State Roundup: State Elections Board member quits after arrest on Jan. 6 charges; federal appeals court to hear Md. gun case; ‘No Labels’ group will be on ballot

State Roundup: State Elections Board member quits after arrest on Jan. 6 charges; federal appeals court to hear Md. gun case; ‘No Labels’ group will be on ballot

At an opening day reception at Government House Wednesday, Gov. Wes Moore and three committee chairs in the House of Delegates were all smiles. From left are Vanessa Atterbeary, D-Howard, chair of Ways & Means; Luke Clippinger, D-Balt. City, chair of Judiciary; C.T. Wilson, D-Charles, chair of Economic Matters; and Moore. Atterbeary gave the nominating speech for House Speaker Adrienne Jones earlier that day, and Wilson helped nominate Speaker Pro-Tem Dana Stein. Governor's Office Photo by Joe Andrucyk

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MD. ELECTIONS BOARD MEMBER RESIGNS AFTER ARREST ON JAN. 6 CHARGES: A top Maryland elections official resigned Thursday after his arrest this week on multiple charges that he participated in the U.S. Capitol attack, during which he allegedly encouraged officers trying to disperse rioters to instead “join us.” Federal investigators allege that Carlos Ayala, 52 – wearing a “Stop the Steal” button on an American flag hoodie – scaled a police barricade on Jan. 6, 2021, while carrying a black flag that read “DEFEND” and depicted an M-16-style rifle. Erin Cox & Tom Jackman/The Washington Post

  • Ayala, who was confirmed to the state board last spring, was arrested Tuesday by the FBI in Maryland and made an initial appearance in the District of Columbia, according to court records. He was released on personal recognizance and must ask for permission to leave the state of Maryland pending trial. He cannot possess firearms while out on bail. Ayala, of Salisbury, is being represented by James Trusty, a former attorney for Donald Trump. Josh Kurtz/Maryland Matters

FULL U.S. APPEALS COURT WILL HEAR MD. HANDGUN CASE: A federal appeals court announced Thursday that it will reconsider a 2016 case challenging Maryland’s handgun qualification law, which the majority of a three-judge panel ruled in November was unconstitutional. The case before the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals will be heard en banc, or in front of the full court and is tentatively scheduled for March. William J. Ford/Maryland Matters

‘NO LABELS’ POLITICAL GROUP WILL BE ON MD. BALLOT: No Labels, a political group that encourages political parties to work together on solutions, has gathered the 10,000 signatures needed to secure a spot on Maryland presidential ballots, state election officials announced Wednesday.  No Labels was formed more than a decade ago and until last month was co-chaired by former Republican Gov. Larry Hogan. The group argues — and independent polling supports — that Americans don’t like the choice between the two front-runners: Democrat Joe Biden and Republican Donald Trump. No Labels says their presidential ticket could provide voters with another choice. John O’Connor/The Baltimore Banner

MoCo SCHOOLS PROBE COMES UP EMPTY: The Montgomery County Office of the Inspector General (OIG) recently completed an investigation of alleged misconduct by senior officials at Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) and found that the allegations were unsubstantiated, Inspector General Megan Davey Limarzi announced Wednesday. Elia Griffin/MoCo360

  • Montgomery County’s inspector general is recommending the local school system update its policies — including requiring district leaders to disclose past relationships with subordinates — after an investigation into alleged misconduct by several senior school officials. The district also should compel employees to cooperate in investigations in which they are the subject of a complaint or a witness, according to a report from the county’s Office of the Inspector General. Nicole Asbury/The Washington Post

BMORE CO. EXEC WANTS TO BYPASS CO. COUNCIL FOR MIXED-USE DEVELOPMENTS: Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski Jr. is expected to introduce legislation next week that would expand the county’s ability to approve multiple-use developments in certain areas without needing approval from the Baltimore County Council, according to a draft bill obtained by The Baltimore Sun. The bill would amend zoning codes to allow mixed-use projects in manufacturing or business districts that are within the Urban-Rural Demarcation Line and located in “node” areas targeted for redevelopment within the 2030 Master Plan, such as aging shopping centers and malls. Lia Russell/The Baltimore Sun

HOWARD CO. MAN GETS 2 YEARS FOR THREATENING LAWMAKERS: A federal judge sentenced a Howard County man to two years in prison Thursday, after he pleaded guilty last year to threatening state lawmakers and a group that advocates for LGBTQI+ people. In case filings, attorneys for Adam Michael Nettina, 34, of West Friendship, had sought his release to an inpatient treatment program and said there was no evidence that he had made any effort to act on the threats. Danielle E. Gaines/Maryland Matters

ANNE ARUNDEL SCHOOLS EMPLOYEE RUNNING FOR DISTRICT 3 SCHOOL BOARD: An Anne Arundel County public school employee from Pasadena filed his candidacy for the District 3 county school board seat in the November election. Chuck Yocum is the senior manager of business and community development for Anne Arundel County Public Schools. He has worked for the school system for nearly 36 years and is set to retire in July. Yocum will be running for the seat that is held by school board Vice President Corine Frank, who has not indicated if she is running for reelection. Brian Jeffries/The Baltimore Sun

HARFORD CO. EXEC SAYS BOOST IN SPENDING ON SCHOOLS, SHERIFF’S OFFICE WON’T BREAK BUDGET: During Harford County Executive Bob Cassilly’s second state of the county meeting, he addressed Harford’s increase investment into the sheriff’s office and school system for the 2025 fiscal year budget. Harford has increased funding for the sheriff’s office and the public school system by 5% each, but the county still plans to stay within the budget. Tony Roberts/The Baltimore Sun

WHAT TO KNOW ABOUT NO LABELS POLITICAL GROUP: No Labels, a political group that encourages political parties to work together on solutions, has gathered the 10,000 signatures needed to secure a spot on Maryland presidential ballots, state election officials announced Wednesday.  No Labels was formed more than a decade ago and until last month was co-chaired by former Republican Gov. Larry Hogan. The group argues — and independent polling supports — that Americans don’t like the choice between the two front-runners: Democrat Joe Biden and Republican Donald Trump. No Labels says their presidential ticket could provide voters with another choice. John O’Connor/The Baltimore Banner

OPPONENTS OF HARBORPLACE REDEVELOPMENT FORM COALITION TO BLOCK PLAN: A coalition opposing a developer’s plans to revitalize Harborplace hopes to block high-rise apartments and offices at the waterfront attraction, possibly by putting a ballot question to city voters this fall. Lorraine Mirabella/The Baltimore Sun

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