Archive: August 2009

O'Malley to Name Two Cabinet Secretaries

Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley (D) will announce two mid-term Cabinet appointments Tuesday, elevating Beverley K. Swaim-Staley to transportation secretary and naming Edward Chow Jr. as veterans affairs secretary. Swaim-Staley has been acting transportation secretary since June, after the departure of...

By John Wagner | August 31, 2009; 3:51 PM ET | Comments (0)

Md. Officials Talk Up Popularity of Tax Amnesty

Given that the subject was tax delinquents, it seemed a tad ironic that Gov. Martin O'Malley's event this morning was the rare one of his that started on time. With a row of small businesses in Dundalk as a backdrop,...

By John Wagner | August 31, 2009; 12:35 PM ET | Comments (1)

Van Hollen Talks Health Care at Leisure World

There were no disruptions or wild bouts of yelling Friday when Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D) met with more than 250 constituents in a chandeliered ballroom at Leisure World of Maryland in Silver Spring. "Please be civil," one of the...

By Michael Laris | August 31, 2009; 10:30 AM ET | Comments (2)

First Click -- Maryland

Your Daily Download of the State's Top Political News and Analysis Monday, August 31, 2009: O'Malley, Franchot at Odds on Tax Amnesty?    Gov. Martin O'Malley (D) and the legislature's top Democrats will join Maryland business leaders this morning to kick...

By Aaron C. Davis | August 31, 2009; 8:30 AM ET | Comments (0)

Fruit Detente In Montgomery?

Ah, the Montgomery County fruit and veggie wars may be coming to an end. Robin Ficker, whose son Rob's fruit stand has been at the center of a dispute over equal treatment, said today that a judge has instructed him...

By Michael Laris | August 28, 2009; 6:21 PM ET | Comments (5)

First Click -- Maryland

Your Daily Download of the State's Top Political News and Analysis Friday, August 28, 2009: CANDIDATE: PUBLIC HAD TO WAIT TOO LONG TO LEARN GUARDS WOULDN'T BE PROSECUTED IN JAIL DEATH. "Why You?" - A regular feature that introduces candidates...

By Aaron C. Davis | August 28, 2009; 8:30 AM ET | Comments (1)

"Why You?": What We Want to Know From 2010 Candidates in Prince George's

With 2010 around the corner, candidates in Prince George's County at all levels of government are beginning to sculpt their campaign messages. In a semi-weekly series --"Why You?" -- we sit down with the county's political hopefuls to ask about...

By Jonathan Mummolo | August 28, 2009; 8:15 AM ET | Comments (2)

Maryland Lawmakers Asked to Give Up Some Pay

A day after a board forced 70,000 state employees to take as many as 10 unpaid furlough days, Maryland's Democratic legislative leaders said they would volunteer to do the same and urged every member of the General Assembly to follow...

By Anne Bartlett | August 27, 2009; 4:33 PM ET | Comments (2)

The Back Story on the Governor's Horseback Ride

NORTH EAST, Maryland - It's a Blue State, to be sure; and a Democratic administration, through and through. But it's not every day that a donkey's invited to Gov. Martin O'Malley's monthly cabinet meeting. Just 73 miles from Annapolis,...

By Aaron C. Davis | August 27, 2009; 11:59 AM ET | Comments (1)

First Click -- Maryland

Your Daily Download of the State's Top Political News and Analysis Thursday, August 27, 2009: A SLOT CITY FOR BALTIMORE? A group seeking to bring slot-machine gambling to Baltimore has revealed its vision for a mega-casino complete with "neighborhoods" of...

By Aaron C. Davis | August 27, 2009; 8:33 AM ET | Comments (1)

Plans For Baltimore's Celebration Casino Shared With State

A group seeking to bring slot-machine gambling to Baltimore today outlined its vision for Celebration Casino, a major entertainment venue to be built on the site of a demolished chemical distribution plant just south of the football stadium where the...

By John Wagner | August 26, 2009; 6:12 PM ET | Comments (1)

Complete List of Maryland Budget Cuts Now Available

The complete list of budget cuts being presented by Gov. Martin O'Malley (D) to the Board of Public Works this morning is available here. The meeting should be getting started shortly....

