State Roundup: Competing anti-crime plans

State Roundup: Competing anti-crime plans

BOTH PARTIES RELEASE COMPETING CRIME PLANS: Baltimore Mayor Brandon Scott and Gov. Larry Hogan held a private meeting Thursday to discuss the pressing issue of crime, as lawmakers promoted competing plans for combating violence. Pamela Wood and Emily Opilo/The Baltimore Sun

  • The two parties laid out their agendas during separate meetings with reporters. And while both sides agree work is needed to reduce violent crime there seem to be few areas of bipartisan agreement on solutions. Bryan Sears/The Daily Record
  • The dueling partisan showdown came on the heels of Governor Hogan touting his anti-violent crime package Wednesday night in his final State of the State address. Joel McCord/WYPR
  • Maryland Senate Democrats rolled out their plans Thursday to address rising crime in the state, calling for a four-pronged approach. Sen. President Bill Ferguson pointed to the coronavirus pandemic as a major factor in the crime surge, especially among young people. Kate Ryan/WTOP
  • Hogan and Scott called their meeting productive, and Scott said the governor not only understood his crime fighting plan, but now knows first-hand the passion and urgency behind his priority to reduce crime. David Collins/WBAL TV
  • In the city, high-level resignations are coming amid the crisis in crime, including the deputy mayor for public safety, who will work for the Department of Justice. Keith Daniels/WBFF

BILL INTRODUCED TO LEGALIZE RECREATIONAL MARIJUANA: Lawmakers on Thursday introduced a measure to legalize recreational marijuana for adults that supporters say would put the state on a path for an equitable cannabis industry, if voters approve it in November. Brian Witte/Associated Press

  • The chairman of a key House committee introduced the recreational marijuana legislation on Thursday, offering a multi-pronged implementation plan that could ease tensions with the state Senate. The bill would automatically expunge the conviction of anyone previously found guilty of a simple possession charge if that charge was the only one against them. Bruce DePuyt/Maryland Matters.

DELEGATE PUSHES FOR CAMERAS IN SPECIAL ED CLASSROOMS: For the last two years, legislation requiring cameras in self-contained special education classrooms has failed. This year, Del. Michele Guyton believes she has the support needed for it to succeed. Mallory Sofastaii/WMAR

PEREZ PICKS SNEED FOR VP CANDIDATE: Maryland gubernatorial candidate Tom Perez has named former Baltimore councilwoman Shannon Sneed as his choice for lieutenant governor in the crowded Democratic primary. Ovetta Wiggins/Washington Post

  • Sneed brings both government and communications experience to Perez’s campaign, with her most recent post being regional director to Sen. Chris Van Hollen’s staff. Pamela Wood/The Baltimore Sun
  • Sneed served on the Baltimore City Council from 2016 to 2020, and she and Perez are running in a crowded primary. Associated Press

LANDLORDS’ EVICTION FILING FEE HIKE PROPOSED: Maryland’s attorney general urged state legislators Thursday to raise the landlords’ filing fee in evictions from a near national low of $15 to $80, saying the increase might discourage landlords from initiating eviction proceedings that have become too readily used against tenants in a time of financial hardship. Steve Lash/The Daily Record

COMMENTARY: HOGAN’S SPEECH ON GROUNDHOG DAY: Hogan and Maryland Democratic leaders have been in an awkward, unchanging dance from the minute the governor took office, and this week’s posturing over the State of the State served as a reminder that while Democrats have the numbers in the General Assembly, Hogan has the bully pulpit, a flair for the dramatic, and superior political skills that enable him to win the PR wars just about every time. Josh Kurtz/Maryland Matters

ATTORNEY GENERAL CANDIDATE HAS TIES TO LEAGUE OF THE SOUTH: A former Anne Arundel County Council member who once had ties to the League of the South, an Alabama-based organization that the Southern Poverty Law Center has classified as a hate group, is running to become Maryland’s next attorney general. Michael Anthony Peroutka, an attorney, is also the founder of the Pasadena-based Institute on the Constitution. Ovetta Wiggins/Washington Post

