Around The Region

February 04, 2010

Charles St. ramp to Beltway closing


The State Highway Administration will close the ramp from southbound Charles Street to eastbound Interstate 695 beginning tonight as part of the replacement of a bridge over the Beltway. As of Friday morning, motorists approaching the Beltway from Lutherville will be diverted to York Road until fall. The ramp from northbound Charles Street to the eastbound Beltway will remain open. On Friday, motorists approaching the Charles Street interchange from Lutherville will be directed to a detour using Bellona Avenue and the York Road interchange. The schedule is contingent on the weather. According to the SHA, the temporary ramp closure is part of Phase 2 of construction of the new Charles Street bridge over I-695. The project is expected to be completed in spring 2012. The work zone is one of three in the state being monitored with speed cameras.

- Michael Dresser

Lawmakers reject ban on recognizing same-sex unions

Maryland lawmakers on Wednesday rejected an effort to prohibit the state from recognizing same-sex marriages lawfully performed elsewhere. Del. Emmett C. Burns, a Baltimore County Democrat and minister, had proposed that the state, which does not allow same-sex unions, pass a law explicitly declaring such marriages illegal, even when performed in another state. The Burns proposal was seen as a pre-emptive strike against a legal opinion that state Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler has been working on since a senator requested it last year. Top lawmakers have predicted that Gansler will allow same-sex marriages to be recognized in Maryland, following the state's legal tradition of recognizing unions, including common-law marriages, that are illegal in Maryland but lawful elsewhere.

- Julie Bykowicz

Judge dismisses lawsuit seeking to oust sorority head

WASHINGTON - A judge dismissed a lawsuit Monday by members of the nation's oldest black sorority, who sought to remove their president over alleged financial misdeeds. D.C. Superior Court Judge Natalia M. Combs Greene dismissed the lawsuit, filed by eight sorority sisters in June, against Alpha Kappa Alpha. The sisters had wanted to remove the Chicago-based group's leader, Barbara McKinzie, because they claimed she had spent hundreds of thousands of dollars in AKA money on herself, some of it to pay for a wax statue of herself at the Great Blacks in Wax Museum in Baltimore. In her ruling, Combs Greene criticized the plaintiffs for making "hyperbolic allegations riddled with buzz words."

- Associated Press

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