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John Lee

The number of students participating in a program that offers free tuition at the Community College of Baltimore County has nearly tripled this year. 

 

School officials hope even more students will get the College Promise scholarship, which is beginning its second year this month.

AP/Patrick Semansky

  City and state officials convened in Baltimore on Tuesday to discuss ways to prevent and treat childhood trauma, which affects more than half of the city’s children.

For the last week, the major question raging through African American barbershops, backyard barbecues and other places where black men gather had nothing to do with a possible impending recession or where to buy good property on Greenland.

No, the burning debate centers on whether one Shawn Corey Carter has left Colin Kaepernick hanging high and dry with his new deal with the NFL.

John Lee

The joke in Towson is that its town bird is the construction crane. More than a half dozen of them are part of the skyline, as Towson transforms into what one developer said will rival College Park as Maryland’s best college town. 

 

There is excitement about what Towson is becoming, as well as concern about what all of those changes will mean for Baltimore County’s county seat.

 

 

Emily Sullivan/WYPR

 

The city has put a busy business corridor in northeast Baltimore on a “road diet” — reducing the number of lanes for cars and installing floating bus stops and bike lanes. The goal is to make the stretch of Harford Road between Echodale and White Avenues safer not just for pedestrians, bus riders and bikers, but also for cars.

According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, road diets like this one can reduce crashes by an average of 29 percent.

After the season the Orioles have had and the week they endured last week, Sunday afternoon’s home plate celebration following Rio Ruiz’s ninth inning home run to beat Houston must have been as cathartic as it was joyful.

Goodness knows the Birds needed something to rejoice in after getting pounded for three games by the Yankees and narrowly dropping a 23-2 decision to the Astros Saturday night in a game where Carlos Correia hit the longest measured home run in Camden Yards history.

Paul Sakuma/AP

 

Legislators in Baltimore have tried and failed to ban or highly reduce plastic bag use eight times in the last decade. A plastic bag ban bill appeared on the City Council’s docket for the ninth time this summer, and because of a progressive council it could finally pass, according to Councilman Bill Henry, the bill’s lead sponsor.

John Lee

 

Counties usually stay out of each other’s business, but the Baltimore County Council voted unanimously on Monday night to oppose a Harford County megachurch’s plans to build a wastewater treatment plant.

 

 

Pamela D'Angelo / wypr

For the last three years, a herd of wild ponies that live at Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge, have been under attack by a deadly microorganism usually found in tropical and subtropical climates. So far, eight female ponies have died. 

Rachel Baye

U.S. District Court Judge Catherine Blake heard arguments Thursday in a case challenging an executive order Gov. Larry Hogan signed in 2017 that requires state contractors to sign an affidavit certifying that they do not and will not boycott Israel.

John Lee

 

At the Guinness brewery, beer is on the move.

 

Kegs of beer are kept in cold storage, below the bar and its 92 taps. The bartender pulls a tap, and the beer is pumped from the keg through tubing to the tap, then to the glass.

 

 

Several Chincoteague Ponies Dead From 'Swamp Cancer'

Aug 1, 2019
Pam D'Angelo / 88.1 wypr

A mysterious microorganism that was once only found in tropical and subtropical regions is living in fresh water ponds at Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge, which sits within the Assateague Island National Seashore.

Howard County Library System via flickr

President Donald Trump’s tweets over the weekend calling Democratic Rep. Elijah Cummings’ district a “rat and rodent infested disaster,” have sparked a conversation about poverty and the policies that have failed to alleviate it.

The district, which includes most of Baltimore, is majority black and heavily Democratic, voting overwhelmingly for Hillary Clinton in 2016. According to the Census Bureau, nearly 17 percent of residents have incomes below the poverty level, about 5 percentage points higher than the national average.

"Instead of bad-mouthing Baltimore, and instead of engaging in these racist diatribes, the president could help us with the challenges we face in the city," said Sen. Chris Van Hollen, a Maryland Democrat.

Baltimore City Hall

Baltimore City Council President Brandon Scott is pitching a wide-ranging plan designed to change the shape of city government. The proposal lays out a roadmap full of policy changes the council and other government officials can take to “deliver for Baltimore’s residents and bring greater transparency to the way we operate,” Scott said Wednesday.

