Politics

  • Lawmakers Concerned About Families Teetering On The Edge Of ‘Benefits Cliff’

    Almost 10% of Marylanders live on incomes below the federal poverty level, and a disproportionate number of them are African American, according to a recent report on individuals who rely on public benefits to make ends meet. The United Ways of Maryland published a 182-page report on the impacts of the loss of public benefits for working families when they achieve small increases in their income, or what is known as a “benefits cliff.” Someone could work extra hours and receive more income, but simultaneously lose hundreds of dollars in lost benefits, such as for food stamps and medical assistance. (Md Matters) Read Full Article

  • Question 2 asks Marylanders to legalize sports betting. Where? Which sports? For exactly what purposes? Stay tuned.

    A decade after the first casino opened in the state, Maryland voters will decide whether to expand legalized gambling by permitting the sort of betting — on the Ravens, Orioles or other sports teams — that casinos and racetracks have long sought. If Ballot Question 2 is approved in the Nov. 3 election, Maryland would join neighboring jurisdictions Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Delaware and the District of Columbia in allowing sports wagering that has proliferated as the nation’s attitudes toward gambling have relaxed. (Balt Sun) Read Full Article

  • Census plans to stop counting Maryland residents next week amid legal fight

    As a national legal fight over the 2020 census continues, the deadline for the once-in-a-decade count changed again this week — another abrupt twist for local officials trying to make sure Marylanders are counted. U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross announced Monday that the census will end Oct. 5. The announcement came days after a federal judge in California blocked the Trump administration from ending the count Sept. 30. Civil rights groups have been pushing for a longer timeline, saying the nation is at risk of inaccurate data and a massive undercount of communities of color. (Wash Post) Read Full Article

  • MTA backs off plan for major bus cuts in Baltimore

    The Maryland Transit Administration is backing off its plan to implement major cuts to bus service following an outcry from residents and public transportation advocates. Instead of truncating and eliminating core bus routes within the BaltimoreLink system, the MTA announced Wednesday it will temporarily reduce the frequency of commuter bus routes and MARC train service. (Balt Bus Journal) Read Full Article

Center Maryland

  • Neuroscience Has A Whiteness Problem. This Research Project Aims To Fix It

    Mental illness can run in families. And Dr. Kafui Dzirasa grew up in one of these families. His close relatives include people with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and depression. As a medical student, he learned about the ones who'd been committed to psychiatric hospitals or who "went missing" and were discovered in alleyways. Dzirasa decided to dedicate his career to "figuring out how to make science relevant to ultimately help my own family." (NPR)Read Full Article

  • Irvin: Covering New Modalities is the Only Cure for the Opiod Crisis

    During these difficult times with the coronavirus pandemic and ongoing opioid crisis, we must proactively address pain management and emotional health. I have had a front-row seat to the healthcare system for over seven years, enduring 60 plus surgeries, pain management protocols and procedures due to the ongoing effects on my body from a flesh-eating bacteria of my abdominal wall. To be honest, it has been a struggle with managing my pain and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).  But I am thankful to be alive today to offer some proven solutions which I hope can help shed light on safer alternatives.Read Full Article

  • Venetoulis: Bring in the Thugs

    Here’s why it’s a mistake to ignore Trump’s stunning refusal to accept the election results.  He has a psychotic objection to losing but it’s increasingly evident he can’t win.  His only strategy is to weaponize his cult.  He has access to at least fifteen law enforcement posses buried in various agencies under HIS command, not local law enforcement authorities—a militia with no chain of command or training in civilian crowd control—bursting with a thuggish relish to carry weapons, bully others and wear uniforms of authority. Read Full Article

  • The Light House Increases Meals, Provides Housing Solutions with Support from Bank of America

    As COVID-19 continues to challenge jobs throughout Maryland, The Light House is experiencing the ripple effect of unemployment in Anne Arundel County. Along with a significant increase in meals being distributed, the local nonprofit has shifted gears in preparation for an increase in homelessness throughout the county. The Light House recently received a grant from Bank of America, which has helped the nonprofit to prepare for the anticipated need. “We’re concerned with the rate of unemployment, that after some of the moratoriums on evictions have been lifted, there will be an imminent risk of homelessness county-wide. We’re preparing to be a lifeline to those desperately trying to avoid homelessness,” said Jo Ann Mattson, Executive Director of The Light House.Read Full Article

Business

  • Baltimore Mayor Extends Moratorium On Event Permits Through October Due To COVID-19 Pandemic

    Baltimore mayor Jack Young and other officials addressed city residents at 10 a.m. on the latest related to the coronavirus pandemic. Young announced he will be extending the moratorium on event permits through October. That means the city will not approve permits for certain larger sized events through the fall and will revaluate in the future. (WJZ) Read Full Article

  • $2 million more in small business aid coming from Baltimore Development Corp.

