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Posted at 5:43 AM ET, 12/ 6/2010

Lori's A.M. Buzz: Snow and inauguration day

By Washington Post editors

Good morning. It's Monday and it's inauguration day in Montgomery and Prince George's counties, where some new faces will join familiar ones on county councils and in the county executive's office. More details on the ceremonies and inaugural balls below.

Coming up:

Snow flurries? I keep telling myself it's not so bad outside, but then, who am I kidding? It's COLD out there. The Capital Weather Gang is predicting temperatures in the mid-30's or low 40's with strong winds -- possibly 40 miles per hour at times. There's even a chance of flurries. Coat, hat, scarf, gloves -- hmmm -- maybe it's just best to stay inside.

New starts.In Prince George's County, where a new county executive, Rushern Baker, is being sworn in, the theme of the day is "On the Path to Greatness." Baker says he's looking to the county's future. But its past includes the recent arrests of outgoing County Executive Jack B. Johnson and his wife Leslie Johnson in a widespread corruption investigation. Leslie Johnson is being sworn in as a member of the County Council.

Leggett's second term. In Montgomery, County Executive Isiah Leggett will be sworn in for his second term. Montgomery held its inaugural ball Sunday night at the Hilton in Rockville. Money raised from the event will help fund arts and humanities programs in a county that's currently grappling with a budget shortfall of more than $300 million. We'll have live coverage of both swearing-in ceremonies so be sure to check back with us later in the day.

Protests planned. Groups say they will stage protests near a Germantown clinic, where a doctor who performs late-term abortions is slated to begin work Monday. LeRoy Carhart is one of the few physicians in the U.S. who performs the controversial procedure. Protesters say they plan to stage regular, peaceful demonstrations at Germantown Reproductive Health Services, where Carhart is employed.

Today's headlines:

Pepco investigation. Just in case you missed it over the weekend, be sure to check out The Post's investigation of Pepco and why it's been so difficult for the utility to keep the lights on in good weather as well as bad. Along with the story, there's a great interactive map that allows you to track this year's outages by neighborhood. We'd also like to hear how Pepco service has been in your neighborhood.

You call this "express?" Some Virginia Railway Express riders are no longer VRE riders. After months of delays on the commuter rail service, some folks have decided driving is much easier. The stats: between July 12, when a new contractor took over management of the trains, and Nov. 30, there have been an estimated 488 delays and 10 cancellations. Forty-six of those delays were more than an hour long. We look into why this is happening and what's being done about it.

What's in a name? A dispute has broken out over -- of all things -- the Leisure World name. Seems the daughter of the developer of the "active adult" communities says the company owns the right to the name and the distinctive steel globe that graces the entrance to the development. Initially, she asked for $6,000 a month in licensing fees, but has since reduced that to $1 a year for 30 years. Still, folks in Silver Spring, where Leisure World has been a fixture for 44 years, aren't sure they're willing to pay. It's the principle of the matter.

In short. Dr. Gridlock walks you through changes in the SmartBenefits commute program. (Post); a Maryland man's hunting companion mistook him for a deer and accidentally shot him (The Baltimore Sun); meanwhile, a deer crashed through a window of an Accokeek home damaging furnishings and scaring residents until the buck was shot. (NBC 4)

Other items:

Kennedy Center honors. Sunday night was the annual Kennedy Center honors. This year's honorees included, Bill T. Jones, Jerry Herman, Merle Haggard, Oprah Winfrey and Paul McCartney. Some unexpected moments during the ceremony? Julia Roberts introduced Oprah, while Alec Baldwin did the introduction for McCartney.

Yes, Virginia, there really is a Farmville. If you're a fan of the uber-popular Facebook game Farmville, turns out it's not merely a "virtual" town. There are two real Farmville's in the U.S. -- Farmville, N.C., and Farmville, Va. Have the urge to visit? Virginia's Farmville is about a three-hour drive from Norfolk. Once there, you can buy Amish furniture and study Civil War and Civil Rights history. No word on whether you'll find any "mystery eggs" though. (Associated Press)

That's it for now. Thanks for reading and stay warm if you can. Be sure to check back for more news throughout the day -- including photos and stories about today's inauguration ceremonies in Montgomery and Prince George's counties. We'll also be tracking whether we do end up seeing those snow flurries after all.

By Washington Post editors  | December 6, 2010; 5:43 AM ET
Categories:  Crime and Public Safety, DC, Loris AM Buzz, Maryland, Traffic and Transportation, Virginia, Weather  | Tags:  loris am buzz  
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