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NEWS
May 19, 2000
IT'S NOT racism that keeps minorities from reaching the top ranks of the Baltimore County police department. Blame current county law. The system is structured to favor officers with long periods of service. As a result, it will take a considerable time before a good number of minorities -- many of whom have been hired as part of a diversity push over the past few years -- to reach the department's upper ranks. Promotions are partially based on passing written exams and oral interviews.
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NEWS
By Luke Broadwater, The Baltimore Sun | April 23, 2014
The drama over Baltimore's dysfunctional phone system began its next act Wednesday, with the city authorizing a private attorney to defend Comptroller Joan M. Pratt amid an ethics investigation — and Pratt leveling more accusations that the Rawlings-Blake administration is wasting taxpayer dollars through inaction. The Board of Estimates approved $2,000 for Pratt to hire an attorney as the city's ethics board investigates whether she should have accepted free legal work from Orioles owner Peter G. Angelos' law firm in 2012, when she sued the administration alleging illegal practices.
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NEWS
March 9, 2012
Unfortunately, it appears that for some time Baltimore City school personnel have been setting an example for students that cheating is acceptable as long as you don't get caught ("Schools keep eye on testing," March 5). Here's my suggestion for eliminating this problem during the city schools' annual standardized achievement testing period: Arrangements should be made to ensure that the students being tested are the only individuals who touch the test booklets or answer cards.
NEWS
April 2, 2014
Maryland is ditching the health insurance exchange it has spent tens of millions in federal and state dollars to develop, and Gov. Martin O'Malley's critics are heaping well-deserved condemnation on him for the debacle. Where they go wrong is in suggesting that he's making the same mistake all over again. Rep. Andy Harris, who has quite correctly sought to remedy the lack of accountability for the system's failure thus far, criticized the governor for adopting Connecticut's system, which he said will cost tens of millions more and be uncertain to work, instead of using the federal government's exchange, which he implied would be free of cost and risk.
NEWS
By Kerry O'Rourke and Kerry O'Rourke,Staff Writer | January 5, 1993
Carroll commissioners voted unanimously yesterday that the county should apply for federal permission to upgrade its emergency radio communications system, giving supporters hope that the project will be funded.Last month, the Planning Commission recommended to the commissioners that the $6.3 million project not be funded in the coming fiscal year because money is tight."The time is now. We ought to submit our application," Commissioner Julia W. Gouge said.But the commissioners' vote does not mean they are sold on the idea of buying a new emergency radio system.
NEWS
November 23, 2012
This is my 15th year teaching in Baltimore City. I am a second-career teacher and plan to retire in three years. I have taken two sick days in that time. However, the school system operates under a use-them-or-lose-them policy unless you stay in the system for 20 years. That just will not be possible for me, and since 50 percent of all teachers leave by the fifth year, the current system simply promotes the taking of sick leave unnecessarily ("This looks a lot like playing hooky," Nov. 13)
NEWS
By Robert Guy Matthews and Robert Guy Matthews,SUN STAFF | November 16, 1995
In addition to the 28 percent raises for the Baltimore City Council, five members stand to gain earlier retirement benefits under legislation that would ease pension requirements for all officials on the legislative panel.After 12 years of service, all council members would receive 30 percent of their $36,000 salaries and health benefits once they retire, if the bill passes. The proposal has widespread support on the council.The current system has two sets of requirements:If a council member turns 50 before the end of a third term -- 12 years -- the member is vested automatically.
NEWS
July 6, 2000
How should political campaigns be financed? With public funds or a special tax? Should supporters be limited in what they can contribute? The current system doesn't seem to be working. What changes would you favor? We are looking for 300 words or less; the deadline is July 24. Letters become the property of The Sun, which reserves the right to edit them. By submitting a letter, the author grants The Sun an irrevocable, non-exclusive right and license to use and republish the letter, in whole or in part, in all media and to authorize others to reprint it. Letters should include your name and address, along with a day and evening telephone number.
NEWS
June 9, 1993
Baltimore company gets radio system workCarroll commissioners voted yesterday to accept a Baltimore company's bid for beginning to replace or repair the county's emergency radio system.Ram Communications Consultants will do preliminary work on preparing bid specifications for the project. The commissioners have not decided whether to replace or repair the system. Either option would cost about $6 million.The current system is overloaded. The county has applied to the Federal Communications Commission for 10 new channels in the 800-megahertz frequency band.
