Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski | WYPR

Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski

John Lee

There have been at least 30 cases in Baltimore County over the past 10 days of people violating social distancing rules as authorities try to slow the spread of the coronavirus.

Statewide it is illegal for more than 10 people to gather together.

John Lee

Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski said President Trump could be putting lives at risk by saying he wants the country opened by Easter.

The president Tuesday said the U.S. economy is in jeopardy. During a Fox News town hall, the president said, “The faster we go back, the better it’s going to be.”

Lee Krempel

Maryland’s public schools will be closed for two weeks starting Monday March 16th through Friday March 27th  due to the growing number of cases of the novel coronavirus, COVID-19, in the state.

State Superintendent Karen Salmon announced the closings in an afternoon news conference Thursday.

AP

State health officials have confirmed Maryland’s first cases of the coronavirus disease COVID-19 affecting three residents of Montgomery County. 

The three were infected during an international cruise. Officials have not specified where that was, citing privacy reasons. But Dr. Travis Gayles, the chief health officer for Montgomery County, said in a news conference Friday the cruise was “not affiliated with Baltimore.”

John Lee

People who live in Turner Station, a historically African American community in southeastern Baltimore County, say they just don’t trust the police department. That comes from years of seeing black people treated unfairly by the police.

But at the same time, they also say they need help with a growing crime problem.

Mia Jeffries told a recent community meeting in Dundalk she and her daughter were pulled over for speeding one night, and that led to her being tased, her daughter being pepper sprayed and both of them being locked up.

Rachel Baye

State lawmakers began work Monday on a highly anticipated package of sweeping education reforms that reflects recommendations by the Kirwan Commission. Hundreds of teachers, activists and local government officials came to Annapolis to testify or show their support for the bill.

John Lee

 

This week, Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski will begin holding town hall meetings on the budget for this coming year.

Last year, the county raised taxes for the first time in a generation to close an $81 million shortfall. But officials say that does not mean the county is out of the fiscal woods yet, and tough decisions lie ahead.

WYPR’s John Lee joined Morning Edition host Nathan Sterner in the studio to talk about what is at stake.

Rachel Baye


  In his annual State of the State address Wednesday, Gov. Larry Hogan urged the members of the General Assembly to address Baltimore’s soaring crime rates, calling them an “urgent crisis.” 

John Lee

Joe Lowe recently was having a beer in a bar in Bowleys Quarters in Middle River. Bowleys Quarters is prone to flooding, most infamously in 2003 when Tropical Storm Isabel destroyed more than 200 homes.

But Lowe does not believe climate change is a threat.

John Lee

Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski raised nearly $1 million in political contributions in 2019, his first year in office. That is five times what his predecessor, Kevin Kamenetz, raised during the first year of his first term in 2011.

Baltimore County

Gun shop owners in Baltimore County will have to make their stores more secure under controversial legislation passed Tuesday night by the county council. WYPR’s  Baltimore County reporter John Lee joined Morning Edition Host Nathan Sterner to give the details.

Baltimore County

  

The Baltimore County Council Tuesday night is expected to approve the hiring of the county’s first executive director for ethics and accountability.

 

 

Baltimore County Government/flickr

The number of murders in Baltimore County nearly doubled in 2019 when compared to the year before.

 

50 people were murdered last year according to a police department spokesman. That compares to 27 people killed in 2018 and 35 people murdered in 2016 and 2017. 

 

Baltimore County

Baltimore County has gotten the green light from the federal government to require most landlords to accept housing vouchers, also called section 8.

 

According to Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski, the controversial legislation passed by the county council last month has been approved by The Department of Housing and Urban Development.

 

 

Baltimore County

Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski announced Thursday that he is nominating Kelly Madigan, a career prosecutor, for the job of rooting out corruption, fraud and abuse in county government. 

 

Madigan will be the first leader of the county’s newly created office of ethics and accountability.

 

 

Lauren Watley, Baltimore County Government

Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski begins his second year in office this week. 

