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First Click -- Maryland

First Click

Your daily download of Maryland's top political news and analysis

Thursday, October 22, 2009:


State aborts effort to save money through refinancing
The bad news: The fiscal hits keep coming. Maryland Treasurer Nancy K. Kopp says a spike in interest rates in the last seven days has prompted her to scrap plans to refinance $600 million in municipal bonds - a move projected to save the state tens of millions of dollars, writes Danielle Ulman in the Daily Record. Ulman quotes Kopp saying she's still hopeful the state can save money by refinancing when the time is right. Maryland is one of four states to recently nix refinancing plans.

The good news: Maryland was able to sell $200 million in new bonds on Wednesday at a 20-year low interest rate, writes Ryan Sharrow in the Baltimore Business Journal.

Other Fiscal News: The Maryland Stadium Authority on Wednesday temporarily withdrew a request for the state to help pay for a new scoreboard and millions of dollars in other improvements to Camden Yards, writes Andy Rosen of MarylandRoporter. The authority is expected to reintroduce the request in two weeks.

Obama uses Maryland backdrop to tout small business bailout
obama-md.jpg (AP Photo)
President Barack Obama traveled to a small business in Hyattsville on Wednesday to announce plans to shift federal bailout spending toward small businesses. Gov. Martin O'Malley, a large contingent from the state's congressional delegation and Prince George's leaders were in attendance.

Free speech returns to MoCo, PG parks
The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission has indefinitely suspended a series of rules slammed as unconstitutional by the ACLU, writes The Post's Michael Laris. Maryland Politics Watch first posted the interim rules here. Park police will no longer stop someone for holding a campaign sign without a permit, as happened to a volunteer campaigning with Montgomery GOP candidate Robin Ficker on the Fourth of July. The park rule makers also dropped permit requirements for collecting signatures and conducting interviews.

Another challenge: ACLU of Maryland said Wednesday it's asking for an investigation into reports of "unusually invasive and intentionally degrading strip searches" at the Ordnance Road Correctional Center in Glen Burnie, including forced "striptease" by inmates, writes Erin Cox of the Maryland Gazette

Briefly:

  • NAACP branches from across the Eastern Shore pushing for reform to eliminate racial parity in health care want to talk to U.S. Rep. Frank Kratovil.

  • A commission awarded Maryland's second slot machine gambling license to a planned casino in the northeastern corner of the state Wednesday, writes The Post's John Wagner.

  • The Post's Miranda Spivack looks at smart-growth proposals in Montgomery County.

  • A proposed West Virginia wind power project will harm a tiny, endangered bat and its developers should be should obtain permits under the Endangered Species Act, lawyers argued in federal court in Greenbelt on Wednesday, writes the AP's Alex Dominguez.

  • The General Assembly's workgroup on State, County and Municipal Fiscal Relationships meets again today.

  • Maryland Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler will be on the "Political Pulse" tonight at 9 p.m.

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    By Aaron C. Davis  |  October 22, 2009; 8:04 AM ET
    Categories:  Aaron C. Davis , First Click  
    Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Free speech returns to Montgomery and Prince George's parks
    Next: Rift among residents seen in Pr. George's senior housing issue

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