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NEWS
September 3, 2012
The stereotype of the lazy, irresponsible "deadbeat dad" who won't cough up the cash for Pampers and formula has been a fixture in the debate over why states have such a hard time collecting delinquent child-support payments from absent fathers. Every few years, lawmakers decide to get tough on the alleged miscreants by stiffening the penalties for missing a support payment, revoking their professional licenses or certifications and even, in some cases, throwing them in jail. Then they sit back and wonder why, despite the righteousness of the cause, nothing much seems to change.
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NEWS
James O'Conor Gentry Jr | September 2, 2014
As one of two former prosecutors in the 1995 murder trial of then-police Sgt. James Kulbicki (" Ex-Baltimore Police sergeant granted new trial in murder of mistress," Aug. 27), I was outraged and incredulous to learn that the Court of Appeals of Maryland has, for the second time, reversed the conviction of a man who was tied by overwhelming evidence to the senseless and brutal execution of an innocent, young woman more than 19 years ago. Two juries have already found that on January 9, 1993, Gina Nueslein, just 22 years old at the time, was shot in the head by Sgt. Kulbicki for daring to ask him to provide child support for their 18-month old son. Evidence showed the police veteran abducted Nueslein and, as she sat in his pick-up truck, placed the barrel of his gun against her head and pulled the trigger.
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NEWS
By Julie Bykowicz | julie.bykowicz@baltsun.com | March 27, 2010
A plan to revise the formulas that courts use to set child support amounts has cleared a key House of Delegates committee. Similar changes, which would mean higher payments for many noncustodial parents, have been approved by the Senate. The Maryland General Assembly has taken action on child support guidelines for the first time in two decades. The guidelines are used when divorcing or married parents cannot agree upon an amount. The state Department of Human Resources administers about 250,000 cases of child support, and its leader, Secretary Brenda Donald, has been advocating for new guidelines.
NEWS
July 18, 2014
The photos of the immigrants pouring across the border certainly tug at our heartstrings. We've heard stories of the desire of these immigrants to escape threatening conditions, obtain desperately needed medical attention and seek a better life. The exhausted look of the women and frightened faces of the children speak volumes. Also filling the news lately have been stories about the government's unfairness to women in allowing employers to exempt themselves from paying for certain contraceptives if this runs against their religious beliefs.
NEWS
March 14, 2010
Fortunately I've never been divorced, so I've avoided the pitfalls of Maryland's child support system. Unfortunately, I know other's who haven't. Based on the Sun's model ("A matter of fairness," March 12), I see many problems with how the system is structured. The Sun assumes in it's model a gross family income of $89,000. Subtract from that income state and local income taxes, Social Security and Medicare, and the number drops considerably. Take the new number, and subtract from that the spending that the custodial parent would have whether or not he or she had children: a mortgage, telephone, cable, gas and electric, automobile, food, insurance and clothing.
NEWS
March 16, 2010
Your view for increasing the child support guidelines ("A matter of fairness," Feb. 12) shows your lack of understanding of the real world and how families live. They have very little extra money to pay because of the financial decisions they made while living together. You also have failed to consider the windfall that one person receives when they remarry or live with another person. The housing, food, auto and other expenses are being shared by the new spouse while the old spouse lives in a one bedroom apartment eating hot dogs.
NEWS
By Julie Bykowicz | julie.bykowicz@baltsun.com | March 22, 2010
Some child support payments in Maryland could soon go up - a change that state Human Resources Secretary Brenda Donald called "long overdue." For the first time in two decades, lawmakers are poised to revise the guidelines that courts use to set child support when divorcing or unmarried parents cannot agree on an amount. Those guidelines are based on household expense data from the 1970s, and although they accommodate rising incomes, advocates say they don't account for the escalating costs of raising a child.
NEWS
By Yvonne Wenger, The Baltimore Sun | August 29, 2012
Curious billboards have popped up around Baltimore recently: "Hiring again? Share the good news. " The nine billboards — posted in prominent locations such as the intersection of Falls Road and West Cold Spring Lane— do not give any clues as to their real agenda. The ads simply direct employers to a website, which explains that to improve child support collections a state law requires them to report new workers within 20 days of their hiring or face a fine. The giant displays are among the aggressive tactics the state Department of Human Resources is deploying after a blistering audit last year found that the agency failed to use all available resources to collect the payments, most often on behalf of mothers.
NEWS
By Yvonne Wenger, The Baltimore Sun | January 23, 2013
The state this month will begin sending all child support payments electronically, a move that the Maryland Department of Human Resources said Wednesday will save $1.4 million. The Child Support Enforcement Administration says eliminating the paper check option in favor of direct deposit and a new Electronic Payment Issuance Card for custodial parents will be easier, faster and safer for families. The state will save on the cost of printing and mailing checks. "Families shouldn't have to wait for a check to arrive by mail to receive child support payments we collect on their behalf," Maryland Department of Human Resources Secretary Ted Dallas said in a statement.