NEWS
November 14, 1994
For a preview of how difficult it will be to reduce waste in government spending, consider a consultant's proposal calling for competitive bidding of Carroll County's school bus routes.Even though the current political mantra is that government should be run more like a business, non-economic considerations often prevent government agencies from realizing business-like efficiencies that would reduce costs.As part of a performance audit of Carroll's education system, KPMG Peat Marwick, the national accounting firm, recommended awarding school bus contracts through competitive bidding.
NEWS
By Michael Dresser and The Baltimore Sun | December 3, 2013
Democratic gubernatorial candidate Heather R. Mizeur will announce Wednesday that she will become the first contender for that office since 1994 to accept public financing of her campaign - effectively limiting her spending on the primary to about $2.5 million. Mizeur, a two-term delegate from Montgomery County, will announce her decision as part of her roll out of a broad proposal to curb the influence of special interests on elections. Among the provisions will be replacement of Maryland's current, limited financing scheme with a comprehensive system.
NEWS
By Alison Knezevich, The Baltimore Sun | February 18, 2013
State lawmakers are asking the Baltimore County Council to postpone a vote on a measure that would change the way public employees may challenge decisions on retirement benefits, saying it could violate state law. All but two members of the county delegation to Annapolis signed a letter circulated last week by labor leaders. They are asking the council not to vote on the bill until the General Assembly is briefed on its legal implications. Lawmakers said they also want to hear from the state attorney general on the measure.
NEWS
By Michael Dresser, The Baltimore Sun | January 29, 2013
Republicans in the House of Delegates proposed legislation Tuesday that they say would shore up the state employee pension system while cutting the risk that taxpayers will be left on the hook for losses. The House GOP leadership is backing a package of bills that would, among other things, steer the $40 billion system away from what Republicans consider overly risky investments and lower the long-term assumptions of the retirement plan's earnings on its investments. "The rose-colored-glasses projection of our pension system is deceptive to the citizens of Maryland," said House Minority Leader Anthony J. O'Donnell of Calvert County.
NEWS
November 23, 2012
This is my 15th year teaching in Baltimore City. I am a second-career teacher and plan to retire in three years. I have taken two sick days in that time. However, the school system operates under a use-them-or-lose-them policy unless you stay in the system for 20 years. That just will not be possible for me, and since 50 percent of all teachers leave by the fifth year, the current system simply promotes the taking of sick leave unnecessarily ("This looks a lot like playing hooky," Nov. 13)
NEWS
By Kevin Rector, The Baltimore Sun | September 30, 2012
A City Council resolution requesting that the Baltimore Police Department share active 911 responses online was met with resistance from police officials Tuesday during an initial reading before the public safety committee. Police said the city's Computer Aided Dispatch system is too dated to perform the task. The Police Department and various other city agencies are in the process of developing "a much more robust CAD system that would offer these types of capabilities," but the new system won't be in place until September 2014, said Maj. Joseph Smith, who commands the department's Central Records Section.
NEWS
By Alison Knezevich, The Baltimore Sun | April 29, 2012
More restaurant owners in Baltimore County could get liquor licenses under a measure passed in Annapolis that's set to take effect within the next few months. The legislation, sought by County Executive Kevin Kamenetz, is meant to gradually open up more licenses over the next five years. Kamenetz pushed for more sweeping changes, but current license holders opposed them. Kamenetz created a task force last year to examine the county's system of issuing liquor licenses, saying that the current set-up is archaic and that reform would help spur economic development throughout the restaurant sector.
NEWS
March 9, 2012
Unfortunately, it appears that for some time Baltimore City school personnel have been setting an example for students that cheating is acceptable as long as you don't get caught ("Schools keep eye on testing," March 5). Here's my suggestion for eliminating this problem during the city schools' annual standardized achievement testing period: Arrangements should be made to ensure that the students being tested are the only individuals who touch the test booklets or answer cards.
NEWS
February 27, 2012
Randy Hart's letter implies everything is great in our health insurance markets right now and that the federal health reform will wreck everything ("Insurance exchanges won't reduce health care costs," Feb. 21). I think Maryland's small businesses and families that are struggling to afford health care would disagree. To paraphrase the late Sen. Patrick Moynihan, Mr. Hart is entitled to his own opinion, but not to his own facts. Mr. Hart asserts that nine in 10 Marylanders have coverage through their employer.
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