NEW MAPS MEAN SHAKEUP IN HARFORD: Maryland’s new legislative map means uncertainty for Republican House incumbents in Harford County: District 7 Republican Delegates Lauren C. Arikan and Richard K. Impallaria will have to compete with each other in a new single-member district. Bennett Leckrone/Maryland Matters

AIR FORCE VETERAN RUNNING FOR DELEGATE: Air Force veteran Tom Smith is running for the House of Delegates in District 14. Smith, 37, is a Democrat who was a combat medic in Afghanistan and Iraq. Steve Bohnel/Bethesda Beat

CLEAN ENERGY RECEPTION: The Maryland Clean Energy Center’s 2022 Legislative Reception will feature guest legislators and speakers, with a featured panel to discuss Energy & the Built Environment: Strategies Aimed at Addressing Climate Change. This panel session will examine the challenges, opportunities, and recommendations related to building de-carbonization to achieve demand reduction goals from the perspective of consumers, industry, and utilities. Tickets are on sale now for this hybrid event on Feb. 17, with an in-person luncheon in Annapolis. All registrants will receive program recordings.

MONTGOMERY URGES PLANNING OFFICIALS TO BE MORE TRANSPARENT: The Montgomery County Council has asked county planning officials to “encourage transparency” following complaints that they didn’t enforce lobbyist registration requirements or better help the public access some virtual meetings during the pandemic. Katherine Shaver/Washington Post

ANNE ARUNDEL MOVES HIGH SCHOOL START TIME: In the next academic year, high school students in Anne Arundel County will start school an hour later, at 8:30 a.m., as officials make a long-awaited change that is recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics. Rachael Pacella/Capital Gazette

COUNTIES SHIFT MASK REQUIREMENTS: The Board of Carroll County Commissioners voted Thursday to end the mask-wearing requirement in most county government facilities, effective at the start of business on Monday. The board agreed that visitors to the county’s senior centers and community centers must continue to wear masks during activities where 6-foot social distancing is not possible. Madison Bateman/Carroll County Times

  • Coronavirus cases in Frederick County are projected to drop below 20 per 100,000 residents next week, a development that would mean the jurisdiction’s mask mandate would be lifted. Angela Roberts/Frederick News-Post

MARYLANDERS FOR AFFORDABLE RX: Marylanders for Affordable Rx is educating policymakers and the public on the real reasons behind high prescription drug costs and exposing special interests that are out to pad their bottom line at the expense of Maryland’s hardworking people. Across the country and in our state, we see special interests, like Big Pharma and the independent pharmacy lobby, push agendas that would make it harder for patient advocates like pharmacy benefit managers to negotiate for lower prescription drug costs. Learn more and help us stop special interests from increasing our Rx costs. 

STERLING EXPLORING A ST. MARY’S STATES ATTORNEY RUN: Anne Arundel County Assistant States Attorney and former St. Mary’s County Deputy States Attorney Jaymi Sterling is continuing her exploration of running for St. Mary’s County States Attorney. David Higgins/Southern Maryland Chronicle

SOLAR FARM GETS KEY STATE PERMIT: Competitive Power Ventures has secured key state approval in its plan to construct and operate the 200-megawatt Backbone Solar Farm in Garrett County. Staff reports/The Garrett County Republican

About The Author

Meg Tully

Contributing Editor Meg Tully has been covering Maryland politics for more than five years. She has worked for The Frederick News-Post, where she reported during the General Assembly session in Annapolis. She has also worked for The (Hanover) Evening Sun and interned at Baltimore Magazine. Meg has won awards from the Maryland-Delaware-D.C. Press Association for her state and county writing, and a Keystone Press Award for feature writing from the Pennsylvania Newspaper Association. She is a graduate of Franklin & Marshall College in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. If you have additional questions or comments contact Meg at:

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