Baltimore mayor tweets she is 'well aware' of Baltimore police corruption trial, expands on prior statement

Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh released a statement after midnight Thursday to clarify that she is “well aware” of the corruption trial involving her city’s police department, expanding upon comments she made during a news briefing Wednesday morning. “Be assured, we are addressing the culture and practices of the Baltimore Police Department in a way that will engender the highest level of trust and confidence our citizens want and need in those who are sworn to protect and defend,” Pugh tweeted from her account at 12:26 a.m. (Balt. Sun)

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Gov. Hogan’s office says his transportation chief ‘misspoke’ in promising Amazon a ‘blank check’

The office of Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R) on Wednesday backed away from comments made by his transportation chief that the state has promised Amazon.com a “blank check” for transportation improvements to lure the company’s second headquarters to Montgomery County. “Obviously Secretary [Pete K.] Rahn misspoke,” said Doug Mayer, Hogan’s communications director. “The transportation portion of the Amazon incentive package will include targeted investments in both transit and roads that will be financed over at least 10 years. It will be funded fully and appropriately.” (Wash. Post)

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Maryland Women's Caucus releases recommendations on sexual harassment prevention in General Assembly

The Maryland Women’s Caucus released a set of recommendations Wednesday on how to root out and prevent sexual harassment in the Maryland General Assembly. The bipartisan group of female lawmakers wants all legislators and staff to undergo additional and more frequent training. It also wants the legislature to hire a “sexual harassment specialist” who would track all complaints of misconduct and coordinate the enhanced training. (Balt. Sun)

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Days before paid sick leave becomes law, Maryland Senate advances bill to delay policy

The Maryland Senate on Wednesday advanced legislation to delay a policy entitling part-time workers to paid sick leave until July, setting up a showdown with the House of Delegates over one of the biggest policy initiatives of the legislature's current term. Businesses are on the hook to begin tracking the paid time off part-time workers can earn starting Sunday, under a timeline set in motion when Gov. Larry Hogan vetoed the legislation last spring and the legislature voted to override him last month. (Balt. Sun)

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Rapists who impregnate victims can now lose parental rights in Maryland

More than 10 years after supporters began pushing for it, Maryland's legislature has decided — with unanimous votes in the Senate and House — to enable impregnated rape victims to ask judges to end the parental rights of their rapists. Supporters say it has become embarrassing that a state known for its progressive politics is one of the last to adopt such a law. They also credit a growing sense of female empowerment for making the issue a priority. (AP)

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Larry Hogan supports leading Democrat's measure offering tax credits for living organ donors

Gov. Larry Hogan threw his support Wednesday behind legislation introduced by House Speaker Michael E. Busch — who owes his life to a liver transplant — to provide a tax credit for living organ donors. Hogan, a Republican, announced his approval of the measure sponsored by the Democratic legislative leader at a regular meeting of the Board of Public Works. Displaying the facial scars left by his recent surgery for skin cancer, the governor said he and his sometimes political rival had found common ground in both having struggled with life-threatening illnesses. (Balt. Sun)

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Legislation would add dental benefits for Maryland Medicaid recipients

Aaron Isle knows what it’s like to have a severe toothache but not to have the money to get it treated. Isle is one of more than 700,000 Medicaid-eligible Marylanders — roughly 13 percent of the population — whose insurance will cover an emergency room visit to treat oral infections or pain, but not the cost of dentistry to prevent or fix the underlying problems. Health care advocates from across the state traveled to Annapolis Wednesday to urge the General Assembly session to close what they call a glaring coverage gap in Maryland’s medical safety net for low-income adults. (Balt. Sun)

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Maryland senators say guarantees in funding framework would benefit the state

The budget deal struck in the U.S. Senate on Wednesday will benefit Maryland, but much of the hard work still remains, the state’s senators said. The bipartisan two-year funding framework announced on Wednesday simply sets out top-line budget figures for domestic and military spending; the hard work of line-item budgeting still remains, said Sen. Chris Van Hollen (D), who will be part of that process as a member of the Senate Committee on Appropriations. (News-Post)

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