State Roundup, April 26, 2019

In light of FBI, IRS raids, Gov. Hogan calls on Baltimore City Mayor Pugh to resign, while Reps. Cummings and Ruppersberger stop short of using the word; seven sites were raided on Thursday, including two Pugh homes, homes of aides and offices; UMMS was also subpoenaed; and some say Baltimore City now at a standstill; but in Annapolis, Alderwoman Shaneka Henson chosen to take over Del. Busch’s seat; Legislative Black Caucus fires back at Dem Party chair’s call for Democrat unity over House Speaker replacement, as it seeks to get ‘historic results’ as Comptroller Franchot calls chair’s suggestion ‘a preposterous strategy;’ Baltimore County exec wants legislators’ meeting over speakership to take up school funding as well; Baltimore City board pulls Associated Black Charities contracts; VP Pence to speak at MD GOP dinner; and longtime Baltimore County secretary Tom Toporovich dies at 89.

State Roundup, April 25, 2019

Dem Party chair warns Democratic House delegates against allowing Republican to have sway over next speaker pick; 12 seek House District 30A seat held by Michael Busch; Board of Public Works questions UM schools’ food service contracts that contain gifts, other provisions; Del. Saab says he inadvertently tweeted two ads; Gov. Hogan commutes Baltimore man’s life sentence; University of Maryland sets up 20-person panel to search for replacement for retiring President Wallace Loh; city inspectors confirm problems with Pimlico Grandstand seating; acting Mayor Young switches out letterhead, fires three Pugh aides on leave; and new documentary takes fresh look at history of Columbia.

State Roundup, April 24, 2019

In New Hampshire speech, Gov. Larry Hogan criticizes President Trump, saying he attempted “to obstruct justice,” slams RNC for loyalty to Trump, but says he is still testing the waters in primary challenge to him; however, Hogan is mastering the details of a presidential candidate; Republican members of the House of Delegates seek leverage as Dems weigh next Speaker; meanwhile, progressive groups urge Dems to stick to Dem caucus pick; Baltimore acting Mayor Young says he would “hate to see” Mayor Pugh return from leave; charity that helped Pugh secure $80,000 in Healthy Holly book sales set to receive $14 million in city contracts; Frederick County seeks ways to preserve farms and farmland; and Baltimore Sun reporters seeking pay raises.

State Roundup, April 23, 2019

University System of Maryland regents OK tuition hikes; as legislature prepares to return to Annapolis to pick the next speaker, House Republicans seek a bigger role in choosing speaker and progressive groups push for more term limits, transparency in the House of Delegates; former Frostburg student sues school, state over measles vaccine requirement; Gov. Hogan’s in New Hampshire for must-attend event for presidential hopefuls; John Delaney lags behind in donors; President Trump sues U.S. Rep. Elijah Cummings over subpoena for financial documents; study finds Baltimore County police destroyed twice as many rape kits than first reported; boutique co-owned by Baltimore Mayor Pugh shuttered in December; and Sheila Sachs, noted attorney and wife of former Md. attorney general, dies at 78.

State Roundup, April 22, 2019

Maryland’s unemployment rate ticked up slightly to 3.8% in March; bill would provide protections to student loan borrowers who have complained of predatory behavior from loan servicers; smoking, vaping age to rise to 21 in October; Johns Hopkins University to prep for yearslong rollout of private police force; Carroll delegation celebrate bringing home capital funding for local projects; Gov. Hogan attends event in New Hampshire; UMMS directors helped fund then Sen. Pugh’s run for Baltimore mayor; city councilman proposes ethics bills; review of University of Maryland Regents finds lack of leadership, transparency; and Howard County population grows almost 13% in eight years.

State Roundup, April 19, 2019

Gov. Hogan signs 195 bills into law, including UMMS board overhaul, tougher penalties for cyberbullying and reclassifying human trafficking as a violent crime; June 28 officially becomes Freedom of the Press Day in Maryland; 17 progressive groups seek answers from candidates for House Speaker on transparency, openness of legislative process, term limits; Hogan calls lawmakers back to Annapolis on May 1 to elect new Speaker; state tool shows impact to homeowners of proposed widening of Capital Beltway, I-270; Maryland lawmakers oppose proposed off-shore seismic testing; Maryland U.S. reps weigh in on Mueller report; Westminster considers banning single use plastic bags; and Kensington mulls lowering voting age for local elections.

State Roundup, April 18, 2019

As Maryland awaits Gov. Hogan’s signature on the nation’s first styrofoam food container ban, which carries a $250 fine, restaurants worry about the cost of finding replacements; Gov. Hogan set to sign measures to give authorities more leeway in prosecuting hate crimes and online bullying; the race for House speaker is heating up with Del. McIntosh warning rivals Adrienne Jones and Dereck Davis not to pursue Republican votes; bill awaiting governor’s signature to spare BSO continued labor dispute with $3.2 million grant; Purple Line companies replace CEO; MdTA chief abruptly resigns; budget Secretary Brinkley’s son memorialized; more aides to Mayor Pugh put on paid leave as probes into ‘Healthy Holly’ scandal continue; and Rep. David Trone’s campaign coffers look anemic.

State Roundup, April 17, 2019

As Speaker Michael Busch is laid to rest, friends and colleagues fondly recall his care for ‘ordinary citizen,’ importance of family, bi-partisanship; following Busch’s funeral, Dels. Davis, McIntosh confirm too are seeking to become next House Speaker, joining Del. Jones in race for the post; Feds make arrests in Jessup prison smuggling; suburban Maryland water utility asks state to halt construction of Purple Line, saying it is too close to a major Prince George’s water line; overlooked amid the Pimlico hubbub: the General Assembly passed a bill to fund planning for expansion of the city’s convention center and construction of a new convention hotel; U.S. Rep. Ruppersberger seeks funds for digital map of all 95,000 miles of the U.S. Coastline to prepare people against floods; and U.S. Rep. Trone on listening tour of western Maryland.

State Roundup, April 16, 2019

Hundreds of mourners, including elected officials, gather at State House to bid farewell to House Speaker Michael Busch as he lies in state; some Marylanders seeing lower federal refunds; lawmakers who are or have been in the education field bring depth, breadth of views to education policy; acting Mayor Young, others see politics at play in Stronach Group’s decision to pull almost 7,000 Pimlico seats off-line in time for Preakness; Pulitzer board honors Capital Gazette with special citation, $100,000 award ‘serving their community at a time of unspeakable grief;’ federal Metro funding legislation cuts bans purchase of railway cars from China; and Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski proposes county’s first income tax increase in 30 years.

State Roundup, April 15, 2019

Prince George’s Exec Alsobrooks backs Del. Davis for Speaker of House and Del. Adrienne Jones is seeking the post, Del. Maggie McIntosh may already have a lock on the seat, although Republicans are pushing for a say; Sen. Zirkin is targeted for criticism over failure to pass bill requiring background checks on long-gun purchases; bill targets child erotica; Greater Baltimore Committee calls on Baltimore Mayor Pugh to resign, a sentiment echoed by editorial writers; late Speaker Michael Busch to lie in state today and tomorrow, as tributes continue to pour in; 6,670 seats at Pimlico to be eliminated from Preakness sales because of safety concerns; and Maryland’s U.S. senators draft transportation bill to grant Washington Transit Authority $150 million a year for 10 years.