By John Wagner | August 26, 2009; 10:03 AM ET | Comments (0)

First Click -- Maryland

Your Daily Download of the State's Top Political News and Analysis Wednesday, August 26, 2009: BUDGET CUTS, BUDGET CUTS, BUDGET CUTS Welcome to Judgment Day - at least the latest one for Maryland. Gov. Martin O'Malley and the state's Board...

By Aaron C. Davis | August 26, 2009; 8:29 AM ET | Comments (2)

A Few More Details Available on O'Malley Cuts

Gov. Martin O'Malley's office released some additional details Tuesday afternoon about the budget cuts, including the impact by jurisdiction from proposed local aid reductions. Baltimore City is the biggest loser, facing a cut of $35.2 million. Montgomery and Prince George's...

By John Wagner | August 25, 2009; 4:38 PM ET | Comments (1)

Pr. George's Seeks to Avoid Repaying Furlough Dollars -- For Now

Citing a pending appeal, Prince George's County is seeking to avoid repaying $17 million in lost wages that a federal judge recently ordered be repaid after ruling the county's furlough plan was unconstitutional. The county's lawyers recently filed a motion...

By Jonathan Mummolo | August 25, 2009; 2:26 PM ET | Comments (0)

A Five-Year Government Shutdown?

Gov. Martin O'Malley's news conference today outlining a new round of budget cuts was a pretty dour affair. But it did feature one light-hearted moment. In recent weeks, O'Malley (D) has solicited suggested from citizens on how to close the...

By John Wagner | August 25, 2009; 2:15 PM ET | Comments (0)

O'Malley Outlines Next Round of Budget Cuts

A somber Gov. Martin O'Malley (D) has just wrapped up briefings to legislative leaders and the media on budget cuts that will be presented tomorrow to the Board of Public Works. Here are the highlights: * The total reductions are...

By John Wagner | August 25, 2009; 12:04 PM ET | Comments (4)

First Click -- Maryland

Your Daily Download of the State's Top Political News and Analysis Tuesday, August 25, 2009: FURLOUGH PLAN LEAKED Details of Gov. Martin O'Malley's plan to help close a budget shortfall through cuts to employees' pay emerged Monday. Tens of thousands...

By Aaron C. Davis | August 25, 2009; 8:29 AM ET | Comments (0)

Maryland Records Seventh Swine Flu Death

Gov. Martin O'Malley on Monday announced an elderly person from the Washington suburbs had become Maryland's seventh fatal H1N1, or Swine Flu, victim. He also said the state had become the first in the nation with 100 percent voluntary participation...

By Aaron C. Davis | August 24, 2009; 3:58 PM ET | Comments (0)

Md. Employees Face Up to 10 Days Unpaid Leave

Maryland state employees will be forced to take as many as 10 days of unpaid leave as part of a new round of budget cuts that Gov. Martin O'Malley plans to propose this week, aides said. The $470 million in...

By John Wagner | August 24, 2009; 3:15 PM ET | Comments (16)

First Click -- Maryland

Your Daily Download of the State's Top Political News and Analysis Monday, August 24, 2009: GOVERNOR IN PRINCE GEORGE'S TO TALK SWINE FLU Gov. Martin O'Malley this afternoon is expected to announce an enhanced "bio-surveillance" effort by the state to...

By Aaron C. Davis | August 24, 2009; 8:24 AM ET | Comments (1)

First Click - Maryland

Your Daily Download of the State's Top Political News and Analysis Friday, August 21, 2009: Welcome to "Maryland Politics" - a new "Maryland Moment" for the Old Line State. Our new name is one of several changes you'll notice in...

By Aaron C. Davis | August 21, 2009; 8:08 AM ET | Comments (1)

Rep. Edwards to Talk Health Reform Tonight with Young Dems

U.S. Rep. Donna Edwards (D-Md.) will meet with the Prince George's County Young Democrats tonight to talk health care. Specifically, she'll give a talk on how proposed reforms would affect Marylanders and residents of the county, and will take questions...

By Jonathan Mummolo | August 20, 2009; 3:24 PM ET | Comments (3)

First Click -- Maryland

Your Daily Download of the State's Top Political News and Analysis Thursday, August 20, 2009: GOVERNOR TAKES ISSUE WITH JUDGE'S FURLOUGH RULING Gov. Martin O'Malley Wednesday night took issue with calling furloughs a "politically expedient" remedy to government budget woes,...

