Politics

  • U.S. Capitol Police investigate after report Rep. Andy Harris brought gun to House chamber checkpoint

    U.S. Rep. Andy Harris of Maryland is the latest Republican lawmaker to run afoul of new security screening designed to keep guns out of the House chamber following an attack two weeks ago on the Capitol, according to a Capitol official and an eyewitness account. A security official “saw a firearm on the person of Rep. Harris and relayed that to his superiors” as Harris sought to enter the chamber Thursday, said the Capitol official with knowledge of the events. “To be clear, Rep. Harris did not enter the Floor,” said the official. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the matter. (Balt Sun) Read Full Article

  • After U.S. Capitol riot, 2,300+ Maryland Republicans flee party

    More than 2,300 registered Republicans in Maryland changed their political affiliation in the week after a group of rioters violently stormed the U.S. Capitol in support of Republican President Donald Trump. That figure, released by the Maryland State Board of Elections, eclipses the decrease any other political party saw in that same week. The Democratic Party lost 862 registrants during that span, while 556 unaffiliated voters opted for a new party registration. (Balt Sun)Read Full Article

  • Baltimore State’s Attorney Mosby wants inspector general to wrap up investigation into her travel and businesses

    Six months after asking the inspector general to investigate her travel and personal businesses, Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby wants the probe wrapped up, arguing that a lack of resolution undermines public trust in her office. In a letter Thursday to Inspector General Isabel Mercedes Cumming, an attorney for Mosby noted the prosecutor’s office has turned over travel receipts, expense reports, calendars and more than 4,000 emails. (Balt Sun) Read Full Article

  • Anne Arundel County Executive Steuart Pittman lobbies for progressive tax legislation

    Anne Arundel County Executive Steuart Pittman is once again asking state legislators to pass a bill enabling local governments to implement progressive taxing structures — reducing the income tax burden on residents who earn less than $500,000 and increasing it for those who make more. It’s the second go-around for the legislation, which passed in the House last year but didn’t make it through the Senate during the coronavirus-shortened session. (Cap Gazette) Read Full Article

Center Maryland

  • DON’T LET COVID-19 GET IN THE WAY - OPEN ENROLLMENT ENDS DECEMBER 15, 2020

    MedChi, The Maryland State Medical Society, is reminding Marylanders that open enrollment to buy, change, or renew a qualified health plan for 2021 will end December 15 for healthcare starting on January 1, 2021. Remember that Medicaid enrollment is year-round, and Medicaid-eligible Marylanders may start their coverage immediately. Marylanders who are enrolled in Medicaid must renew their Medicaid coverage once a year through the Maryland Health Connection. For those who want to enroll in a Medicare plan or change their Medicare coverage, Medicare Open Enrollment will continue through December 15. For additional Medicare plan information, individuals may call 1-800-MEDICARE or visit www.medicare.gov. Individuals do not need to renew their coverage if they are satisfied with their current plans, and those plans are still offered through Medicare.Read Full...

  • Holmes: Hunger has skyrocketed as a result of the coronavirus, but these nutrition programs can feed kids and promote equity

    Childhood hunger was a problem in Maryland long before the coronavirus pandemic hit, and it’s no secret that the ongoing economic crisis has made the situation much more dire for many families. Parents and caregivers have lost jobs and wages and are finding themselves struggling even more to pay bills and put food on the table. In August, No Kid Hungry Maryland released a new report based on data from the most recent Maryland Youth Risk Behavior Survey/Youth Tobacco Survey that showed 1 in every 4 middle and high school students in Maryland lacked consistent access to healthy food. Worse yet, these troubling rates of food insecurity were from before COVID-19. More recent data shows that food insecurity tripled in households with children in the first three months of the pandemic alone.Read Full Article

  • 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

Business

  • Over 41K Marylanders Filed For Unemployment In Last Week

    Over 41,000 Marylanders filed for unemployment in the last week, according to the Maryland Department of Labor Division and Unemployment Insurance. It’s the highest amount of state residents filing since the New Year. The U.S. Labor Department reported Thursday that 900,000 Americans filed for unemployment benefits for the first time. That was reported on a seasonally adjusted basis. The number is slightly down slightly, though experts said it shows no real improvement. (WJZ/AP) Read Full Article

  • Maryland Public Service Commission does not monitor whether utilities adhere to merger orders, audit finds

    The commission that oversees Maryland utilities failed to check whether companies going through mergers followed orders approving those transactions, a legislative audit found. The Public Service Commission, which regulates the state’s gas, electric, water and telephone utilities, has no way to ensure that utility companies comply with merger approval orders, which could call for credits to customers, donations to charities or other conditions, the General Assembly’s Office of Legislative Audits said in a Jan. 15 report made public Thursday. (Balt Sun)Read Full Article

  • Giant Food expands Prince George's County headquarters, adds 70 jobs

    Giant Food, Greater Baltimore’s dominant supermarket chain, has expanded its Landover headquarters by 31,000 square feet and added 70 new jobs there, the state of Maryland and the grocer jointly announced Thursday. The state courted the expansion with $500,000 in conditional loans — $250,000 from the Maryland Department of Commerce through its Advantage Maryland program and $250,000 from the Prince George’s County Economic Development Incentive Fund. Giant will also be eligible for Maryland’s Job Creation Tax Credit. (Balt Bus Journal)Read Full Article

  • Rosedale company brings high-tech cleaning robot to Maryland

    The nearly-5-foot robots look almost like something out of a science fiction film as they emanate bright beams of blue light and meander through hospital rooms, kitchens and offices. But their job isn’t to shoot deadly lasers or fight aliens — instead, the robots’ simple mission is to clean. (Daily Record)Read Full Article

