State Roundup, February 17, 2020

Maryland House OKs $2.2 billion school repair, construction bill to ease crowding, replace old buildings; four committees to hear Kirwan education recommendations today; bill would enable people targeted by false police calls to sue the callers for damages; opioid chief Schuh defends expenditures after critical audit; half of Gov. Hogan’s “Green Bag” appointments go to women; new Redskins stadium may just replace the old one; state, local solution sought to hemp farm stench; and attorneys for Catherine Pugh cite distress, economic loss in seeking 366-day sentence for Baltimore’s former mayor.

Sen. Carter says progressive grassroots support could help her win Cummings’ seat, despite Mfume’s win

Sen. Jill Carter attributed Kweisi Mfume’s sweeping win in last week’s primary to favor among the Democratic Party establishment. “He won decisively in a primary that was very much geared toward the person with the highest name recognition and attracted the oldest adults in the voting bloc….But I believe that the message that we are bringing and the ‘fight for the people’ that our campaign believes is important and is necessary in the Congress — or else I wouldn’t run.”

Crime Scene

Gansler critiques key component of Hogan’s crime-reduction plan

Former Maryland Attorney General Doug Gansler said Gov. Larry Hogan’s proposal to allocate more resources to fight violent crime in Baltimore City is well-intentioned but is only a temporary solution to the problem. Gansler, a Democrat who served from 2007-2015, said: “The long-term solution is to make sure that we have proper leadership going forward, innovative thinking, innovative ideas — to bring down dramatically the crime rate.

State Roundup, February 7, 2020

Bill to ban flavored vaping and tobacco products gains powerful support but still has fierce opposition; 7th District’s April race shaping up as field narrows; massive education reform bill proposed; judges oppose Hogan’s sentencing transparency criminal reform idea; foster parents could be given more rights at court cases; residency requirement for police brass passed; Washington County lawmakers ask for redevelopment incentives; House Speaker pushes HCBU settlement; toll late fee reduction goes to hearing; Mount Airy proposed for state urban renewal

State Roundup, February 5, 2020

Kweisi Mfume wins Democratic primary while Kimberly Klacik takes Republican race for chance to finish the late U.S. Rep. Elijah Cummings’ term in Congress; who are the candidates?; it may be confusing but there is still another primary in April, for a full term in Congress; Mfume overwhelmed a large Democratic field; in the meantime, House and Senate Democratic leaders in Annapolis announced a broad legislative package aimed at reducing violent crime; even as Gov. Hogan lambasts mandated spending, he does add to it; lawmakers question redundancy of Hogan’s school accountability plan; House passes bill requiring background checks for private sales of long guns; as Redskins sports betting at new stadium, they vow to hire minority vendor; and President Trump honors Maryland Tuskegee Airman with promotion to brigadier general.

State Roundup, February 4, 2020

Voters in the 7th Congressional District head to the polls today to nominate a candidate to replace the late Elijah Cummings; in expected low turnout, ‘super voters’ are targeted; panel postpones appointments to UMMS board of directors until audit is complete; Gov. Hogan speaks with city leaders on crime, violence and squeegee kids; Hogan pushes back against bill to use education funds for Pimlico revitalization; Senate panel OKs two Hogan picks to lead Transportation, Corrections; Montgomery House delegation cuts proposed salary hike for local school board members by $50,000; prez candidate Michael Bloomberg taps Maryland campaign team; and mayor of Thurmont, widow of slain Capital Gazette reporter to attend President Trump’s State of the Union address.

State Roundup, February 3, 2020

Baltimore city officials push lawmakers for more aid, cooperation in reducing violent crime; aid in dying advocates continue to push bill; while Baltimore County lawmakers praise the Pimlico-Laurel racetrack plan, they ponder future of State Fairgrounds in Timonium; bills would strengthen state’s public records laws; lawmakers seeks to reduce late fees for toll payments; Tuesday is Special Primary Day for the 7th District Congressional race to fill the late U.S. Rep. Cummings’ term, and the Baltimore Sun editorial board backs state Sen. Jill Carter in the Democratic Primary and community activist Reba Hawkins in the Republican Primary; back in Annapolis: Republican lawmakers put forward bill on what can be labeled ‘meat;’ Baltimore County government hasn’t recycled glass in years; and Howard County has significant health disparities that exist along racial lines.

State Roundup, January 31, 2020

State lawmakers override vetoes including ‘ban the box,’ Dream Act expansion; the end is near in the 7th District Democratic primary race; debate continues on gun control measure; Delaney drops out of presidential race; bill to allow armed Baltimore County school police officers; General Assembly vacancies filled; Baltimore Clean Air act delayed; grants could help Frederick renters; UMMS trying to recover Healthy Holly money; 12th early voting site for Montgomery; Carroll poll workers want security; editorial on judicial elections; Brown wants border wall security questions answered; assault law proposed for strangulation; cannabis oversight and rights; young Sierra club leader picked

State Roundup, January 30, 2020

Republican lawmakers attempt to amend bill on sales of long guns, while Democrats call them a ‘distraction’; Senate President Ferguson and Sen. Miller push for online ad tax to help fund education, others question its fairness, constitutionality; Gov. Hogan revives push for statewide post-Labor Day school start; proposal would protect Maryland drivers who have their licenses confiscated due to Real ID non-compliance; Speaker Jones turns on House live-streaming; legislation would extend protection to private citizens breaking into cars to save heat-distressed animals; and sisters of late U.S. Rep. Cummings endorses Mfume, Spikes.