State Roundup: Despite pressure from counties, Hogan hesitant to restore restrictions

State Roundup: Despite pressure from counties, Hogan hesitant to restore restrictions

Photo by pburka with Flickr Creative Commons License

HOGAN HESITANT ON MORE RESTRICTIONS: Gov. Larry Hogan said Tuesday that it’s too soon to tighten restrictions on businesses even as health officers from Maryland’s five largest counties and Baltimore City are asking the state to consider renewed requirements on bars, restaurants and other establishments to curb the recent rise in coronavirus cases, Jeff Barker of the Sun reports.

  • County leaders, however appear hesitant to act on their own despite having the ability under Hogan’s reopening plan to have stronger restrictions in place, Bryan Sears reports in the Daily Record.
  • Effective at 9 a.m. on Thursday, Baltimore County will require everyone age 2 and older to wear face coverings in all indoor public spaces to slow the spread of coronavirus, Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski Jr. announced on Tuesday, Marcus Dieterle of Baltimore Fishbowl reports.
  • In announcing the mask order, reports Bruce DePuyt of Maryland Matters, Olszewski expressed frustration with Hogan, who he said broke off communication with leaders of the state’s most populous subdivisions “more than two months ago.” Olszewski also said Maryland would benefit from a more uniform set of rules.

COVID INFECTIONS CONTINUE TO RISE: For the third time in four days, the number of new cases over a 24-hour period exceeded 800, according to the Maryland Department of Health, Greg Swatek of the Frederick News-Post reports. The big increases Tuesday (860) and Sunday (925) represent the biggest spike in confirmed cases in nearly two months and pushed the overall total in Maryland close to 80,000 (79,545).

  • New cases in Worcester County, where the resort town of Ocean City is located, have risen faster this week than almost any other jurisdiction in the state, although infection rates there remain far below the most heavily infected counties, Christine Condon and Meredith Cohn report in the Sun.
  • Two-dozen cases of COVID-19 were announced Tuesday among Carroll County residents not living in congregate living facilities, one day after 23 such cases were reported, Brian Compere of the Carroll County Times reports.
  • Montgomery County’s health officer said there are no imminent plans to reinstate COVID-19 restrictions, but local officials will “continue to monitor” data to determine if more stringent actions are needed to slow the virus’ spread, Dan Schere and Caitlynn Peetz report in Bethesda Beat.
  • Some employees at UPMC Western Maryland have tested positive for COVID-19, but the hospital system will not release numbers or details, writes Teresa McMinn for the Cumberland Times-News.

NY ADDS MD TO QUARANTINE ADVISORY: As Maryland’s tally of new confirmed cases of the coronavirus continued to climb Tuesday, New York added Maryland to its list of states under its quarantine travel advisory. Under the advisory, Marylanders must self-isolate for two weeks and get a coronavirus test if they are visiting New York, New Jersey or Connecticut, Nathan Ruiz of the Sun reports.

COST OF ELECTION? ABOUT $20M: The head of the Maryland State Board of Elections says it will take about $20 million to implement Gov. Larry Hogan’s plan for the November election and has asked the state’s budget secretary to approve the expense, Ovetta Wiggins of the Post reports.

  • Bennett Leckrone of Maryland Matters writes that mailing every voter a mail-in ballot application as Hogan ordered will cost the state an additional $5.6 million alone, Election Administrator Linda H. Lamone wrote in a letter Tuesday to state officials.

MD OBAMACARE GAINS 58,000 ENROLLEES: Maryland’s Obamacare health insurance marketplace gained 58,000 new enrollees since that start of the year, thanks to tax season and a global pandemic, Morgan Eichensehr reports for the Baltimore Business Journal. .

SEN. CARTER: RENTERS CONCERNED ABOUT EVICTIONS: Sen. Jill Carter (D-Baltimore City) said some Marylanders have expressed concern that they might be evicted from their homes during the coronavirus pandemic even though there are restrictions to protect people from being kicked out of their homes, writes Bryan Renbaum for Maryland Reporter.

MOSBY DECLINES MOST QUESTIONS ON TRAVEL COMPANY: Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby has taken to social media to defend her out-of-town trips, calling coverage of them unfair, while declining to answer many questions about the travel company she incorporated last year, Mark Reutter of Baltimore Brew reports.

PG COUNCIL TABLES TAX PROPOSAL: The Prince George’s County Council on Tuesday unanimously tabled a measure that would have asked voters whether to allow the council to weaken the homestead tax credit, Rachel Chason of the Post reports. Residents vociferously objected to the proposed ballot measure, which could have caused property tax bills for homeowners to rise more quickly.

ARUNDEL TOP COP TO RETIRE AMID CHANGES: Anne Arundel County Police Chief Timothy Altomare announced his retirement in a surprise move Tuesday night, saying he was calling it quits because he won’t stand for efforts to remove the teeth from policing, a movement he believes will endanger the public and police, citing a spike in violent crime, Alex Mann reports in the Capital Gazette.

ARUNDEL TO CLARIFY USE-OF-FORCE POLICY: Changes are coming to one county police department’s use of force policies for chokeholds and neck restraints, writes Bryan Sears for the Daily Record. Anne Arundel County Executive Steuart Pittman said Tuesday that he expects to announce an updated policy clarifying police use of  force.

MO CO SEEKS MORE PUBLIC COMMENT ON TOLL ROAD REPORT: Montgomery County officials are pressing the Maryland Department of Transportation to allow more public comment time on an 18,000-page report on a proposed I-495/I-270 widening project, Louis Peck reports in Bethesda Beat.

REMEMBERING JOHN LEWIS: In a column for Maryland Reporter, Sherman Howell of Howard County writes a remembrance of the late U.S. Rep. John Lewis from their early days marching for civil rights and participating in voter registration drives in the south.

About The Author

Cynthia Prairie

cynthiaprairie@gmail.com
https://www.chestertelegraph.org/

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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