Education

  • Hogan: State will explore 'every legal avenue' if schools don't try to reopen

    There is no public health reason for school boards to keep students out of school, Gov. Larry Hogan said Thursday. Maryland is "urgently calling" on all county school systems to immediately try to return to in-person instruction no later than March 1, he said. Hogan said he wanted “to make it clear” to unions that he expect teachers to make every effort to return to the classroom. (Times-News) Read Full Article

  • Harford superintendent hopes to have plan to return students to class by Monday school board meeting

    Harford County schools’ superintendent said staff will work through the weekend to adjust its return plan to start bring students back for in-person instruction after the governor and state superintendent called on all Maryland school systems to have kids in classrooms by March. “My hope is to have some sort of draft document up by the time of the [Harford County Board of Education] meeting Monday or at least immediately after the meeting,” Superintendent Sean Bulson said in an interview Thursday. (Balt Sun) Read Full Article

  • Anne Arundel board votes to start high school no earlier than 8:30 a.m.

    Later school start times in Anne Arundel County gained a long-sought victory Wednesday night when the school board called for a plan to push the starting bell for high schools back to at least 8:30 a.m. The Board of Education voted 7-1 to have Superintendent George Arlotto develop a plan to move school start times for middle and high schoolers by April that better aligns with studies showing student health improves with later start times. (Cap Gazette) Read Full Article

  • Bill would allow Md. high schools to teach students about risks of gambling

    Maryland high schools may soon be required to adopt a curriculum on gambling addiction, depending on the fate of one bill in the state legislature. SB0243, sponsored by Sen. Bryan Simonaire, R-Anne Arundel, directs the Maryland State Department of Education to develop a program for local schools to teach high school students the dangers of gambling. (Daily Record)Read Full Article

Around Maryland

  • Over 2.1K New Cases As Hospitalizations Down, ICU Beds Up

    Hospitalizations drop, though still remain above 1,800 as the state adds 2,166 coronavirus cases Thursday morning. There are 46 less people hospitalized, down to 1,812 people. Of those, 424 are in ICU beds and 1,388 are in acute care. Forty-six Marylanders died from the virus in the last 24 hours, bringing the state total to 6,560. There have now been 334,519 coronavirus cases in Maryland since the state began tracking the pandemic. (WJZ) Read Full Article

  • One year in, Howard County Truth & Reconciliation group illuminates history of lynchings

    There’s a cart at the Maryland State Archives waiting for Howard County resident Marlena Jareaux. It is piled high with seven containers worth of Reconstruction-era archival documents. All that separates Jareaux, 53, from that metal cart is the coronavirus pandemic (Balt Sun) Read Full Article

  • Carroll County Commissioner Eric Bouchat’s motions seeking to eliminate school board, planning commission roles fail

    Commissioner Eric Bouchat attempted to change some of the inner workings of Carroll County government late in Thursday morning’s Board of Commissioners open session. His motions for proposed state legislation to eliminate the county’s ex-officio position from the Board of Education and Planning & Zoning Commission failed, but Bouchat stirred some conversation among the board. (Carr Co Times) Read Full Article

  • Winning Powerball jackpot ticket worth $731.1 million sold in small Maryland town

    In a Western Maryland town of just over 1,000 people, the Coney Market shop, otherwise known for hamburgers and hand-dipped ice cream, sold around 1,200 Powerball tickets last week, according to owner Richard “Dick” Ravenscroft. Still, the chances were slim that he would sell the winning ticket for the largest jackpot in Maryland history. Individual odds of winning the jackpot are about 1 in 292 million, according to the Maryland Lottery. (Balt Sun)Read Full Article

Commentary

  • Baltimore city-county cooperation may be controversial, but it’s still good policy (and has been for decades)

    When I was elected Baltimore County executive, my first call was from William Donald Schaefer. I had run his campaign for Baltimore City mayor in 1971, and we remained close friends. We had lunch at Sabatino’s in Little Italy. Schaefer had been mayor for three years; I had been county executive for a little over three weeks. “The city can’t make it alone,” he said. “You guys have the money, we have the problems. We’ve got to work together.” (Balt Sun)Read Full Article

  • Maryland’s House speaker crafts ambitious ‘Black Agenda’ to close equity gaps

    After watching images of George Floyd take his last breaths as a Minneapolis police officer knelt on his neck last spring, it seemed just about everyone jumped on the social justice bandwagon. Multiracial groups took to the streets in major cities in protest. Corporations, restaurants, suburban moms and government entities declared their allegiance to the Black Lives Matter movement. (Balt Sun) Read Full Article

  • Maryland senator: ‘It’s a moment of accountability’ for lawmakers who spread Trump’s election lie

    Our new president, a Democrat, has called for unity and healing. But the former president, a Republican, has been impeached for inciting an insurrection that resulted in a mob attack on the Capitol; his trial in the Senate promises to be divisive and probably rancorous. Meanwhile, there are 147 Republicans in Congress who voted to overturn the new president’s election. Some of their Democratic colleagues have called on them to resign for voting as they did, thereby contributing to the insurrection. (Balt Sun) Read Full Article

  • Dante Barksdale’s murder: a terrible blow to Baltimore

    I met Dante Barksdale in an Uber in September 2016. He was the driver, I was the passenger, and by the end of the ride we had decided to write his life story together. I was drawn to his warmth, his natural storytelling ability (it was evident in the narration of our drive through Fells Point: “When I was coming up, you could go all the way down Caroline Street to the waterfront. No Whole Foods, no Michael Phelps condos…”) and his surname — familiar to any viewer of “The Wire.” He told me later he trusted me because I wore a Poly ring. (Balt Sun)Read Full Article