    The city is opening up a new round of financial relief for small businesses, with $2 million more in grants being administered by its development arm. Mayor Bernard C. “Jack” Young and officials from the Baltimore Development Corp. announced the new grant funding round during a press conference Wednesday morning. Qualifying small businesses will be able to apply for up to $15,000 in grants to cover expenses like rent, payroll and personal protective equipment beginning next Monday, Oct. 5. (Balt Bus Journal)Read Full Article

  • Owners of The Local Fry to open Toki Tako, a Korean barbecue concept

    Before Covid-19, the owners of The Local Fry in Hampden, Liz and Kevin Irish, would wrap up their work week with a meal of Korean barbecue. "It was our way to wind down, eat something comforting and delicious," Liz said. The pandemic has put that tradition on hold. But in the coming months, they have plans to bring the flavors of Korean barbecue to Hampden's Rotunda development. The Irishes are working to open Toki Tako, featuring grilled meats like galbi and spicy pork belly, possibly before the end of the year. (Balt Bus Journal) Read Full Article

  • Baltimore Homecoming won't bring ex-pats to the city in 2020, launches $1M fundraising campaign instead

    Baltimore Homecoming won't bring dozens of ex-pats to Charm City this year amid the continuing novel coronavirus outbreak. But the three-year-old organization is launching a new fundraising effort to keep the homecoming spirit alive until 2021. Homecoming organizers on Wednesday announced the "Campaign for Baltimore's Heroes," a push to raise $1 million for local institutions. The fundraiser will run through March 30, 2021. (Balt Bus Journal) Read Full Article

Education

  • ‘This is a crisis’: Baltimore-area school districts expect enrollment to decline this fall — and funding to follow

    Thousands of students are missing from Baltimore-area classes this September, some because they don’t have internet access and others who may have dropped out of the public schools during the pandemic. The exact enrollment numbers won’t be known for several weeks, but on Wednesday every school system in the state will tally its students as part of an annual count required by state law. The decline is expected to be significant in some school systems — and unless state officials step in, the consequences for public school funding for next year could be devastating. (Balt Sun) Read Full Article

  • Parents, teachers and union leaders rally outside Baltimore City Public Schools office to fight potential reopening

    More than 50 parents, teachers and union leaders gathered outside Baltimore City Public Schools headquarters on East North Avenue early Wednesday night to urge the district to not reopen schools for in-person learning. Speakers voiced concerns about the safety of both teachers and students if the district decides to move to in-person learning and said repeatedly that employees and children are “under attack." They also touted an online petition that has received more than 2,200 signatures that outlines what needs to be done for a safe return to school. The demonstration was organized by the Baltimore Teachers Union and the Parent and Community Advisory Board. (Balt Sun) Read Full Article

  • Carroll County school board opts to wait a week before deciding high school sports start date

    The weight of whether to allow high school sports to be played this fall was evident during Wednesday night’s Carroll County’s Board of Education updates meeting, so much so that board members decided to wait another week to decide. After hearing the pros and cons of getting athletics back onto the high school calendar, a discussion led by Carroll supervisor of athletics Michael Duffy, Westminster athletic director Terry Molloy, and Century principal Brian Booz, the board agreed to hold another meeting Oct. 7 to discuss the matter further. (Carr Co Times) Read Full Article

  • 'It hurt in our heart’: Morgan State students hold vigil honoring life of Breonna Taylor, call for end to racial injustice

    Following a string of passionate nationwide civil rights protests and demonstrations throughout the country and in Baltimore City, Morgan State University students gathered Wednesday for a somber moment to honor the life of Breonna Taylor, a Black woman who was killed in March by Louisville, Kentucky, police officers during a raid of her apartment. Nearly 40 people assembled at the Murphy Fine Arts Center Outdoor Amphitheatre, with many of them expressing an increased need to address race in America. Candles were passed out to each student who attended. (Balt Sun) Read Full Article

