HOGAN BLASTS TRUMP: Gov. Larry Hogan questions why President Donald Trump didn’t do more to help with testing in a scathing op-ed in the Post adapted from his forthcoming book about the South Korean test kit purchase. He describes waiting for federal leadership before finally arranging test kits from South Korea: “Eventually, it was clear that waiting around for the president to run the nation’s response was hopeless; if we delayed any longer, we’d be condemning more of our citizens to suffering and death.”
TRUMP RESPONSE: REVISIONIST HISTORY: The White House fired back Thursday, with press secretary Kayleigh McEnany saying the “revisionist history” stands in stark contrast to his comments during the March crisis when he praised communication between the president and governors, Jeff Barker and Pamela Wood report for the Sun.
EXPLORING PRESIDENTIAL RUN: As Hogan’s book comes out, Maryland Matter’s Josh Kurtz analyzes what it will reveal about Hogan’s prospects for president in 2024.
STATE SWAPPED TESTS FROM SOUTH KOREA: Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan said Thursday that the state swapped out the original tests purchased from South Korea for newer ones, paying a couple of dollars per kit to “upgrade” them to newer, faster kits, Jayne Miller reports for WBAL TV. The newer tests are in use now, he said. The state spent $9 million in early April to purchase the original kits with much fanfare as the airplane bringing them landed at BWI.
PROTECTED STATUS PROGRAM BRINGS ESSENTIAL WORKERS: U.S. Sen. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) said ending a program that allows people from countries that are either war-torn or disaster-stricken to temporarily stay and work in the U.S. would hurt both Maryland’s and the nation’s economy, Bryan Renbaum reports for Maryland Reporter. The program’s recipients include many essential workers-some of whom are on the frontlines in the fight against the coronavirus, he argued.
- The Trump administration has sought to end these protections for the vast majority of these immigrants, Christine Condon reports for the Sun. The program isn’t meant to provide long-term relief, the administration argues, and some of the disasters that prompted the original issuance of TPS status are no longer an issue.
MOSBY ACCEPTED FREE TRAVEL LAST YEAR: An investigation by Baltimore Brew found that Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby took took 23 trips in 2018 and 2019, accepting $30,000 in reimbursements, including overseas stays in five-star hotels in Berlin and Portugal. Mark Reutter and Ian Round reported.
- Following up on the Brew scoop, Elijah Westbrook reports for WBFF Fox45 News that Baltimore’s top prosecutor is now under fire for the tens of thousands of dollars in free airfare and hotel accommodations she’s accepted to places like Africa, Germany, Portugal and Scotland.
- Mosby defended those frequent trips Joy Lepola reports for WBFF because they “deepened” her knowledge of alternative criminal justice systems. Lepola found that some of the changes made in Baltimore came before the trips mentioned, however.
MORE SCHOOLS DECIDE ON VIRTUAL OPENING: School systems in Maryland, with parents watching anxiously, are starting to make decisions about reopening as they approach a mid-August deadline for decisions with the state, Elizabeth Shwe gives a breakdown for Maryland Matters.
- HOWARD: “The Howard County Public School System will start the 2020-21 academic year with 100% virtual instruction through at least January due to the coronavirus pandemic,” Jacob Calvin Meyer reports for Baltimore Sun Media.
- CHARLES: Charles County Public Schools presented two proposals to teachers, staff, families and community members for the school year: distance learning or a hybrid model of distance learning and in-school instruction, Jamie Anfenson-Comeau reports for Southern Maryland News.
- CARROLL: Carroll County has not yet made a decision on reopening schools, but they heard many different perspectives at a meeting Wednesday night, reports Catalina Righter for the Carroll County Times. The school board will be sending out a survey this week.
UNEMPLOYMENT DOWN: “First-time unemployment claims in Maryland have dropped to their lowest mark in 10 weeks,” Bryan Sears reports for The Daily Record.
BLUE FLAME HAD POLITICAL CONNECTION: Documents obtained by the Sun show that a company that failed to deliver on a $12.5 million deal for COVID-19 supplies had a political connection to help land the deal, Pamela Wood reports for the Sun.
WIDENING OF 495, 270 PROJECTS UNDER FIRE: Transportation planning staff have serious concerns about the draft environmental impact statement for the proposed widening of I-495 and I-270, Louis Peck reports for Bethesda Beat.
ELECTION SET UP TO FAIL? Planning for an in-person election has been a “nightmare” for Baltimore City Election Director Armstead Jones, who notes that many senior centers are declining to serve as polling places at the same time elections officials face millions of dollars in increased costs, Emily Opilo reports for the Sun.
REPORT REVELATIONS ON PG POLICE PRACTICES: Un-redacted information from a report made public Thursday shows Prince George’s officers received no discipline for racial profiling; Black and Latino officers are twice as likely to receive disciplinary charges as their white counterparts; and training has been “deficient” to address hostile work environments, reports William Ford for Washington Informer.
MASKS URGED IN CARROLL: A coalition of leaders in Carroll County is urging residents to wear masks, but a commissioner who has criticized their value in stopping the spread of COVID-19 was notably absent from the statement, reports Brian Compere for the Carroll County Times.
MOCO COUNCIL WANT CHANGE TO STATE SONG, WASHINGTON FOOTBALL TEAM: Montgomery County’s council members are calling for a change to Maryland’s state song, which celebrates the Confederacy, and the name of the Washington football team, Briana Adhikusuma reports for Bethesda Beat. They will have a hearing and vote on a resolution against them on Tuesday.
GARRETT RESIDENTS PART OF BLM PROTEST: About two dozen people, including many from Garrett County, turned out for a Black Lives Matter protest in Terra Alta West Virginia, reports Joseph Hauger for the Garrett County Republican.
FEDERAL CORONAVIRUS AID: Washington County will consider using some federal COVID aid to pay for pandemic-related costs, Julie Greene reports for the Hagerstown Herald-Mail. While a decision is pending, the county is still accepting grant applications from local businesses.
- Maryland Sens. Chris Van Hollen, Ben Cardin and U.S. Rep. Andy Harris announced more than $500,000 in funding to help the Eastern Shore recover from COVID-19, Kelly Broderick reports for WMAR.