By Aaron C. Davis | August 20, 2009; 8:12 AM ET | Comments (1)

Pr. George's Officials Respond to Furloughs Decision

Prince George's County Council Chairperson Marilynn M. Bland (D-Clinton) weighed in this afternoon (sort of) on a bombshell federal court decision Tuesday which found the county's furloughs last fiscal year to be unconstitutional. Bland said the council was "disappointed" by...

By Jonathan Mummolo | August 19, 2009; 6:25 PM ET | Comments (1)

End-of-Life Politics: The View From A Hospice

For people who have spent years wrestling with the emotional complexities of caring for the dying in Maryland, the recent spasm of angry, hyper-charged debate over end-of-life issues and health-care reform has been cause for some major head shaking. Ann...

By Michael Laris | August 19, 2009; 5:52 PM ET | Comments (0)

First Click -- Maryland (Updated)

Your Daily Download of the State's Top Political News and Analysis Wednesday, August 19, 2009: FURLOUGH BOMBSHELL "...the Court cannot merely give lip service to the fundamental principles that undergird the Contract Clause of the United States Constitution. To do...

By Aaron C. Davis | August 19, 2009; 8:34 AM ET | Comments (0)

First Click -- Maryland

Your Daily Download of the State's Top Political News and Analysis Tuesday, August 18, 2009 Baltimore Police Probing Delegate's Engagement Hoax Del. Jon S. Cardin (D-Baltimore County) is at the center of a police investigation into apparent misuse of Baltimore...

By Aaron C. Davis | August 18, 2009; 7:32 AM ET | Comments (2)

Lt. Gov. Brown Adds Mayor Ortiz To Reshuffled Staff

Lt. Gov. Anthony G. Brown (D) is adding some heft to his small staff with the addition of a mayor. Adam Ortiz, mayor of the Prince George's town of Edmonston, will join Brown's office this week as a deputy chief...

By John Wagner | August 17, 2009; 8:34 AM ET | Comments (0)

First Click -- Maryland

Your Daily Download of the State's Top Political News and Analysis Monday, August 17, 2009: DECISION WEEK ON BUDGET CUTS On Saturday it became obvious why Gov. Martin O'Malley canceled a $12,000 reception and his staff spent much of last...

By Aaron C. Davis | August 17, 2009; 5:03 AM ET | Comments (0)

Politicking at MACo Conference is Low Key

What a difference an election cycle makes. Four years ago, then-Democratic gubernatorial hopefuls Martin O'Malley and Doug Duncan took full advantage of the networking opportunities at the annual summer conferences in Ocean City hosted by the Maryland Municipal League and...

By John Wagner | August 16, 2009; 4:06 PM ET | Comments (0)

You're Up: Marylanders Take a Swing at Shrinking Government

Gov. Martin O'Malley asked for ideas on how to cut hundreds of millions from Maryland's budget. What will be done with them? Officials released 351 pages worth of the suggestions this afternoon. Among them: "purchase a bankrupt hotel or motel...

By Michael Laris | August 14, 2009; 1:40 PM ET | Comments (2)

First Click -- Maryland

Your Daily Download of the State's Top Political News and Analysis Friday, August 14, 2009: Ocean City or Bust: It's Friday and all of the hundreds of state and local officials going to the Maryland Association of Counties conference have...

By Aaron C. Davis | August 14, 2009; 11:49 AM ET | Comments (0)

Budget Suggestions Shelved Until Friday

Marylanders will have to wait until tomorrow morning to see what suggestions their fellow citizens have for cutting the state budget. Gov. Martin O'Malley's office was scheduled to release some 2,500 suggestions -- filling about 600 pages when printed out...

By John Wagner | August 13, 2009; 1:43 PM ET | Comments (0)

McDonough Expects Ehrlich's Decision in January

Beside talking about his own intentions regarding a gubernatorial run, Del. Patrick L. McDonough (R-Baltimore County) was quite chatty last night regarding those of former Maryland governor Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. (R). McDonough said his understanding is that Ehrlich will...

By John Wagner | August 13, 2009; 10:36 AM ET | Comments (1)

First Click -- Maryland

Your Daily Download of the State's Top Political News and Analysis Welcome to First Click - Maryland, your essential new daily guide to politics in the Old Line State. Each weekday morning we'll provide you with a look at the...

