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December 29, 2011
When people run for office, they solicit and receive campaign contributions from people in many lines of work. It can cost a lot of money to run for public office. But what are the expectations once the election is over? Is it realistic to expect someone who makes a major contribution to a candidate to stand back for four years and expect that elected official to do what the contributor thinks is the right thing? Is it OK for the office holder to meet regularly with the contributor to review legislation that directly affects the contributor?
ARTICLES BY DATE
BUSINESS
By Scott Dance and The Baltimore Sun | September 26, 2014
Every day companies mine online data to track consumer habits, but two University of Maryland law professors say Facebook and dating service OkCupid went too far by manipulating their users' experience to study their behavior. At the professors' urging, Maryland Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler agreed to review this week whether the companies' actions are akin to patients being pulled into medical research without their knowledge. Federal law requires participants' consent and independent oversight of such experiments, and a state law broadened those regulations.
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NEWS
September 2, 2012
Congrats to Christopher Dreisbach on his thoughtful presentation of the logical and ethical considerations necessary to the anti-abortion argument ("Abortion ethics not so simple," Aug. 28). What gets my blood boiling though, is that he apparently misses the same "elephant in the room" that Rep. Todd Akin missed. Mr. Akin jumped right from the punishment of the rapist to the punishment of "another innocent victim" - meaning the fetus. What both he and Mr. Dreisbach missed was the woman in the middle.
SPORTS
By Matt Zenitz and Baltimore Sun Media Group | September 18, 2014
COLLEGE PARK -  At different points, Maryland's media relations staff is responsible for tracking down Terps players. Some players can be more difficult to find or get in touch with. But Matt Taylor, Maryland's primary media contact for football, says sophomore cornerback Will Likely is not one of them. If Likely is not in class or on the practice field, Taylor says Likely is often just in the Terps' defensive back team meeting room evaluating film. People can see Likely's talent.
NEWS
February 17, 2012
In regards to on legislation that seeks to "clamp down" on elected officials found guilty of serious charges ("Bills aim at guilty officials," Feb. 13), I would like to see our lawmakers take it a step further: If you violate ethics rules, you lose everything, including your pension, no matter when you broke the law. Admittedly, it's a bit Draconian. On the other hand, if you're an elected official and you play it straight, you've nothing to worry about. It's a no-brainer. I should think all elected and other government officials would leap at this opportunity to be the first to endorse such legislation.
NEWS
April 23, 2010
The ethics measures signed into law Wednesday by Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake may not be as "sweeping" as the mayor claims, but they are an important step forward. Not least of all because they should help restore public trust in City Hall, something Ms. Rawlings-Blake had pledged to make a top priority. Baltimoreans will long remember that the ethics board found no fault with the actions of former Mayor Sheila Dixon up to and including the moment she was criminally indicted.
NEWS
March 12, 2012
Perhaps the only welcome consequence of state Sen. Ulysses Currie's disgrace and censure over his apparent use of his public office for private gain was Senate PresidentThomas V. Mike Miller's creation of a special work group on ethics. The bipartisan committee, formed in the aftermath of Mr. Currie's acquittal in court, was charged with finding legislation to improve ethics practices in state government and to do so during the current General Assembly session. It is a disappointment, then, that one of its first recommendations is for a bill that would actually weaken ethics standards.
NEWS
June 27, 2012
John Fritze's article, "Bartlett fumbles finance reports," (June 25) serves to point out once again the problems arising with politicians taking campaign contributions. There is only one answer to such a fiasco. Politicians should do what I do as a teacher of political science. In my last two campaigns, for governor in and for U.S. Senate, I made a commitment to refuse any campaign contributions whatsoever. On a budget by design of $450 for the 2010 campaign and $280 for the 2012 campaign, my vote total was 22,828 votes.
NEWS
By Michael Dresser, The Baltimore Sun | April 9, 2012
Amid all the hoopla about the budget and gambling, some significant bills that had been held up until the last day began making progress through the General Assembly. Among the bills whose proponents were trying to beat the clock was the administration's effort to write new rules governing public-private partnerships (P3s) and a Senate-originated effort to put legislators' ethics disclosures on line. The House agreed to the Senate's decision to leave a controversial amendment off the P3 bill but made other changes that required the approval of both the House and Senate before midnight.
NEWS
October 31, 2011
I agree with letter writer Bill Miller ("Currie trial reveals flawed political system," Oct. 27) that a system in which a legislator can be personally compensated for assisting a constituent presents an obvious conflict of interest. At least it should, but I know that in Maryland state government, that doesn't seem to be the case. It's very disheartening to the voters and taxpayers as we have no influence to change this system. Most legislators have full-time jobs outside of the General Assembly, but when it is in session and they are doing the people's business, it is unseemly that they get to make laws and be compensated by others.
NEWS
By Kevin Rector, The Baltimore Sun | September 5, 2014
The state ethics board is reviewing one of the firms bidding to build and operate the Purple Line after the engineering company was acquired by another MTA contractor. Engineering design firm AECOM, which in 2011 was awarded an 8-year, $60-million contract with the MTA to oversee the Purple Line and the proposed Red Line in Baltimore, among other projects, announced in July that it had reached an agreement to acquire engineering and construction firm URS Corp. URS Corp. is the lead design company for a group known as the Maryland Purple Line Partners, one of four groups that have been short-listed by the state to submit proposals for what will be a public-private partnership with the state to build the transit line linking Montgomery and Prince George's counties.