NEWS
By Eileen Ambrose, The Baltimore Sun | May 8, 2011
Twenty-two parents owing nearly $328,000 in back child support were arrested late last week during the fifth annual raid by the Baltimore City Sheriff's Office, officials said. The child support sweep is typically held the week before Mother's Day. This year, 17 deputy sheriffs took part in the two-day raid that started at 4:00 a.m. on Thursday and Friday. While most of the offenders were men, five women were taken into custody, the highest number since the sweeps began, Captain Sam Cogen said Sunday.
NEWS
By Joe Jones | April 21, 2013
From Bangor to Peoria, in the Huffington Post and in Forbes Magazine, the press is focusing on the minimum wage. While we hear and read about it constantly these days, many of us never take the time to reflect on what it really means. When seen up close, as I do every day here in Baltimore at the Center for Urban Families, the real meaning of "minimum" becomes painfully apparent. Minimum is just that. As Merriam Webster says: "the least quantity assignable, admissible, or possible.
NEWS
March 28, 2013
Here's a sad but true story. It starts with a young couple living in North Carolina, married two years, wife pregnant, husband in the Army Reserves. He's deployed to Afghanistan for a year, and she moves to Maryland to live with her parents and newborn daughter. One year later, a week before the child's father comes home from Afghanistan, the wife texts her husband to say she's divorcing him - she claimed abandonment, even though they had kept in touch weekly - and then takes two thirds of the money they had saved.
NEWS
By Yvonne Wenger, The Baltimore Sun | January 23, 2013
The state this month will begin sending all child support payments electronically, a move that the Maryland Department of Human Resources said Wednesday will save $1.4 million. The Child Support Enforcement Administration says eliminating the paper check option in favor of direct deposit and a new Electronic Payment Issuance Card for custodial parents will be easier, faster and safer for families. The state will save on the cost of printing and mailing checks. "Families shouldn't have to wait for a check to arrive by mail to receive child support payments we collect on their behalf," Maryland Department of Human Resources Secretary Ted Dallas said in a statement.
NEWS
By Andrea F. Siegel, The Baltimore Sun | November 26, 2012
Noel Tshiani wasn't at his wedding — he listened by phone in another country to the ceremony in the Democratic Republic of Congo, according to court records — but he's just as married as if he'd stood at his bride's side. And soon, he'll be just as divorced and responsible for alimony and child support, a Maryland court has ruled. A World Bank employee, Tshiani was working in another African country when he and Marie-Louise Tshiani married in a 1993 ceremony. He answered questions and listened to the ceremony by telephone, while his cousin stood in his place for the ceremony, court records say. The exchange among families included money, clothes and a goat, and within days, the bride flew to join her husband, according to court records.
NEWS
By Yvonne Wenger, The Baltimore Sun | November 14, 2012
The state contractor that collects child support payments in Baltimore continues to have trouble meeting the terms of its agreement, according to a report released Wednesday by the Office of Legislative Audits calling for better oversight by the Department of Human Resources. In a follow-up review after blasting the agency last year for not doing enough to collect payments, the auditors said the state had completed or begun to address nearly all issues, but noted that the department had made only "minimal progress" addressing contracting issues in Baltimore.
NEWS
October 24, 2012
David L. Warnock, chairman of the Center for Urban Families, bemoans the fact that dads released from jail accrue thousands of dollars' worth of child-support debt and have no way ever to get square, having earned no income while incarcerated and having a bleak chance of being gainfully employed in the future ("Hurting dads, hurting kids," Oct. 21). Meanwhile, their children don't have the child support that has been awarded and live in poverty. He urges expansion and strengthening new programs that help these men reenter the workforce, and the lives of the children, in a way that allows them to work off their arrears and, eventually, to "have their arrears reduced to zero.
NEWS
By Ellen Gamerman and Ellen Gamerman,States News Service | July 13, 1994
WASHINGTON -- Federal agencies should withhold benefits and new jobs from workers who fail to pay court-ordered child support, a House panel was told yesterday."
NEWS
By Yvonne Wenger, The Baltimore Sun | November 14, 2012
The state contractor that collects child support payments in Baltimore continues to have trouble meeting the terms of its agreement, according to a report released Wednesday by the Office of Legislative Audits calling for better oversight by the Department of Human Resources. In a follow-up review after blasting the agency last year for not doing enough to collect payments, the auditors said the state had completed or begun to address nearly all issues, but noted that the department had made only "minimal progress" addressing contracting issues in Baltimore.
NEWS
By David L. Warnock | October 21, 2012
Imagine this: You're a single man in your 20s, in Baltimore, with an eighth-grade education and two young children. You've just served three years in jail for a nonviolent crime, such as selling marijuana. While you were in jail - earning no income - your child-support obligations continued to accrue, leaving you $22,000 in arrears upon your release. This number (the average total amount owed by a noncustodial parent who is currently or formerly incarcerated, according to the Family Welfare Research and Training Group at the University of Maryland School of Social Work)
NEWS
September 3, 2012
The stereotype of the lazy, irresponsible "deadbeat dad" who won't cough up the cash for Pampers and formula has been a fixture in the debate over why states have such a hard time collecting delinquent child-support payments from absent fathers. Every few years, lawmakers decide to get tough on the alleged miscreants by stiffening the penalties for missing a support payment, revoking their professional licenses or certifications and even, in some cases, throwing them in jail. Then they sit back and wonder why, despite the righteousness of the cause, nothing much seems to change.
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