Daedalus Books to close Columbia store, vacate 134,000-square-foot warehouse

Daedalus Books & Music is closing its Columbia store and 38-year-old wholesaling business following an apparent sale of its retail arm. The beloved bargain book purveyor announced the decision on social media. Daedalus' outlet at 9645 Gerwig Lane hasn't set an official closing date, said Helaine Harris, the bookseller's chief operating officer. She declined to comment on whether the company has been sold. (Balt. Bus. Journal)

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February 14 // Citing predatory lending in Baltimore, lawmakers question reduced consumer enforcement

Maryland’s two centers, noting a history of predatory real estate practices in Baltimore, called on the Trump administration Wednesday to abandon plans to strip a division of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau of its enforcement powers. Nearly seven years after Democrats created the bureau, the Republican administration has proposed a major reorganization to “prevent actions that unduly burden the financial industry and limit consumer choice.” Some of the proposed changes were included in the $4.4 trillion budget unveiled by the White House this week. (Balt. Sun)

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Annapolis City Council passes Market House lease

Nearly nine months ago, the city of Annapolis solicited proposals from anyone that wanted to restore the Market House to its former glory. In January, the City Council made their de facto choice, agreeing to negotiate a lease with New Market LLC, a group eager to fill the downtown space with fresh seafood, produce, flowers and long, rustic tables aimed to encourage community. On Monday, Council members, after nearly 30 hours of fine tuning in closed session, voted to pass a lease with New Market — ending a months-long process to secure a new tenant in the historic space. (Capital)

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Columbia flex building sells for $7.2 million

A multi-tenant, single-story flex building in Columbia has sold for $7.2 million. A joint venture of Feldman Bergin Properties and Fortified Property Group acquired the 81,000-square-foot flex/light-industrial building at 9176 Red Branch Road from ShoreGate Partners of Easton. It was the second purchase by a Feldman Bergin/Fortified partnership in Howard County. In the fall, the partnership acquired a three-building portfolio less than a mile away on Route 108 in Columbia. (Balt. Sun)

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Eight creative ventures chosen to compete in MICA Up/Start competition

Eight finalists have been selected from a pool of over 20 to vie for $100,000 in prizes in the Maryland Institute College of Art's third annual UP/Start Venture Competition. The school's UP/Start Venture Competition, spearheaded by the Joseph Meyerhoff Center for Career Development, aims to provide capital and mentorship to help student ventures grow into sustainable businesses. The finalists were selected following a “pop up and pitch” event on Feb. 2. (Balt. Bus. Journal)

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Bank regulators approve Howard Bank's purchase of 1st Mariner

Howard Bancorp expects to close its acquisition of 1st Mariner Bank on Feb. 28 after receiving all the needed approvals from banking regulators. The parent of Howard Bank announced the $163.4 million acquisition of 1st Mariner Bank in August, creating the Baltimore area's largest locally based bank with more than $2 billion in assets. On March 1, after the deal closes, 1st Mariner customers will become Howard Bank customers. (Balt. Sun)

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Prince George's County plans to 'press the issue' after FBI snub

The suburban Maryland county has long trailed its neighbors when it comes to the federal government's local footprint, but the FBI's prospective move to Greenbelt or Landover stood to change that in a big way. (Wash. Bus. Journal)

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MDOT investigating alleged bullying, unequal treatment of employees

The Maryland Department of Transportation is investigating allegations of bullying and unequal treatment after two employees came forward claiming a supervisor has been giving test materials to help preferred subordinates receive a promotion. The allegations target a supervisor within the State Highway Administration who is described as a “bully, menace, unprofessional,” according to documents obtained by The Capital. (Capital)

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