 

Challenges ahead for Olszewski in 2020 include getting state money for the county’s old, crowded schools and dealing with a rising crime rate. 

 

 

John Lee

Baltimore County will prohibit landlords from rejecting would-be tenants because they use housing vouchers, also known as section 8. 

 

The Baltimore County Council approved the controversial legislation Monday night in a vote that went straight down party lines.The four Democrats on the county council voted for it. The three Republicans voted against. 

 

 

John Lee

It was standing room only in the Baltimore County Council Chambers Tuesday afternoon, as the council heard from both sides of the controversial issue of housing vouchers. 

 

Meantime, the odds may be improving that the legislation will pass the county council when it comes up for a vote next week.

 

 

Lauren Watley, Baltimore County Government

Housing vouchers, also known as section 8: are they a helping hand for people in need or do they threaten neighborhoods? 

 

The Baltimore County Council has scheduled a public hearing Tuesday afternoon on legislation that would forbid landlords from rejecting would-be tenants because they use the vouchers. 

 

Thousands of people in Baltimore County find themselves on opposite sides of the controversy.

 

 

Baltimore County Government

 

The fate of a controversial proposal to ban landlords in Baltimore County from rejecting someone because they are using a housing voucher, commonly called section 8, rests with two members of the Baltimore County Council.

 

WYPR’s John Lee joined Morning Edition host Nathan Sterner in the studio to talk about the two council members whose votes are in play and the political tug of war over this legislation. 

 

 

John Lee

 

 

Controversial legislation that would ban landlords in Baltimore County from rejecting someone because they are using a housing voucher, commonly called section 8, is to be introduced next week at the County Council. 

 

The so-called “source of income discrimination legislation” was soundly defeated when it last went before the council three years ago.

 

 

AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza

 

 

Baltimore County is looking to raise the legal age to buy cigarettes or any other tobacco product from 18 to 21.

 

Legislation being proposed by County Executive Johnny Olszewski also would ban the sale of e-cigarette devices to anyone in Baltimore County under the age of 21.

 

 

John Lee

Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski said Thursday he has found seed money for two new high schools for Towson and Dulaney. 

 

Even with that, there are no guarantees those schools will be built for years.

Graphic courtesy BSO

Despite the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra’s financial straits, Baltimore County is reducing the amount of money it usually gives to the orchestra. 

 

Nevertheless, County Executive Johnny Olszewski said the BSO still has the county’s full support.

 

 

John Lee

  

Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski’s first budget takes effect Monday and it includes the first tax increases in the county in a generation. 

 

However, residents won’t feel some of the tax hikes right away.

 

 

John Lee

The murder rate in Eastern Baltimore County is climbing. 

 

And people who live there say crime in general is getting worse in their community. 

 

They gave Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski and his new police chief, Melissa Hyatt, an earful about it a public hearing on policing Monday on the executive’s home turf in Dundalk, at the Community College of Baltimore County’s campus there.

 

 

Baltimore County Government

Baltimore Mayor Jack Young and Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski recently got together over a table of steamed crabs to look for ways the city and county can work together. The two leaders are expected to make announcements soon on issues ranging from public safety to transportation.

 

 

Baltimore County Government

 

 

Now that taxes are going up in Baltimore County, the pressure is on County Executive Johnny Olszewski to show people they are getting their money’s worth. 

 

That’s on Olszewski’s agenda, as well as presenting controversial affordable housing voucher legislation to the County Council.

Baltimore County

The nominee to be Baltimore County’s next police chief served more than 20 years in the Baltimore Police Department. And it was Melissa Hyatt’s time in a police force rife with corruption that got the most attention from the county council, as it quizzed her Tuesday afternoon about becoming the county’s top cop. 

 

 

Lauren Watley, Baltimore County Government

“Excruciating,” “trying,” “the most difficult in recent memory” — that’s how Baltimore County Council members described the process of finalizing the $3.43 billion budget they passed Thursday morning.

The budget for the next fiscal year included the first income tax hike in more than a generation and other tax increases in an attempt to close an $81 million county deficit.

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