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A Street Collapse In Baltimore’s Charles Village, Casino Hiring, & “Ghana At A Glance”

P. Kenneth Burns

Several cars tumbled onto CSX tracks in Baltimore’s Charles Village yesterday, after a landslide took out part of a city street… and sent cars, streetlights and debris onto the CSX rail tracks below. Plus: hiring for the Horseshoe Baltimore Casino, our “Ghana at a Glance” series, the controversy over Democratic gubernatorial debates, and more.

Street Collapse In Baltimore’s Charles Village: Several cars tumbled onto CSX tracks in Baltimore’s Charles Village yesterday, after a landslide took out part of a city street… and sent cars, streetlights and debris onto the CSX rail tracks below. Nineteen homes were evacuated. 26th Street is closed between Charles and St. Paul. No injuries have been reported but emergency management officials are telling people to stay away from the area, and nearby Margaret Brent Elementary-Middle schools is closed. Also closed in the city today is Empowerment Academy; that’s due to an electrical problem.

MARC Train Problems: Delays on the Camden Line this morning, and train cancelations on the Brunswick Line. The MTA has more here.

African-American Businessman Changes Lives in Ghana: American Don Felder visited Obodan, Ghana in 2001 and discovered that girls there were not graduating from high school – because there was no high school. He built a private all-girls boarding school the next year. Felder, a successful businessman, also gave some students scholarships to attend school. In this installment of the Ghana at a Glance series, WYPR’s Gwendolyn Glenn talks with one young woman whose life was drastically changed by Felder’s generosity and looks at some of his other charity work in the area.

Legendary Hiring Part 2: While the work continues on the Horseshoe Baltimore Casino on Russell Street, the city and Caesar’s Entertainment have been staging job fairs and mass hiring events to try to fill the casino’s 17-hundred available positions with city residents. WYPR’s Kenneth Burns reports that there are also workshops where there is an incentive at the end.

Media Partly To Blame For State's Large Number Of Undecided Voters: Maryland’s gubernatorial primary is less than two months away. But if “undecided” is still leading in the polls, WYPR’s Senior News Analyst Fraser Smith says – that’s no surprise. Fraser comments in his weekly essay.

Democratic Gubernatorial Debate Controversy: Baltimoreans will get a chance to see the first televised debate between Democratic gubernatorial hopefuls Anthony Brown, Doug Gansler, and Heather Mizeur; it’ll be carried by Maryland Public Television, and broadcast live at 7pm on May 7th. The Baltimore Sun’s David Zurawik addressed the issue on today’s Take on Television. Meanwhile, Gansler and Mizeur are calling on Brown to take part in a third televised debate; Brown says that his plans to take part in 2 TV debates and 1 radio-only debate meets an agreement that the three campaigns had made earlier this year. More on the controversy here from the Baltimore Sun and here from the Washington Post.

Baltimore Reaches Contract Deal With Police Union: Baltimore has reached a tentative contract deal with the city’s police union. The Baltimore Sun reports that the agreement would raise officers’ pay by 13 percent by the middle of next year, while eliminating vacant positions from the department. The three year deal would also see many more officers moved to patrol units, and put more on the streets. The work schedule is reportedly designed to allow commanders to assign resources when crime surges without running up overtime.

Minimum Wage Bill Blocked In US Senate: US Senator Ben Cardin is blasting Republicans in his chamber for blocking an effort to raise the minimum wage. In a statement, the Democrat said Americans "deserve a fair shot at making ends meet and supporting their families." Maryland lawmakers recently passed a measure gradually raising the state's minimum wage to $10.10 an hour by 2018.

Baltimore Baseball: The Orioles are scheduled to play a makeup doubleheader at Camden Yards today after a second straight game was rained out. The O's will host the Pittsburgh Pirates in game one at 4:05. The second game is slated to start at 7:05.

Washington Baseball: the Washington Nationals beat the Houston Astros yesterday; the score 7 to nothing.

WYPR's Morning Edition news anchor Ashley Sterner serves up the latest Maryland news and weather every weekday morning, delightfully interspersed with the occasional snarky comment.