Around Maryland

  • Maryland reports fewer monthly coronavirus tests while infections among teen range jump

    Maryland ended September with fewer new cases of the coronavirus and deaths from its effects than it reported in August, but the state also performed fewer tests. Of those new infections, those aged 10-19 accounted for a larger proportion of the caseload than they had in any of the pandemic’s five full months prior. On the final day of September, Maryland officials reported 414 new cases and three new fatalities associated with COVID-19, for a total of 16,476 infections and 193 deaths for the month. May remains the state’s worst month in both measures, with more than 31,000 confirmed infections and at least 1,364 fatalities. (Balt Sun) Read Full Article

  • MEMA Secures $2.5M To Reduce Risks Of Hazards, Disasters In Maryland

    The Maryland Emergency Management Agency announced it will receive $2,612,302 in federal Flood Mitigation Assistance and Pre-Disaster Mitigation grants. MEMA will distribute these funds to local jurisdictions throughout the state that are at risk or have been affected by natural disasters. (WJZ) Read Full Article

  • Although Up To 250 People Allowed At Pimlico For Preakness Saturday, It Won’t Be Fans

    When the Preakness happens Saturday at Pimlico, 250 people will be allowed at the facility, but racing officials say it won’t be spectators, despite what Baltimore City’s mayor said Wednesday. During a press conference, Mayor Jack Young said up to 250 spectators would be allowed to watch the Preakness live at Pimlico. Young said Gov. Larry Hogan amended his executive order to allow minimal spectators at the horse race this Saturday. (WJZ) Read Full Article

  • Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel construction is 2 years behind schedule

    Construction of an additional tube for the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel is now two years behind schedule. The wrap-up date is now expected to be 2024. The Virginian-Pilot reported Tuesday that the delay is due in part to the granite boulders that were used to build the bridge-tunnel 60 years ago. The project’s main contractors are using tunnel boring machines. But it's taking longer than expected because of the boulders. (Delmarva) Read Full Article

Commentary

  • Franchot: Second stimulus package is vital for Maryland’s economy

    Despite better than expected revenue projections for Maryland’s budget, Comptroller Peter Franchot said he is still very concerned about the state’s economic future and that federal assistance is needed. “Right now it doesn’t mean anything. As far as policy all it means is if there’s a second federal stimulus we could be in a better position than we thought we were going to be in. If there isn’t a second federal stimulus we’re in a deep hole,” Franchot told MarylandReporter.com in a phone interview on Wednesday. (Md Reporter) Read Full Article

  • The final phase of reopening the courts

    As ordered by Chief Judge Mary Ellen Barbera, the fifth and final phase of reopening the courts to the public will occur on Oct. 5, 2020. Yes, in less than one week, all Maryland courts will be open to the public and jury trials will begin in earnest. Or will they? Jury members are supposed to represent a broad cross-section of the communities in which they sit.  We wonder how this is even possible if elderly citizens, citizens with compromised immune systems, and citizens assisting their children in virtual classrooms are either excused by the Jury Commissioner or simply refuse to show up during this pandemic. (Daily Record) Read Full Article

  • The horrific debate shows exactly why Trump shouldn’t get a second term

    Tuesday’s presidential debate was a horrific event, with only one conclusion: President Trump has no business inhabiting the White House now, and most certainly should not receive a second term. The president’s behavior onstage was rude, bullying and rampantly inappropriate. To say it was like a 2-year-old throwing a temper tantrum is to insult the toddler. No one should want this man in control of a television remote, never mind the nuclear button. The president lied — a lot. He asserted widespread voter fraud, falsely saying ballots were getting dumped in rivers. He promised drug prices “will be coming down 80 or 90 percent,” when they went up 3 percent last year. He claimed to have an Obamacare replacement, then couldn’t coherently explain anything resembling one. (Wash Post) Read Full Article...

  • Donohue: What does it mean to be conservative in today’s America?

    There was a time when I considered myself to be a political conservative. I supported Dwight Eisenhower’s domestic and foreign policy. I supported his tough stance against Russia and the Soviet Union. I supported his sending of federal troops to Little Rock Arkansas to protect the racial minority’s right to attend desegregated public schools, enforcing the Supreme Court Ruling in Brown vs. Board of Education. I supported the massive public investments in the interstate highway system and the construction of grand international airports. (Cap Gazette)Read Full Article