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Obama's Budget, Same-Sex Marriage, The State Of The City, and Oyster Survival Rates
Tuesday, February 14, 2012
Tuesday, February 14, 2012
Maryland Congressman Chris Van Hollen says President Obama's budget proposal is a balanced approach to controlling the deficit. Obama submitted a roughly three-point-eight-trillion-dollar budget to Congress yesterday, and it's getting strong opposition from Republicans (via our wire service; more here from the Baltimore Sun and here from the Baltimore Business Journal and here from the Daily Record).
Maryland's House of Delegates could be moving closer to a vote on same-sex marriage. Governor Martin O'Malley says his same-sex marriage bill could move out of committee to the full House as soon as this week -- but House Speaker Michael Busch (who decides when to move the bill along) says through an aide that no plans have yet been finalized. Governor O'Malley says that the measure is still a couple votes short of the 71 necessary for the House to pass it,and he's working to drum up more support within his own Democratic party -- and from Republicans as well (via our wire service and the Baltimore Sun and marylandreporter.com).
The General Assembly's Ethics Committee has reportedly decided on what action to take on State Senator Ulysses Currie. The Ethics Committee has been meeting behind closed doors, and Senate President Mike Miller says he doesn't yet know what action it's decided to take, but adds that the Senate will likely follow whatever recommendations are made. Senator Currie was aquitted of bribery charges during a federal trial last year -- but during that trial admitted to ethics violations, including failing to report about hundreds of thousands of dollars in consulting income from Shoppers Food Warehouse (via marylandreporter.com).
Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake outlined her plans for the city during her annual State of the City address yesterday afternoon. She talked about improvements in crime prevention and her plans to reduce Baltimore's property tax as a way of drawing new residents to the city. WYPR’s Matt Purdy was at City Hall for the speech, and filed this report. The full text of the speech is available here from the Baltimore Business Journal, which has coverage here of Rawlings-Blake's proposal for a higher bottle tax to pay for school construction. And there's more on the speech here from the Baltimore Sun.
Mayor Rawlings-Blake will be launching Baltimore's "Clean Community Competition" today -- a challenge to city residents to clear the trash out of their neighborhoods. For more information, call 410-545-6189 (via the Baltimore Sun).
Good news for Chesapeake Bay oysters -- and for the watermen who harvest them. The Department of Natural Resources says the bay's oysters are showing their highest survival rate in more than a quarter-century. Scientists also say that the number of baby oysters is up -- and the rates of the diseases that kill oysters are at their lowest levels on record (via the Daily Times).
Home sales are down in the Baltimore area. Metropolitan Regional Information Systems says January sales dropped five percent (via our wire service; more here from the Baltimore Sun).
A federal judge is allowing a lawsuit against the Baltimore City Police Department to move forward (via the Baltimore Sun).
Harford County teachers are closer to getting the $625 bonus that other county workers got back in December (via the Aegis).
And a ban on Valentine's Day has been lifted at an elementary school near Frederick. Last year, school leaders at Walkersville Elementary had eliminated Valentines Day observances to avoid inappropriate student romance. But criticism from parents forced a reversal, and kids at the school will be allowed to exchange cards today (via the Frederick News Post).
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