By Aaron C. Davis | August 13, 2009; 8:40 AM ET | Comments (0)

McDonough Latest to Look at Md. Governor's Race

Add Del. Patrick L. McDonough (R-Baltimore County) to the list of Republicans looking at the 2010 governor's race with seemingly long odds. "I'm testing the water, so to speak," McDonough said in an interview, explaining that he will spend coming...

By John Wagner | August 12, 2009; 8:23 PM ET | Comments (3)

GOP Legislators Reject Pelura's Push for 'Contract With Maryland'

James Pelura may be staying put as chairman of the Maryland GOP, but the infighting has hardly subsided among the state's Republican leaders. The latest spat centers on Pelura's plans to develop a "Contract with Maryland" heading into the 2010...

By Christopher Dean Hopkins | August 12, 2009; 2:57 PM ET | Comments (0)

Lt. Gov. Brown Shares 'Cybersecurity' Vision for State at MACo

Lt. Gov. Anthony G. Brown shared his vision this morning for fostering "jobs that could create the 21st century's Silicon Valley of cybersecurity" in Maryland. Brown (D) spoke at the Maryland Association of Counties convention in Ocean City on a...

By Anne Bartlett | August 12, 2009; 12:39 PM ET | Comments (0)

First Click -- Maryland

Your Daily Download of the State's Top Political News and Analysis Welcome to First Click - Maryland, your essential new daily guide to politics in the Old Line State. Each weekday morning we'll provide you with a look at the...

By Aaron C. Davis | August 12, 2009; 8:24 AM ET | Comments (0)

Budget Briefing: O'Malley Plans Another $470 Million in Cuts

A panel from Gov. Martin O'Malley's administration provided some of the more interesting morsels to emerge from this afternoon's legislative budget briefing, which just ended. Among them: * O'Malley (D) is preparing to propose about $470 million in additional cuts...

By Anne Bartlett | August 11, 2009; 3:47 PM ET | Comments (1)

Property Tax Revenue Up for Counties, but State Aid May Be Cut

Maryland lawmakers, who are eyeing aid to counties as a big target for cutting the state budget, will get an extensive look this afternoon at how county coffers are faring. According to state legislative analysts, collection of property taxes in...

By Christopher Dean Hopkins | August 11, 2009; 12:00 PM ET | Comments (2)

First Click -- Maryland

Your Daily Download of the State's Top Political News and Analysis Welcome to First Click -- Maryland, your essential new daily guide to politics in the Old Line State. Each weekday morning we'll provide you with a look at the...

By Aaron C. Davis | August 11, 2009; 7:57 AM ET | Comments (1)

An Early, Crowded Field for Pr. George's County Exec Race

With 2010 fast-approaching, it seems like as good a time as any to take a look at the probable field for the upcoming race for Prince George's County Executive. With term-limited County Executive Jack B. Johnson (D) on his way...

By Jonathan Mummolo | August 10, 2009; 5:00 PM ET | Comments (0)

O'Malley: Seacrets is Out for This Year's MACo

Consider it the latest casualty of Maryland's budget cuts: Gov. Martin O'Malley's office is announcing today that it is canceling a late-night reception at Seacrets, a sprawling, open-air bar on the main drag in Ocean City, during this week's MACo...

By John Wagner | August 10, 2009; 2:11 PM ET | Comments (1)

First Click -- Maryland

Your Daily Download of the State's Top Political News and Analysis Welcome to First Click -- Maryland, your essential new daily guide to politics in the Old Line State. Each weekday morning we'll provide you with a look at the...

By Aaron C. Davis | August 10, 2009; 7:14 AM ET | Comments (0)

Prince George's Continues to Battle Vacant Homes

Prince George's County has enacted a new law that requires vacant houses to be registered so that the county can better keep track of homes emptying because of the foreclosure crisis before they become eyesores or havens for crime and...

By Jonathan Mummolo | August 7, 2009; 3:01 PM ET | Comments (12)

O'Malley Chides Anne Arundel Council for Slots Delay

Gov. Martin O'Malley (D) today prodded -- and not so gently -- the Anne Arundel County Council to act on zoning legislation required to allow the largest slot-machine gambling facililty envisioned by the state to operate. "I wish the Anne...

