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East Side, West Side, Scooters All Around

16 hours ago

As Baltimore’s Bike Share program collapsed last summer, the city replaced it with a dockless electric scooter program.

Now, the Baltimore Sun reports that the bike vendor, Bewegen Technologies, tried to bill the city half a million dollars more than the initial amount and asked the city to write a report on stolen bicycles large enough to allow the company to make an insurance claim. City officials refused.

Meanwhile, the scooters appear to be a big hit, even in predominately black neighborhoods sometimes bypassed by innovation.

https://www.pss-1.com/

Well, for starters, he’s the president of Persistent Surveillance System, a Dayton, Ohio, firm that operates aerial surveillance systems.

Shortly after the Freddie Gray riots in 2015, the city police department used private funds to have Ross McNutt set up an aerial surveillance system. The department didn’t tell the city’s elected leaders. The police squashed the program after a Bloomberg Magazine article that created a public outcry. Now, Ross McNutt is back, trying to get approval for his plans for a camera-equipped drone and he’s no stranger to trial and error.

Dominique Maria Bonessi

Baltimore City Schools’ board of commissioners voted seven to zero at Tuesday night’s meeting in favor of closing Banneker Blake Academy in north Baltimore. WYPR’s Dominique Maria Bonessi was at the meeting and spoke to Morning Edition Host Nathan Sterner about the board's decision.

AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall, file

Maryland has filed a legal challenge to Matthew Whitaker’s appointment as U.S. acting attorney general. The move is part of an ongoing lawsuit aimed at protecting the Affordable Care Act.

Mary Rose Madden / wypr

This story aired on NPR's Morning Edition.

Hundreds of Catholic bishops meeting in Baltimore this week were expecting to vote on concrete measures to address clergy sex abuse. But as their meeting got underway, the Vatican told the U.S. bishops not to take any action yet. 

 

Dominique Maria Bonessi

 

Parents and faculty from Banneker Blake Academy, a charter school in North Baltimore, gathered in front of city school headquarters Monday to protest the threatened closing of the school next January.

School officials say the academy didn’t meet requirements for renewal of its charter, but advocates argue it goes beyond that.

MyJon / Flickr / Creative Commons

Despite their growing numbers in the U.S. population, Latino voters turn out in notoriously low numbers on Election Day. WYPR went looking for Latino voters at polls on Tuesday to see who showed up and who they voted for.

Maryland Department of Planning

A federal court in Baltimore threw out Maryland’s congressional district map on Wednesday as unconstitutional. The three-judge panel gave state lawmakers until March to submit new districts.

Rachel Baye

Maryland voters overwhelmingly backed a second term for Republican Gov. Larry Hogan Tuesday, but at the same time they rejected several Republican candidates for state and local offices.

On Wednesday, state leaders reflected on what that means — or doesn’t mean — for the state.

John Lee

Baltimore County’s next county executive, Democrat Johnny Olszewski,  will take office in one month, which means he has to put together a transition team quickly, starting the morning after the election.

“We’re going to have to assemble a plan to build a diverse team that reflects the strength of our county and welcome and solicit even more feedback about what people want to see for their neighborhoods,” he said Tuesday night.

AP Photo/Patrick Semansky

Governor Larry Hogan easily won re-election Tuesday, the first Republican governor to do so since Theodore McKeldin in 1954.

As the polls predicted, Hogan won a blow-out victory, besting Democrat Ben Jealous by 16 points.

He took the stage at his victory party at the Westin Hotel in Annapolis in a room packed with more than a thousand family members, friends and supporters, jubilant that he had won again in a state with a two-to-one Democratic edge in voter registration.

Mileah Kromer

Much of WYPR's reporting on statewide and local elections was live, but you can hear a few of Tom Hall's interviews below.

Mary Rose Madden

Maryland voters flocked to the polls Tuesday, despite the miserable weather, to cast ballots for governor, state representatives and a host of local officials.

But in some ways, the election was as much about national politics as it was local races.

The latest Maryland election news from NPR.

Credit (L) @MBCarozzaSenate/Twitter, (R) Joel McCord

 

With the polls opening Tuesday, Maryland Republicans are hoping to break Democrats’ veto-proof majority in the state Senate by flipping five seats — an effort Republican leaders have dubbed the “drive for five.”

They’re looking at two districts in Baltimore County, one in Frederick County and one on the lower Eastern Shore, where incumbent Senator Jim Mathias is locked in a tough race with first term Delegate Mary Beth Carozza.

Mary Rose Madden / wypr

Back in 2008 and again in 2012 Maryland lawmakers and gambling advocates sold voters on slots and casinos by telling them all that revenue would boost the state's education budget. But that money only replaced existing funds rather than adding to them.

