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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.

John Lee

Monday was Darryl Williams’ first day on the job as Baltimore County’s new school superintendent. And right out of the starting gate, he heard from students about problems with bullying and dilapidated schools. 

 

 

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.

 

 

Joel McCord

On the one-year anniversary of the shootings in the Annapolis Capital newsroom, the city of Annapolis dedicated a memorial garden to the five victims in a quiet waterfront park, off the beaten path and away from the chaos of the City Dock.

There were five rosebushes, one each for Gerald Fischman, the editorial writer; Rebecca Smith, an advertising associate; assistant editor Rob Hiaasen; Wendi Winters, a feature writer, and reporter John McNamara, and a plaque with their names.

Mary Rose Madden / wypr

Baltimore’s police department was already notorious (see the 2016 DOJ report).   

But in 2018, eight former police officers were convicted on federal racketeering charges stemming from an FBI investigation. They belonged to an elite task force charged with getting guns off the city’s streets. Instead, the plainclothes cops roamed Baltimore neighborhoods at will, robbing people, breaking into homes to steal money, drugs or guns and planting evidence on their victims.   

Emily Sullivan/WYPR

The worst attack on journalists in U.S. history was one year ago today -- when a man entered the offices of the Capital Gazette and killed five people with a shotgun. The journalists who survived say that dealing with their trauma and grief has not been a linear process. They also cite remaining sources of comfort -- like their connection with each other and ongoing community support.

 

WYPR’s Emily Sullivan talked to four journalists from the paper about the shooting’s first anniversary. Here is what they said.

Supreme Court Allows Maryland's Congressional Map

Jun 27, 2019
AP/J. Scott Applewhite

The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that Congressional redistricting maps—including Maryland’s—are none of their business, regardless of partisan gerrymandering complaints.

In a 5-4 decision issued Thursday, the last day of the court’s term before a summer break, Chief Justice John Roberts wrote that the justices have no role to play in what they saw as a political argument that the states should resolve on their own.

Joel McCord

Two days before the first anniversary of the murders in the Annapolis Capital newsroom, federal lawmakers have introduced legislation to authorize a memorial to fallen journalists in the nation’s capital.

The bill, sponsored by Senators Ben Cardin, a Maryland Democrat, and Rob Portman, an Ohio Republican, would allow the privately funded memorial on federal land in the District of Columbia.

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.

 

 

Emily Sullivan/WYPR

Last fall, Baltimore voters approved a public financing fund for elections throughout the city. Now, the City Council is considering a bill that spells out the rules and regulations for that fund.

John Lee

Baltimore County’s next school superintendent is promising a plan of action as he takes over the system July 1st. Darryl Williams was introduced to the public at a special school board meeting Tuesday night. 

 

It was also revealed what the next year will hold for outgoing interim superintendent Verletta White.

 

 

Official photograph

Those plastic bags you get at your local supermarket, or just about anywhere you shop in Baltimore City, could be a thing of the past under a measure City Councilman Bill Henry plans to introduce at Monday’s council meeting.

The bill would ban plastic bags altogether and place a surcharge of five cents on other bags — like paper or compostable bags —at the point of sale or during pick up or delivery. 

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 Public Schools

The Baltimore County School Board has made changes to how it disciplines students. This comes after attorneys who have been monitoring the school system said it was breaking state law.

 

 

Governor Larry Hogan named 11 new members Wednesday to the scandal plagued board of directors of the University of Maryland Medical System.

The announcement came the same day as the UMMS Board elected a new chair and vice chair and released a consultant’s report that found hospital management made business deals with individual board members without informing the rest of the board or an appropriate board committee.

Emily Sullivan/WYPR

The Baltimore City Board of Estimates has approved a $25.9 million contract with the ongoing Charm City Circulator operators to continue overseeing the free bus service for the next three years.

Errands Plus, Inc., which operates the service as RMA Worldwide Services Chauffeured Transportation, took over operations in October of last year after Baltimore sued the former operator, Transdev Services, for allegedly overcharging the city tens of millions of dollars.

Photo courtesy BCPS

The Baltimore County School Board Tuesday night decided again that classes will start after Labor Day this coming school year, and it heard a farewell address from interim school superintendent Verletta White. WYPR’s John Lee was there and talked it over with Morning Edition host Nathan Sterner.

 

 

Mary Rose Madden

It’s been 48 hours since Darryll Burrell called an intake counselor and got his childhood friend, Al Jackson, a spot in the drug treatment program Powell Recovery in Fells Point.

But first, Al wants to get his prescription for suboxone - one of the three FDA approved medications that can help block the craving for heroin, filled. 

So, for now, Burrell can only sit and wait and worry. He's in his parked car, outside Maryland General Hospital anticpating Al's phone call.

Emily Sullivan

Danielle McCray was sworn in as the 2nd district city council member by Mayor Jack Young in a ceremony Tuesday afternoon, capping the end of a series of office transitions that began after former mayor Catherine Pugh’s resignation.

McCray served as an aide to City Council President Brandon Scott when he represented the Northeast Baltimore district. She spent five years handling constituent and policy issues.

Mary Rose Madden

Al Jackson has been addicted to heroin since he was a young teenager, growing up in South Baltimore. 

These days, he says, it's hard to find heroin that's doesn't have the extremely deadly and cheap opioid, fentanyl mixed in.

And so, at the age of 56, he's desperate to kick his opioid addiction before it takes him under. 

Luckily for him, medicaid patients have more treatment options available. But, the clock is ticking like never before with fentanyl on the streets. 

Emily Sullivan/WYPR

A new community garden for veterans experiencing homelessness or addiction and Sandtown-Winchester community members opened last week.

The garden spans three formerly vacant lots in the 1600 block of Baker Street. Now, there’s a circle of rocks for group therapy sessions, flowers, trees, and a paved, sloping sidewalk already loved by neighborhood kids on bikes and scooters.

It's Golf Week in Baltimore

Jun 6, 2019
Tom Flynn

It was former Mayor William Donald Schaefer, a well-known city promoter, who created the Baltimore Municipal Golf Corporation, a non-profit to run the city’s five golf courses, back in 1984. And it was Tom Pierce, the corporation’s marketing director, who came up with the idea of a “golf week” just last year.

“Golf week is exciting,” he said. “One of the main parts is that people can have a chance to win $1 million, or $50,000. But it’s mainly a fundraiser for YouthWorks.”

Emily Sullivan

About a third of Baltimore city employees have regained email access as officials continue their work to restore digital services after the May 7 cyberattack that crippled the city’s computer system.

Around 90 percent of employees are expected to regain online access by the end of this week, and the city has developed two new workarounds to pay traffic tickets and water bills, city officials said during a news conference Tuesday.

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.

@S_Dallas_Dance/Twitter

Dallas Dance resigned in disgrace as Baltimore County’s school superintendent two years ago. But his legacy has remained front and center. In his wake, a fractured school board battled over finding his permanent replacement, and whether the staff Dance left behind could be trusted. 

 

In an interview with WYPR, Dance said he has moved on, but has learned from the mistakes he made.

 

 

Lexington Market Due for an Overhaul

May 30, 2019
Tom Flynn

Baltimore’s Lexington Market has been around since before George Washington took office as the first President. And it remains one of the oldest continuously operating public markets in the world.

But it has fallen on hard times and the city is about to launch a $40 million redevelopment project that would make Lexington Street a pedestrian mall and put a new market building on what is now a parking lot.

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. 

 

 

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