By John Wagner | August 6, 2009; 4:07 PM ET | Comments (7)

O'Malley to Marylanders: Bring Us Your Budget-Cutting Ideas

Somewhere amidst the cranks, digressions, impractical riffs, redundancies, pet peeves and throwaway lines, there are veins of gold. At least that's one of the big ideas behind throwing open the mechanics of everyday government to the tinkering of the Internet...

By Michael Laris | August 6, 2009; 1:33 PM ET | Comments (4)

Bigger Baltimore Slots Site On Track, Consultant Says

While the fate of some Maryland slots sites remains uncertain, a consultant for the group seeking to operate a parlor in downtown Baltimore says plans are on track for a larger facility than proposed -- and at a slightly different...

By John Wagner | August 6, 2009; 12:04 PM ET | Comments (4)

Solar Panels Coming to O'Malley's Home

Government House in Annapolis will soon be home not only to Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley (D) and his family -- but to a pair of solar panels as well. The state is planning to install the panels next week on...

By John Wagner | August 6, 2009; 11:16 AM ET | Comments (0)

Mikulski to Brief Reporters on Ankle En Route to Hill

Sen. Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.), who has been recovering from a severely broken ankle, is scheduled to address this reporters at a Baltimore medical center this morning before returning to Capitol Hill to vote on the nomination of Judge Sonia Sotomayor...

By John Wagner | August 6, 2009; 10:38 AM ET | Comments (0)

O'Malley Has 2010 Campaign Manager On Board

No big-name challengers to Martin O'Malley (D) have yet to emerge, but the governor seems to be taking little for granted as he heads toward a 2010 election year in which the sour economy is expected to play a defining...

By John Wagner | August 5, 2009; 2:33 PM ET | Comments (4)

Kendel Ehrlich for Anne Arundel Exec. -- Just the Latest Rumor?

Ever since Kendel Ehrlich's days as first lady, there has been no shortage of speculation about whether she has a future in politics apart from that of her husband, former governor Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. (R). The last rumor making...

By John Wagner | August 5, 2009; 2:00 PM ET | Comments (2)

Markets Drive State Pension Fund Down 20 Percent

The number is in for Maryland's public pension system, and it's not good: The pool to fund state employee retirement costs has shrunk by more than 20 percent in the past 12 months. From its high point, the value of...

By Aaron C. Davis | August 5, 2009; 1:00 PM ET | Comments (1)

Pr. George's Exec Johnson 'Very Much' Considering Statewide Run

As the chairs were being stacked and the moon bounce was being deflated, Prince George's County Executive Jack B. Johnson (D) was still posing for pictures, shaking hands with constituents and grabbing the ears of political players last night after...

By Jonathan Mummolo | August 5, 2009; 10:24 AM ET | Comments (25)

State GOP Chairman Says He's Staying Put

Maryland GOP Chairman James Pelura, who largely avoided the media as fellow party leaders considered ousting him last month, surfaced today, sounding feisty and determined to stay the course. "I'm not resigning," Pelura said in an interview. "I'm not going...

By John Wagner | August 4, 2009; 5:14 PM ET | Comments (1)

Meet Your County Executive Tonight

Want some face time with Prince George's County Executive Jack B. Johnson (D)? He'll be on hand for "National Night Out" this evening, a chance for community groups to mingle with local law enforcement and public officials. First stop will...

By Jonathan Mummolo | August 4, 2009; 3:41 PM ET | Comments (0)

Legislative Adviser: Cuts Need to Be Deeper

Budget cuts proposed last month by Gov. Martin O'Malley (D) will save the state about $280 million this year. But most of the savings won't help resolve a projected shortfall next year of more than $2 billion, according to a...

By John Wagner | August 3, 2009; 3:53 PM ET | Comments (6)

Maryland: More Blue than New York or California?

If the latest Gallup poll is right, the exhaustive history book. "Maryland: A Middle Temperament," might need to be renamed something more like: "Maryland: Deep Blue and Getting Bluer." Maryland is the nation's third-bluest state, behind Massachusetts and Hawaii, according...

By Aaron C. Davis | August 3, 2009; 3:30 PM ET | Comments (3)

O'Malley Will Back Light Rail for Purple Line

Gov. Martin O'Malley is expected to endorse a light rail line over bus rapid transit with his announcement Tuesday that Maryland will pursue federal transit money to build a Purple Line linking Prince George's and Montgomery counties. His administration will...

By Lisa Rein | August 3, 2009; 2:15 PM ET | Comments (6)

 

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