So, come Election Day in Maryland this year, voters will get to decide on an amendment to the state Constitution that would require that gambling revenues slated for schools be used to supplement existing money rather than replace it.

AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana

This post has been updated.

It’s a windy autumn Saturday at the Bladensburg Festival del Rio, an annual event for environmental groups to entertain and educate Latinos about environmental issues.

There are tents set up with different activities for kids, a live band, and kayaking rides on the Anacostia. I’m here to ask Latinos voters how interested they are in the upcoming midterm election. Bayardo Lune, sits in the shade about to enjoy his lunch. He came to the US 20 years ago from Mexico and says he’s not sure if he’s going to vote on Tuesday.

WYPR's General Election 2018 Coverage

Oct 31, 2018
AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana

The WYPR News Team has been following the race for Baltimore County ExecutiveMidday has interviewed more than a dozen candidates for their 'Conversations with the Candidates' series, and below you'll find stories and interviews on election-related issues from On the Record, and more.   

You can listen and watch WYPR's live election coverage on November 6 from 8 pm - 11 pm. Find your polling place here

Dominique Maria Bonessi

Baltimore City’s Department of Transportation is in shambles, according to an audit released today.

An audit from the 2016—2017 fiscal year found that the department couldn’t document its claims about the safety of the city’s bridges, nor could it document docking fees at city marinas or keep track of the ridership on the city’s circulator buses.

AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar

Lee Gedansky’s son turns 13 in December. Their family plans to celebrate with a bar mitzvah at Baltimore Hebrew Congregation.

A bar mitzvah often comes with months of preparation. But in addition to all the usual concerns, the shooting that killed 11 worshippers at a synagogue in Pittsburgh on Saturday has Gedansky worrying about safety measures.

John Lee

 

 

The first day of early voting brought out long lines of voters throughout Maryland Thursday. 

It also brought out the political big guns in Baltimore County, where a Democrat and Republican are locked in a tight race for County Executive.

 

Dominique Maria Bonessi

Baltimore City Council committee got a look Thursday at the audit that found the police department has little, if any, way to track or control overtime costs. The council members want Mayor Catherine Pugh and the department to move quickly to implement the recommendations in the report.

As Finance Director Henry Raymond briefed the council’s budget committee on the recommendations, Council President Jack Young got caught up in the wording of the first one:

Rachel Baye

As voters head to the polls starting Thursday for early voting, they will be asked to approve an amendment to the state constitution to allow citizens to register to vote on Election Day.

John Lee

In their final debate, the candidates for Baltimore County Executive differed over affordable housing, Pre-Kindergarten, and how to treat people who live in the country illegally. 

 

The final forum between Republican Al Redmer and Democrat Johnny Olszewski came two weeks before election day.

 

 

Fort Worth Police, Fort Worth, TX

Does Baltimore have a new police commissioner or not? Good question. It seemed like it Friday morning, but things kept shifting all day.

It started Thursday night when the Twitter account, @BmoreProjects, tweeted, "The mayor's pick for Baltimore's next police commissioner #JoelFitzgerald."

A local reporter in Dallas showed the tweet to Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price, and asked if Fitzgerald,the Fort Worth chief, was leaving for Baltimore.

Tradepoint Atlantic

 

Officials at Tradepoint Atlantic say a study of a proposed public financing deal with Baltimore County should be made public in the next couple of weeks. WYPR Morning Edition host Nathan Sterner discussed that with reporter John Lee.

 

 

An ad released this week by Gov. Larry Hogan’s campaign spends four minutes lauding the governor’s accomplishments on more than a dozen transportation projects.

Through a series of television news clips and video of press conferences, the ad describes how Hogan advanced efforts to widen I-270, the Capital Beltway, the Baltimore Beltway and the Baltimore-Washington Parkway; extended the I-95 North toll lanes; and lowered tolls — among other things.

John Lee / WYPR

The two candidates for Baltimore County Executive debated everything from education to circuses Thursday morning. 

 

John Lee

The kind of development that has led to overcrowded schools and monster traffic jams was a huge issue in the primary race for Baltimore County Executive. 

 

But with less than three weeks to go before the general election, neither candidate is making overdevelopment a major focus of his campaign.

 

 

Joel McCord

Andy Harris, the lone Republican in Maryland’s Congressional delegation, usually wins by wide margins in the reddest district in the state. But this year, Democrats seem to think they have a candidate who can beat him.

That’s Jesse Colvin, a political novice with an impressive resume that includes a master’s degree in International Affairs from Columbia University, a stint teaching English to Syrians who wanted to study in the U.S. and four tours of Afghanistan as an Army ranger.

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