CORRECTIONS EMPLOYEES TO SPLIT $13M IN WAGE THEFT CASE: State employees in one agency will split more than $13 million to settle allegations of wage theft dating back to the administration of Gov. Larry Hogan (R). The settlement is part of an ongoing investigation by the U.S. Department of Labor into at least two agencies including the Department Public Safety and Correctional Services. It must be voted on by the Board of Public Works. Bryan Sears/Maryland Matters.
HOPKINS STUDY TIES ALCOHOL ABUSE TO GUN VIOLENCE: A report from from The Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Violence Solutions found that about a third of U.S. gun homicides involved heavy drinking — on the part of the perpetrator, the victim, or both — and a quarter of suicides also involved alcohol misuse. Heavy use of alcohol is also a strong predictor of future violence, researchers found. The link between alcohol-use and gun violence has been been largely unexplored. Sarah True/The Baltimore Banner.
OPINION: WE MUST REPEAL THE AUTOMATIC GAS TAX: Beginning July 1, Marylanders will again be paying more at the pump when the gas tax automatically increases by more than 10% making Maryland’s total gas tax 47 cents per gallon, an annual automatic increase that Maryland Democrats rammed through in 2013, which ties the gas tax to the Consumer Price Index or inflation, so that it would increase without a new vote of the General Assembly. Senate Republicans will again propose its repeal and we also will propose a measure to allow the Board of Public Works to suspend the automatic increase when the General Assembly is not in session. Maryland Senate Republican Caucus/MarylandReporter.com.
STATE TO HOLD VIRTUAL COMMENT SESSION ON BAY BRIDGE EXPANSION: Got an opinion on how the Chesapeake Bay Bridge ought to be expanded? The Maryland Transportation Authority wants to hear it Tuesday evening during an online public comment session. Caitlyn Freeman/The Capital Gazette.
DRUG AFFORDABILITY BOARD EDITS RULES AFTER PUBLIC INPUT: As the Maryland Prescription Drug Affordability Board continues to work through regulations for the board’s operations, questions remain about which drugs may be subject to pricing limits in the future. Danielle Brown/Maryland Matters.
NUMBER OF HOUSEHOLDS IN NEED RISE BY 70,000: Government officials, nonprofit leaders and entrepreneurs gathered last week to discuss how to uplift some of Maryland’s low-income families following a report that the COVID pandemic increased the number of households (by 70,000 to 899,789) that were employed yet still struggled to meet basic needs. Danielle Brown/Maryland Matters.
OPINION: REFORM MARYLAND’s BEER, WINE LAWS: Imagine the end of an exceedingly long day. And a trip to the grocery store still awaits. Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to pick up a bottle of wine or some cold beer to enjoy when that long day ends? It is time we stopped wishing for it and it’s time for our lawmakers to make it happen. Progress always wins — and in the case of beer and wine sales in grocery stores, so would Maryland consumers. Len Foxwell/Maryland Matters.
FIVE YEARS AFTER CAPITAL GAZETTE KILLINGS, COMING TOGETHER IN REMEMBRANCE: Five years after the attack on the Capital Gazette, in which five journalists – Rob Hiaasen, Wendi Winters, Gerald Fischman, John McNamara and Rebecca Smith – were killed, the people and their legacies will be remembered in at the memorial in Annapolis. While many colleagues have taken new and quite different jobs, remembering these five will bring us together. Rick Hutzell/The Baltimore Banner.