State Roundup: Legislative redistricting map upheld; HoCo exec Ball questioned on campaign payments to county staff

State Roundup: Legislative redistricting map upheld; HoCo exec Ball questioned on campaign payments to county staff

The Maryland Court of Appeals approved use of this final legislative map, saying it was constitutional. For larger images of districts go to

HIGH COURT UPHOLDS LEGISLATIVE REDISTRICTING MAP: The state’s highest court has rejected three challenges to the General Assembly’s map redrawing its legislative districts. Bryan Sears/The Daily Record.

  • The ruling allows the new districts for electing members of the General Assembly to go into effect for the July 19 primary elections without further delay. The filing deadline for candidates wishing to appear on the ballot is Friday at 9 p.m. Bryn Stole/The Baltimore Sun.
  • The ruling, signed by Chief Judge Joseph M. Getty, comes less than two weeks after Gov. Larry Hogan (R) agreed to sign a new congressional map into law, ending a legal challenge over the redrawing of the state’s eight congressional districts. Ovetta Wiggins/The Washington Post.
  • The order stated that the high court judges agreed that the legislative redistricting plan enacted into law in January by a Democratic majority in the General Assembly met with the requirements of the U.S. and Maryland constitutions. Bennett Leckrone/Maryland Matters.

Howard County Executive Calvin Ball joined local and state officials at a news conference in 2021. File photo by Bryan Renbaum/

CRITICS SAY BALL VIOLATED HOWARD COUNTY ETHICS LAW: Howard County Executive Calvin Ball paid four county employees more than $101,000 to do consulting work for his re-election campaign with more than 50% of that money going to his sister-in-law in a position that some say violated the county law. Jamila Ratliff was until recently responsible for handling Public Information Act requests related to the county executive’s office. She is now the chair of Ball’s re-election campaign. Bryan Renbaum/Maryland Reporter.

IN HER FINAL SESSION, SEN. KELLEY CELEBRATED: Quiet but firm, state Sen. Delores Kelley, who is retiring after 31 years in the General Assembly, led the Senate Finance Committee from the back of the committee room, watching members ping-pong arguments back and forth, stopping when things got too heated or time began to slip away. According to her vice chair, Brian J. Feldman, Kelley is “tough, tough, tough” and not afraid to speak her mind. Kelley’s Senate colleagues characterize her as a mentor, a trailblazer, a lifetime learner and a “classy lady” who is willing to compromise with those she differs from ideologically. Hannah Gaskill/Maryland Matters.

POPULAR HOGAN STAYS ‘ON BRAND:’ Gov. Larry Hogan has consistently enjoyed sky-high approval ratings for a typical governor. Those poll numbers are made all the more astounding because he is a Republican in heavily Democratic Maryland, and those numbers have endured deep into the last months of his second term. Todd Eberly, a political science professor at St. Mary’s College of Maryland, said Hogan’s personal brand grew when he announced he was undergoing treatment in 2015 for an aggressive blood cancer. Part of that brand also includes some split personality when it comes to the General Assembly. Bryan Sears/The Daily Record.

MENTAL HEALTH PROVIDERS UNDER STRESS: Mental health and addiction service providers say they’re stressed, with patient demand up and staff levels down during the coronavirus pandemic. Some may have to scale back services, or even leave the Medicaid program. Adding to the pressure in Maryland is a bill that providers weren’t expecting to be so high. Meredith Cohn/The Baltimore Sun.

CARROLL COUNTY BILLS PASS IN 2022 GENERAL ASSEMBLY: All of the Carroll County-specific bills introduced by the county delegation to the Maryland General Assembly passed during the 2022 session, which adjourned earlier this week. Two statewide bills proposed by Del. Haven Shoemaker, a Republican representing Carroll County, did not. Madison Bateman/The Carroll County Times.

HOGAN, ALSOBROOKS CELEBRATE $400M FOR PG DEVELOPMENT: For the second time within a week, Gov. Larry Hogan visited Prince George’s County on Wednesday and stood alongside County Executive Angela Alsobrooks to tout economic development. The two leaders returned to nearby Largo Town Center Metro station to promote the $400 million legislation signed into law Tuesday. William Ford/The Washington Informer.

  • The two talked at length about their shared vision of a resurgent Largo/Landover area brimming with new facilities and the legislation they co-championed during this year’s General Assembly session to make some of it possible. They also expressed confidence that the U.S. General Services Administration will decide later this year to build a new FBI headquarters in Prince George’s. Bruce DePuyt/Maryland Matters.

DEL. BUCKNEL CONSIDERS RUN TO UNSEAT REP. TRONE: Armed with a new poll suggesting he could run competitively against U.S. Rep. David Trone (D), Del. Jason C. Buckel (R-Allegany), the House minority leader in Annapolis, said Wednesday he is considering a late entry into the race to take on the wealthy congressman. Josh Kurtz/Maryland Matters.

KING AD HITS AIRWAVES IN RACE FOR GOV: Former U.S. education secretary John B. King Jr. became the latest candidate to hit the airwaves selling his personal story to voters on Wednesday, as the highly competitive governor’s race shifts into a new gear. Erin Cox/The Washington Post.

NEUMAN DROPS RUN, SUPPORTS FRANCHOT FOR GOV: Laura Neuman, the only woman in the crowded Democratic primary for Maryland governor, is dropping out of the race and throwing her support behind state Comptroller Peter Franchot, the Franchot campaign announced Thursday. Ovetta Wiggins/The Washington Post.

DEL. LEWIS DROPS RACE TO SUCCEED REP. BROWN: Del. Jazz Lewis (D-Prince George’s), the 33-year-old liberal Annapolis lawmaker and protege of House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer (D-Md.), has dropped out of the Democratic primary race in Maryland’s 4th Congressional District, citing a combination of lack of fundraising and viability issues in a race that includes prominent Prince George’s County figures. Meagan Flynn/The Washington Post.

MOSBY CAMPAIGN VIDEO TAKEN DOWN OVER COPYRIGHT ISSUE: Less than 24 hours after State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby announced her plan to run for re-election with a new campaign ad, the video has been taken down due to copyright issues. Fern Shen/Baltimore Brew.

TAX HOLIDAY TO END, GAS PRICES EXPECTED TO JUMP: Gas prices across Maryland have hovered about 35 to 40 cents below the national average for the past month because of a 30-day holiday on collection of the state fuel tax — but with the tax break in effect only through 11:59 p.m. Saturday, they are set to jump well above $4 a gallon Sunday. Scott Dance and Alison Knezevich/The Baltimore Sun.

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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