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First Click

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

Thursday, Nov. 12, 2009:


No porn policy for University of Maryland. It's "impossible" board says. Prince George's criticized for new tax districts, documents show nonprofit overbilled MoCo.

Critics say Prince George's misusing special tax districts
"Struggling to find ways to compete in the Washington region and stimulate major development, Prince George's County is increasingly creating special taxing districts, a strategy used sparingly in the past," writes Ovetta Wiggins in The Post. Critics worry county officials might be overusing the tactic instead.

No porn policy for UMD

"Regents of Maryland's state university system voted Wednesday to defy a legislative order to regulate pornography on campus, concluding that any such rules would be impossible to enforce," writes The Post's Daniel de Vise. "The legislature gave Maryland's state-funded universities until Dec. 1 to submit policies on "the displaying or screening of obscene films and materials" after the proposed screening last spring of the adult film "Pirates II: Stagnetti's Revenge" at the University of Maryland's College Park campus.
The Baltimore Sun's take here.

O'Malley's campaign manager urges "deep breath"

In a memo to top financial backers Wednesday, Tom Russell, Gov. Martin O'Malley's campaign manager urged contributors "to take a deep breath" and argued that O'Malley remains well-positioned to win re-election next year, despite Democratic losses last week in Virginia and New Jersey," reports The Post's John Wagner, with the text of the letter: "Will it be Michael Steele, Larry Hogan, Delegate Pat McDonough or some other name we haven't heard yet? Frankly, it doesn't matter who the Republicans settle on," Russell wrote. "We'll be prepared for them, and we will beat them."

Documents show MoCo nonprofit overbilled county

"Centro Familia, the Wheaton nonprofit whose contracts are under scrutiny by Montgomery County and the FBI, overbilled Montgomery's health and human services agency $85,000 in the past year, according to a county analysis obtained by The Washington Post," writes Miranda Spivack. "The analysis cited possible "duplicate charges" and said county funds might have helped finance Centro Familia enterprises that were not linked to its county contracts."

Redmer adds to early crowd running for Baltimore Senate seat

"Alfred W. Redmer Jr., the former Republican state delegate and insurance commissioner, announced Wednesday his return to politics with a run for the Maryland Senate," Laura Smitherman writes in The Sun. "Redmer's entry into the race escalates early campaigning in Baltimore County for the seat that's expected to be vacated by Republican Andrew P. Harris, who plans to run for Congress a second time. Republican Del. J.B. Jennings has filed papers to become a candidate. Baltimore County Executive James T. Smith Jr., a Democrat, also is considering entering the race."

Briefly:

  • Former governor Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. (R), who is still mulling a rematch against O'Malley (D), is scheduled to address the state's Republican convention on Saturday in Bowie. Aides say not to expect any major announcement about whether he has decided to run.

  • State revenue may be leveling out, or even on the rise after two years of declines.

  • First Lady Katie O'Malley kicked off a statewide letter-writing campaign to military members for the nonprofit Blue Star Families on Veterans Day with 300 letters from students at Dumbarton Middle School.

  • Prince George's may stop filling pot holes and mowing medians as a result of state cuts in transportation funding.

  • American Eurocopter has dropped its protest over the bidding process for new Maryland State Police medevac helicopters.

  • NOAA deploys new 'smart buoy' off Annapolis.

  • W.Va pushing to dismiss power line that would cross Maryland.

  • Maryland, DC and Virgnia join forces for international tourism marketing pitch. The three have spent $60,000 to develop the site, www.capitalregionusa.org.
  • Check back here later this morning for a Q&A with Del. Gerron S. Levi, candidate for Prince George's County Executive, in Maryland Politics' latest installment of "Why You?"
    "I'm in the race because I don't feel as if there is the kind of vision to address what I consider to be the pressing issues for the county. At least I haven't heard it," Levi says.


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    By Aaron C. Davis  |  November 12, 2009; 7:38 AM ET
    Categories:  Aaron C. Davis , First Click  
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    Next: "Why You?": Gerron Levi in Prince George's

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