Maryland launches bus route to Tradepoint Atlantic

Maryland is touting a new bus route intended to provide residents access to jobs at the massive Tradepoint Atlantic development at Sparrows Point. The Maryland Department of Transportation/ Maryland Transit Administration officially celebrated the launch of the LocalLink 63 bus route on Monday. The route started service earlier this month and makes 47 trips a day from the Inner Harbor through Greektown and Dundalk to Sparrows Point. (Daily Record)

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Michelle Obama portrait by Baltimore artist Amy Sherald makes national splash

Michelle Obama, as envisaged by the Baltimore artist Amy Sherald, has gray skin. That’s one of the characteristics of the portrait unveiled Monday in Washington’s National Portrait Gallery that has everyone talking. Specifically, the former first lady is rendered in Sherald’s trademark “grayscale” — a light charcoal with taupe undertones — that doesn’t so much erase her subject’s race as declare its irrelevance. And both the former president and his wife couldn’t be more thrilled. (Balt. Sun)

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More than 1 million gallons of untreated wastewater flows into Md. creeks

The weekend’s heavy rains caused more than 1.2 million gallons of untreated wastewater to flow into two creeks in Maryland, the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission said Monday. The utility provides drinking water and wastewater treatment for large parts of Montgomery and Prince George’s counties, and the rain caused problems for two of WSSC’s treatment facilities in Prince George’s. (Wash. Post)

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February 12 // Katherine Vettori Lands 'Dream Job' As Towson Women's Soccer Coach

As a longtime neighbor of Towson University, Katherine Vettori often found her mind wandering as she would jog through campus. She noticed all the construction and improvements being made and thought Towson would be a pretty cool place to work. Those daydreams became reality Jan. 3 when Towson athletic director Tim Leonard named Vettori the sixth head coach of the university's women's soccer program. For Vettori, a former conference coach of the year in her previous stint as a collegiate head coach at nearby Loyola University, the opportunity is a dream come true. (Press Box)

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Court decision weakened law meant to keep guns from criminals

The Maryland law that requires a background check when someone wants to sell or give a gun to another person was written to keep weapons out of the hands of criminals. But a Maryland Court of Appeals decision more than a decade ago that loosened the definition of a gun transfer has significantly weakened that law, researchers at Johns Hopkins say, and made it easier for so-called straw purchases to occur. (Balt. Sun)

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$35,000 pay raise proposed for all 313 Maryland judges

A proposal to give all 313 Maryland judges a $35,000 raise over the next four years faces a hearing Tuesday in the House Appropriations Committee. The recommendations of the Judicial Compensation Commission will take effect automatically if the legislature does not reject or amend them by March 15 —  and  lawmakers have not been hesitated to reject or reduce judicial pay hikes in the past. (Md. Reporter)

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Entire Baltimore Metro system to close for a month for emergency repairs

Baltimore’s entire Metro SubwayLink system will remain closed for a month, the Maryland Transit Administration announced Sunday, after safety inspections showed sections of track needed emergency repairs that couldn’t wait until this summer. Gov. Larry Hogan has set aside $2.2 million in emergency funding to run free coach buses for passengers along the subway’s route in addition to the normal MTA bus routes, the MTA said Sunday. (Balt. Sun)

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Anne Arundel's 911 system sees $2.2M overhaul

The county has installed a $2.2 million 911 dispatch system officials say will reduce response times and offer geolocation tracking of emergency service vehicles. In a release, the county said the new computer-aided dispatch system uses “a graphic user interface which enables our users to more efficiently enter and retrieve information.” The county said the system was installed at all county police and fire departments on Jan. 30. County dispatchers previously worked with a system that was more than two decades old, officials said. (Capital)

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