Patrick Semansky/AP

According to the president of the United States, the city of Baltimore is a "disgusting, rat and rodent infested mess,” a place that “no human being would want to live.” 

Mary Rose Madden / wypr

 


John Lee

Can You REALLY Be Seen at the MVA in 15 Minutes or Less To Verify Your Real ID? 

 

As the clock starts ticking, WYPR reporter John Lee takes up the challenge. 

 

 

AP/Patrick Semansky

Bryonna Harris, Jaionna Santos and Damani Thomas were eating lunch at Frederick Douglass High School when a hall monitor was shot.

 

The students, who are now rising seniors at the West Baltimore school, later testified at City Hall about the February incident, as well as about the trauma they have experienced both inside and outside their homes in their short lives. 

John Lee

Mountain Christian Church has four locations in Harford County. Church leaders estimate that on any given Sunday, about 6,000 people attend services, half of them at the main location in Joppa.

 

 

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.

 

 

Emily Sullivan/WYPR

Baltimore Police Commissioner Michael Harrison released his new sweeping crime reduction plan Thursday that calls for improved response time and distributing more patrol officers in high-crime “micro zones” and includes visions for reforming community-police relationships.

AP/Keith Srakocic

 

Baltimore residents haven’t received a water bill since early May — and that will remain the case until at least early August, Mayor Jack Young said Wednesday. 

Emily Sullivan/WYPR

Two men were killed during a shooting inside a Charles North substance abuse clinic Monday morning, including the suspected shooter. Two others, including a Baltimore Police officer, were injured.

City police said they received a call at 7:09 a.m. from the Man Alive treatment center in the 2100 block of Maryland Ave. 

John Lee

Mountain Christian Church is in Harford County. But it is just over the line from Baltimore County, where officials say they were not properly notified about the church’s plan to build a wastewater treatment plant. The discharge from that plant would make its way into Baltimore County via the Gunpowder River.

 

There is a public hearing on that proposal Tuesday night in Perry Hall. It's being held by the Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE.) WYPR’s John Lee joined Morning Edition host Nathan Sterner in the studio to talk about it.

 

 

Karl Merton Ferron/The Baltimore Sun

Baltimore is one of 10 cities where President Donald Trump announced Immigration and Customs Enforcement — known as ICE — would conduct targeted deportation raids beginning Sunday.

The threat of those raids has made some members of local immigrant communities afraid to leave their homes.

Emily Sullivan/WYPR

When violent unrest spread through Baltimore’s streets after the 2015 death in police custody of Freddie Gray, the Orioles did something unprecedented. For the first time in Major League Baseball history, the team played in an empty stadium, citing safety concerns.

The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra chose to send a different message. Its musicians stepped outside of the Meyerhoff Symphony Hall and into the streets to play a free outdoor concert.

For the last few weeks, those same musicians are back on the same stretch of Cathedral Street. This time, they’re walking a picket line, after management abruptly cancelled all summer concerts and locked the musicians out with no pay.   

John Lee

At the Maryland Marina on Frogmortar Creek in Middle River, workers were recently moving a lift into place to pull a boat out of the water.

 

“These guys would not be working here if there wasn’t a waterfront,” said Robert Palmer with the Marine Trades Association of Baltimore County.

 

 

John Lee

Quick: can you think of three tourist attractions in Baltimore County? 

If not, county officials say it’s because they’ve not done enough to tell you about them. 

 

The county commissioned a study that lays out how it has fallen short on capitalizing on a multi-billion dollar industry, and what it can do about it. 

There’s nothing about what we’ve seen so far this season from Camden Yards that should come as a surprise.

Anyone who watched the 2018 Orioles devolve into the team that lost a franchise record 115 games could not have imagined a significantly better 2019.

Once Manny Machado, Jonathan Schoop, Zach Britton, Kevin Gausman and Darren O’Day were dealt at roughly around this time last year, Orioles management effectively hung out the “Gone Fishin” sign for the foreseeable future.

Wikipedia

As the nation celebrates its freedom on the Fourth of July, we look back at black soldiers who fought on both sides in the Revolutionary War.

The British promised slaves freedom if they joined their side, while the Continental Army had no such policy. Still, many slaves fought on George Washington’s side, probably hoping for their freedom. Historians and descendants of enslaved people say they played a major role in the war.

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