State Roundup: Lawmakers push for oversight on Hogan’s toll projects

State Roundup: Lawmakers push for oversight on Hogan’s toll projects

LAWMAKERS PUSH FOR OVERSIGHT ON ROADS PROJECTS: Amid a contract dispute involving the Purple Line that a leading lawmaker described as “very serious,” key members of the General Assembly served notice on Monday that they intend to exercise rigorous oversight over the Hogan administration’s plan to add express toll lanes to the Capital Beltway and Interstate 270, Bruce DePuyt of Maryland Matters reports.

HOGAN FACES CRITICISM FROM GOP: Gov. Larry Hogan is facing some strident criticism about his efforts to ward off the effects of the coronavirus in Maryland from an unlikely source — his own party, writes Bryan Sears for the Daily Record. Hogan certainly has no shortage of legislative Democrats who have criticized him. Since the pandemic began, some Republicans have also expressed concerns. Some, more vocally than others.

NURSING HOMES WEREN’T INSPECTED: As the coronavirus tore through Maryland nursing homes in March and April, state health regulators did not conduct any in-person nursing home inspections for more than a month because there wasn’t personal protective equipment available for the investigators to wear. The Sun’s Scott Dance reports.

COVID HOSPITALIZATIONS DOWN: As of Monday, 602 people in Maryland are hospitalized due to complications from COVID-19, a decrease of six patients compared to Sunday. Officials reported that 370 patients are in acute care units while 232 are in intensive care, Phil Davis reports in the Sun.

  • The number of confirmed coronavirus cases has increased by less than 1% in Montgomery County for nine consecutive days, Dan Schere of Bethesda Beat reports.

BALL SURE PROTESTS ARE SAFE: Howard County Executive Calvin Ball said he is confident that the organizers of local protests against police misconduct are doing everything they can to make sure that participants follow recommended safety guidelines to prevent the spread of COVID-19, Bryan Renbaum of MarylandReporter writes.

PG JUDGE: JAIL PLAN ON COVID ‘REASONABLE:’ Ann Marimow of the Post reports that a federal judge said Monday that Prince George’s County jail officials have made “sufficient progress” and provided a “reasonable” plan for improving conditions to protect inmates from contracting the deadly novel coronavirus.

SYKESVILLE PRISON SEES COVID SPIKE: The Central Maryland Correctional Facility in Sykesville has seen a spike in cases of COVID-19 after conducting universal testing, the Carroll County Health Department announced Monday, writes Brian Compere for the Carroll County Times.

BA CO TEAMS WITH FIRM FOR MORE TESTS: Baltimore County has turned to one of its local medical technology companies to help boost availability of Covid-19 tests for residents. Morgan Eichensehr of the Baltimore Business Journal reports that the county announced Monday it has signed a new supply agreement with Sparks-based BD Integrated Diagnostic Solutions..

RENTAL ASSISTANCE DURING COVID: Calls for Gov. Larry Hogan to create a rental assistance program to stave off COVID-19 related evictions are growing, as some policy experts advocate for alternative solutions, Adam Bednar of the Daily Record reports.

UNEMPLOYMENT RATES DROP: Statewide unemployment rates dropped in May from recent pandemic-related highs in Maryland, Pennsylvania and West Virginia, according to figures released last week, the Hagerstown Herald-Mail reports.

STATE CUTS HIGHWAY DISBURSEMENTS: The Maryland Department of Transportation recently revised its estimates for highway-user revenue disbursements for the current and upcoming fiscal years in May, reducing the amount due to Washington County and its nine municipalities by $1.1 million for both years combined, Julie Greene reports in the Hagerstown Herald-Mail.

JHU FACULTY SEEKS GOVERNING ROLE: Johns Hopkins University faculty are demanding more transparency and a greater role in the governance of the university, saying the administration is imposing financial austerity measures that disproportionately affect the most vulnerable workers, Lix Bowie of the Sun reports.

NAVAL ACADEMY PULLS APPOINTMENT: The Naval Academy has rescinded an offer of appointment to a Maryland student after the institution was notified of racist messages the student made, Heather Mongilio of the Capital Gazette reports. The student, who attended a Montgomery County high school, made racist, transphobic and sexist statements on the chat platform Discord.

UM SOCIOLOGIST IN SPOTLIGHT: Robert McCartney of the Post writes about University of Maryland sociologist Rashawn Ray. Given his expertise, McCartney writes, it comes as little surprise that current events have made him a media and policy star. He specializes in studying why both police and disease are more likely to treat African Americans more harshly than whites.

VAN HOLLEN CALLS FOR TALBOT BOYS REMOVAL: Sen. Chris Van Hollen has added his voice to the chorus calling for a Confederate monument to be removed from the lawn of the Talbot County Circuit Courthouse, Rose Velazquez reports for the Salisbury Daily Times. Built in 1916, the Talbot Boys statue features the names of 84 Confederate soldiers and is topped with a soldier carrying the Confederate battle flag.

CARROLL KIDS FARE WELL: An international organization that advocates for children’s welfare and equity has found that Carroll County is one of the places in the U.S. where children are most protected from circumstances that cut short their childhood experience, Catalina Righter of the Carroll County Times reports.

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 newspaper, The Chester Telegraph. If you have additional questions or comments contact Cynthia at:

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