees the day off for Juneteenth to commemorate the abolition of slavery, reports Ethan McLeod for the Baltimore Business Journal.
- The Downtown Partnership of Baltimore is spotlighting black-owned businesses in a celebration of Juneteenth, Lisa Robinson reports for WBAL-TV.
- In Baltimore, the holiday’s celebrations will grapple with the question: “Are we really free?” as it comes in the wake of George Floyd, a black man who died under the knee of a white police officer in Minneapolis, Jonathan Pitts reports for the Sun.
COMMENTARY: FOP CONTRACT WILL IMPACT MOCO POLICE REFORM: If Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich intends any serious reforms to the Montgomery County Police Department, he will have to deal with a powerful document, his own contract with the Fraternal Order of Police that gives the union substantial authority, Adam Pagnucco writes for Seventh State.
RALLY AGAINST RACISM, POLICE BRUTALITY HELD IN WESTERN HOCO: Hundreds of Howard County residents rallied in western Howard County against systemic racism and police brutality, Ana Faguy reports for Baltimore Sun Media.
DEFYING THE ODDS: Democrats outnumber Republicans nearly 10-1 in Baltimore City, but Shannon Wright has convinced herself that she has a decent shot at defying those odds and becoming the city’s first GOP mayor since the1960s, Bryan Renbaum reports for MarylandReporter.com.
- Wright hopes her message that the city needs change is powerful enough to buoy her campaign above its inherent challenges, Yvonne Wenger reports for the Sun.
MD SETS COVID TESTING GOAL FOR LOCALS: When the Maryland Department of Health announced a goal to test 10% of each jurisdiction’s population for COVID-19, Carroll County’s health officer said he supports testing those who need or want it but the county will not be just trying to be meet a quota, Mary Grace Keller reports for the Carroll County Times.
- The Maryland Association of Counties blog Conduit Street provides a copy of the June 18 letter stating the testing goal, Michael Sanderson writes.
ELECTIONS BOARD GRAPPLES WITH PRIMARY CHALLENGES AS IT MOVES FORWARD: The Maryland Board of Elections still has many questions about how it will run November elections, which could still be entirely in-person, entirely vote-by-mail or a mix of the two, Bennett Leckrone reports for Maryland Matters. As they consider logistics, the board is beginning to conduct a lengthy review of the June primary.
- The Maryland Board of Elections agreed Thursday to survey local election boards across the state about whether they believe a privacy envelope should be included with vote-by-mail ballots for upcoming elections after Montgomery elections officials requested privacy envelopes, Emily Opilo reports for the Sun.
- And state elections officials vowed that they would learn from the mistakes of the June primary election even as they praised “out in the trenches” staff and local elections officials, Bryan Sears reports for The Daily Record.
HOGAN REVEALS FIVE YEAR SCAN STILL CANCER-FREE: Five years to the day from his diagnosis, Gov. Larry Hogan found he remains cancer-free, Tyler Waldman reports for WBAL NewsRadio.
- Hogan posted the news to social media, Byrna Zumer reports for WBFF Fox45. He was diagnosed five years ago with aggressive B-cell, non-Hodgkin Lymphoma.
UNEMPLOYMENT TRENDS DOWN, STILL HIGH: Last week’s filings for first-time unemployment in Maryland continue the three-month trend in which each week’s report dramatically exceeds the largest number of claims for any week of the Great Recession, Bryan Sears reports for The Daily Record. Nearly 42,000 people filed for first-time benefits, a decrease from the previous week.
- And the Maryland Department of Labor reported Thursday that it has made progress on the unemployment claims backlog and has processed more than 93% of the nearly 540,000 unemployment claims that have been filed in the state since the coronavirus pandemic began in early March, leaving almost 35,000 claims in an adjudication backlog, Nathan Ruiz reports for the Sun.
CHANGING HIS NAME: The CEO of the Anne Arundel County Public in Maryland shares his decision to change his name after learning the great-grandfather he was named after got his name from Wade Hampton III, a Confederate general and slave owner, an audio version of the story produced and edited by Andrea Hsu, Elena Burnett and Justine Kenin describes on All Things Considered for NPR.
NEW NUMBERS SHOW VIRUS TOLL IN CARROLL’S BLACK RESIDENTS: The rate of infection – 7% — for black Carroll countians is almost double the U.S. Census’ percentage of black residents in the county, Brian Compere in the Carroll County Times reports on the first snapshot of Carroll coronavirus cases by race and ethnicity.
COMMENTARY: SCHOOLS SHOULD SEIZE THIS MOMENT: Former Maryland State Superintendent David Hornbeck opines for Maryland Matters that this moment will never return for hundreds of thousands of Maryland children, and state leaders should seize it to create the type of learning environment that addresses two viruses: COVID-19 and racism.
CALLS FOR FEDERAL COVID RELIEF, LOCALS OFFERING GRANTS, FACING CUTS: Maryland’s local officials are pushing for Senate action on the HEROES Act, the $3 trillion COVID-19 relief bill stalled in the Senate, John Lee reports for WYPR. Sen. Ben Cardin says action is needed before local budgets go into effect at the fiscal year change of July 1.
- Montgomery County is looking at budget cuts facing a projected pandemic-related revenue shortfall of up to $600 million, Rebecca Tan reports for the Post.
- Frederick County will be doling out funding to 885 businesses and farmers through its $5 million JumpStart grant program, Erika Riley reports for the Frederick News-Post.
MD DREAMERS CELEBRATE COURT VICTORY: The U.S. Supreme Court’s decision Thursday to keep a federal program in place “brought relief to thousands of immigrants living in Maryland without permanent legal status,” Thalia Juarez reports for the Sun.
- For Baltimore’s Monica Camacho Perez, it was the moment she realized her dream for becoming a U.S. citizen is still alive, Jamie Costello reports for WMAR.
MOCO BEGINS NEXT PHASE OF REOPENING: With Montgomery County seeing less than 1% of new COVID-19 cases, it will begin its next phase of reopening on Friday, which allows people to dine indoors, use gyms and gather in groups of up to 50 people, Caitlynn Peetz writes for Bethesda Beat.
MALLS REOPEN FOR INDOOR GUESTS: The Valley Mall in Hagerstown will be re-opening its inside stores on Saturday with reduced hours and virus precautions, Mike Lewis reports for the Hagerstown Herald-Mail.
- Towson Town Center will also be re-opening Saturday, Taylor Deville reports for Baltimore Sun Media.
FREDERICK AMONG HISTORIC PRESERVATION GRANTS: One of Frederick’s oldest buildings and a piece of Brunswick’s railroad history are among 10 properties around Maryland to receive preservation grants through the state’s Maryland Historical Trust, Ryan Marshall reports for the Frederick News-Post.
GARRETT REPORTS HIGH TOURISM NUMBERS BEFORE PANDEMIC IMPACT: Before the pandemic, Garrett County was on track for another record-breaking year for tourism, its 10th straight year of rising tourism metrics, the staff of the Garrett County Republican reports.
LOBBYIST JOINS NATIONAL FIRM: Annapolis lobbyist J. William Pitcher is joining the national lobbying firm Husch Blackwell Strategies, which established a Maryland practice earlier this year, Josh Kurtz writes for Maryland Matters.