State Roundup, January 9, 2020

Board of Public Works approves 2-1 Gov. Hogan’s Capital Beltway, I-270 roads plan with compromises; opening day of 441st General Assembly session launches era of younger, more diverse leadership, talk of bipartisan cooperation; as Adrienne Jones becomes new speaker, late Speaker Michael Busch is remembered; Gov. Hogan dismisses as false Washington Monthly article on business dealings, ethics while Jones, Senate President Ferguson express concern; cash-strapped Prince George’s, Baltimore to seek changes in Kirwan education formula; statewide, police departments have destroyed 270 rape kits in past two years; Maryland Insurance Agency to remain in downtown Baltimore location; gun issues among variety of Frederick lawmakers’ concerns; and Hogan asks Attorney General Frosh to sue Pennsylvania, EPA over Bay watershed cleanup plan.

State Roundup, January 6, 2020

Gov. Hogan, Comptroller Franchot reach agreement over Beltway, I-270 roads projects, now expected to go before Board of Public Works on Wednesday; as the General Assembly session gets ready to open, education reform – without massive tax hike – leads concerns; bills Hogan vetoed last May expected to reappear; with changes aplenty, House Speaker Jones taps new committee leadership; Prince George’s lawmakers want deal for Bowie Race Track in any Pimlico legislation; Carroll County lawmakers set sights on Kirwan ed reform; AFSCME says Hogan denied its members raises; Frederick County skewing slightly blue; banning hair discrimination expected in Baltimore city, may come up in Annapolis; and towns to fight proposed maglev project.

Sun readers call new gun control law ‘unconstitutional’ Really? Hardly

An overwhelming majority of people responding to a Baltimore Sun poll this week — a whopping 94% — called “Maryland’s ban on assault weapons and large capacity magazines” “unconstitutional.” What’s more, 18,109 people responded to the “poll” published Tuesday, meaning about 17,000 responders objected to the new ban. This was not a real public opinion survey seeking a random sample of the population that would show what a representative group of Maryland citizens think of the new law. It was one of those pop quizzes made possible by the wonderfully interactive nature of the Internet.