BALTIMORE CITY — Council backs anti-nuclear bills
The City Council last night approved a series of measures making Baltimore a nuclear-free zone, which would more closely regulate the transportation of nuclear materials and ban the disposal of radioactive waste within the city's boundaries.
The measures, which supporters said enjoy the backing of Mayor Kurt L. Schmoke, also prohibit the production of nuclear weapons or their components in the city and discourage the city from purchasing goods and services produced by nuclear weapons makers.
The package of bills was pushed by the Nuclear Free Baltimore Committee, which was supported by a broad array of individuals and groups, including former Democratic Rep. Parren J. Mitchell, the Maryland Waste Coalition and Citizens for Fair Housing.
In passing the measures introduced by Council President Mary Pat Clarke, Baltimore joins the nuclear-free zones of Takoma Park, Garrett Park, Sykesville and Wilde Lake in Maryland, and the cities of Chicago; Oakland, Calif.; and Jersey City, N.J.
Food drive a big hit:
Postal Service letter carriers collected nearly 620,000 pounds of food for the needy during last month's "Harvest for the Hungry" campaign, and post offices throughout Maryland and most of Delaware still are taking donations.
The campaign Feb. 10-14, when letter carriers collected canned food and other non-perishable goods at the same time they delivered the mail, far exceeded expectations, said Patricia M. Liberto, who chairs the "Harvest for the Hungry" campaign for the Baltimore area's Federal Executive Board.
Organizers had expected about 225,000 pounds of food, she said. The goods were distributed to food banks throughout the two states.
People who still want to contribute canned or dried goods can take them to any post office or postal station in Maryland and Delaware through March 31, Ms. Liberto said.
Girl Scout honored:
Anne Arundel County
To Kelly Brooks, a 13-year-old Girl Scout, the little boy she saved from drowning last Memorial Day is a nameless child who got yelled at by his mother for venturing out too far in the Potomac River in Allegany County.
There has been no acknowledgment from the boy's parents. To this day, she doesn't even know the name of the 4-year-old she pulled from the water.
"The current probably would have taken him away," said Kelly, who lives in the Hallmark Woods community near Crofton.
But Kelly was recognized. Last night, the eight-year scout veteran, member of Pack 1101 and an eighth-grader at Crofton Middle School, received a Medal of Honor Lifesaving Award from the Girl Scouts of the U.S.A.
Funds set for housing:
The Associated: Jewish Community Federation of Baltimore has lined up more than $8 million to build a housing complex in Pikesville for the low- and moderate-income elderly.
Most of the funding for the 116-apartment Weinberg House will come from a $7 million grant approved Friday by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Baltimore County will contribute $525,000 in federal community development block grant funds. The Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation, a private philanthropic organization, will donate $500,000 for the project.
The housing complex will be built at the intersection of Towne Centre Place and Old Court Road.
More rain needed:
Although Carroll County residents have waded through much mist and rain during the past few weeks, more precipitation is needed to prevent a drought this summer, weather observers say.
"It really didn't rain that much -- it was only about an inch," said Larry Myers, a local weather observer who measures rain fall at his home north of Westminster. "If you count last year and this year, we're probably 10 inches below normal, and that's a lot."
Rainfall in February was 1.95 inches, compared with the average of 3 inches.
Dead youth identified:
The youth struck and killed by a train while crossing the CSX railroad tracks in Edgewood early yesterday has been identified by police as Scott Andrew Marek, a ninth-grader at Joppatowne High School.
The 15-year-old lived in the 700 block of Clover Valley Court, Edgewood. He was the last of four youths crossing the tracks just west of Md. 755 at 5:55 a.m. when he was struck by a westbound, 52-car train traveling at about 50 mph, state police said.
Sexual harassment alleged:
A female garbage truck driver has filed a second sexual-harassment complaint against her former employer.
Dawn Munday, 33, of Glen Burnie, quit her job at Waste Management Inc.'s Elkridge operation in August and filed a $13 million lawsuit in Howard County Circuit Court last month. She was the Elkridge office's only female driver.
Last spring, Ms. Munday and the company had settled a complaint she filed with the Howard County Human Rights Commission.
She returned to her job in July but left a month later, saying that she received unequal pay and benefits and was harassed by two company officials.
Kenneth Murdock, human resource manager for the Northeast region at Waste Management, last week denied the charges.