HEALTH
By Matthew Hay Brown, The Baltimore Sun | August 26, 2014
As the Ebola virus ravages West Africa, two American health workers who contracted the disease in Liberia were airlifted back to the United States to be treated with an experimental drug. They have since recovered. But colleagues of a doctor in Sierra Leone, stricken as he led his country's fight against the virus, decided against giving him the same medicine. He has since died. The worst Ebola outbreak in history, combined with the existence, in small amounts, of untested drugs that might prove effective in combating it, is raising questions about the ethics of fighting an epidemic.
NEWS
By Joe Burris, The Baltimore Sun | July 16, 2014
Former Anne Arundel County school board member Eugene Peterson formally resigned Tuesday from the school system's ethics panel, less than a week after the board requested he step down for comments made at June meeting where he referred to interim superintendent Mamie Perkins as "Aunt Jemima. " Peterson, who is African-American, said he sent a resignation letter Tuesday to school board president Stacy Korbelak, one of six board members that approved a resolution censuring Peterson for his comments.
NEWS
By Joe Burris, The Baltimore Sun | July 9, 2014
A former Anne Arundel County school board member says he'll resign from a school system ethics panel after being censured by the board for comments he made last month, including a reference to then-interim superintendent Mamie Perkins as "Aunt Jemima. " On Wednesday the board moved to censure Eugene Peterson and called for his resignation from the ethics panel. Board vice president Patricia Nalley read a motion criticizing Peterson for "inappropriate and startling" comments and said it "demonstrated his poor judgment and his willingness to employ derogatory and despicable language to describe highly regarded and well respected public officials.
NEWS
By Liz Bowie, The Baltimore Sun | June 12, 2014
The Baltimore County school board ethics panel has ruled that Superintendent Dallas Dance violated rules when he took a consulting job with a professional development company that does business with the school system. School board President Lawrence Schmidt said Thursday that in light of the ruling, the board and Dance have agreed that he will not take any other consulting jobs as long as he works for the school system. Dance also said in a statement that he would be more careful to avoid conflicts.
NEWS
By Meredith Cohn, The Baltimore Sun | June 9, 2014
How do public health experts handle research when they know they cannot offer subjects the best medical treatment possible - only "less than the best" solutions? It poses serious ethical issues, especially when children are involved in the research, as a controversial Kennedy Krieger Institute study shows. Just 20 years ago, most houses in East Baltimore contained lead paint that was known to be poisoning children at epidemic levels. Amid the crisis, researchers at the pediatric hospital sought cheap, effective abatement techniques because full-scale cleanup could cost $20,000 or more per house - more than many of the properties were worth.
NEWS
by Annie Linskey | March 22, 2012
Maryland's Senate gave preliminary approval Thursday to legislation that would require the state to put lawmakers' ethics forms online.  The legislation was supported by watchdog group Common Cause in the wake of a federal corruption trial that starred Sen. Ulysses S. Currie, a Prince George's County Democrat. Currie was found not guilty of bribery charges, but the Senate censured him for failing to disclose payments from a grocery chain on his ethics forms. Currently, anyone wishing to view state lawmakers' ethics forms must visit an office in Annapolis, provide an ID that includes a home address, and sign a form showing which lawmakers' records are to be inspected.
SPORTS
By Timothy B. Wheeler, The Baltimore Sun | February 5, 2013
Del. Emmett C. Burns Jr. said Tuesday he “accepted” his admonishment by the General Assembly's ethics committee for using legislative stationery last year in trying to silence Baltimore Ravens linebacker Brendon Ayanbadejo's outspoken support for same-sex marriage.  But the Baltimore County Democrat insisted he had nothing to apologize for in speaking out. Burns said the ethics panel wrote him chiding him for using official stationery to write...
NEWS
May 23, 2014
If there is one criticism that is most consistently delivered by the opponents of Lt. Gov. Anthony G. Brown in his quest to replace Gov. Martin O'Malley, it is that he is a paragon of the status quo, the anointed son of an insular Democratic Party establishment. If he wanted to prove his critics' point, he could not have found a more damning way to do it than with his support for disgraced state Sen. Ulysses Currie for re-election. Mr. Currie is facing a spirited primary challenge in the 25th District in Prince George's County, which Mr. Brown used to represent in the House of Delegates.
NEWS
By Jacques Kelly, The Baltimore Sun | May 15, 2014
Dr. Stanley Roy Platman, a retired psychiatrist and health administrator recalled as a champion of community-based mental health services, died after heart surgery May 7 at MedStar Union Memorial Hospital. The Guilford resident was 79. "Stanley would take on as patients human beings most others in his field would not," said Ellen Callegary, an attorney who represents clients with disabilities and lives in Baltimore. "He helped people with complex needs, including those with developmental disabilities and mental illnesses.
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