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NEWS
By C. Fraser Smith and C. Fraser Smith,SUN STAFF | February 27, 1999
Continuing to broaden the scope of his new job, Maryland Comptroller William Donald Schaefer has invited local officials to bring him their problems.The invitation, sent in a Feb. 17 letter to leaders across the state, was open-ended."
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HEALTH
By Meredith Cohn and The Baltimore Sun | September 18, 2014
As an unusual strain of virus continues its march across the country — showing up most recently in Pennsylvania and Virginia — health officials in Maryland are warning doctors to be on the lookout and advising parents to prepare. Enterovirus is common, with millions in the United States sickened every year, most with mild cases. But the relatively rare strain called EV-D68 can cause severe respiratory illness in children with asthma or other health conditions, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warns.
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NEWS
By Lyle Denniston and Lyle Denniston,SUN NATIONAL STAFF | March 4, 1998
WASHINGTON -- The Supreme Court, answering a question left open for more than 120 years, ruled unanimously yesterday that city and county officials cannot be sued under federal law for writing local laws that violate someone's civil rights.The ruling extends to local officials a shield of immunity that has long protected members of Congress and state legislatures. Local legislators, too, need insulation from the distractions and costs of lawsuits based on their lawmaking activity, the court said.
BUSINESS
By Kevin Rector, The Baltimore Sun | April 22, 2014
The dueling complaints by two port of Baltimore union officials alleging the other assaulted him now will be considered by residents of Baltimore, after their attorneys requested a jury trial in the case. Maryland District Court Judge Timothy D. Murphy approved the requests Tuesday. Riker "Rocky" McKenzie, president of the International Longshoremen's Association Local 333, filed a complaint on Nov. 8 alleging the union's then-secretary-treasurer, Daryl Wilburn, assaulted him during an altercation that morning at the local's Locust Point union hall.
NEWS
By SIOBHAN GORMAN and SIOBHAN GORMAN,SUN REPORTER | October 19, 2005
WASHINGTON -- Yesterday, it was the tunnels beneath Baltimore harbor. Two weeks ago, it was the New York subway. In both cases, the questions for local officials were the same: Can and should they act on information of a potential terrorist plot in their city? And in both cases, the federal government did a lousy job of helping them find answers, said Rep. Jane Harman of California, the top Democrat on the House intelligence panel. In alleged terror plots, information often comes from overseas, as in the Baltimore threat, and must be vetted through multiple intelligence agencies.
NEWS
By Michael Dresser, The Baltimore Sun | February 15, 2012
County leaders and Baltimore Mayor Stephanie-Rawlings-Blake came together Wednesday in Annapolis to fight the governor's proposal to shift part of the cost of teacher pensions to local governments, saying they would have to cut deeply into essential services to pay for such a change. "This puts a potentially devastating squeeze on local government," said Howard County Executive Ken Ulman, a Democrat. "Find the $239 million somewhere else in the budget. " The local officials pointed to libraries, public safety and education as services that could be hurt if the General Assembly transfers millions of dollars in costs to them.
NEWS
By Heather Dewar and Heather Dewar,SUN STAFF | February 3, 1999
ROCKY RIDGE -- They love their farms in Frederick County, but they don't love being downwind and downstream from the largest hog-raising operation in Maryland.Since a local man set up a feedlot for 4,000 hogs -- without local scrutiny or state oversight -- Frederick County residents and officials have declared war on what opponents deride as "factory farms."The county is poised to become the first in Maryland to ban large hog feedlots, ones that operate like factory production lines and have caused serious pollution and odor problems in the Carolinas and the Midwest.
NEWS
November 26, 1999
GENERAL Motors' decision to keep its 64-year-old Baltimore Assembly plant operating four more years is a significant opportunity for state and local officials.It isn't yet cause for celebration: One shift of 1,200 employees may be eliminated, and the plant's fate beyond 2003 is uncertain. But with 2,600 jobs and an estimated $1 billion impact on the local economy, GM's Broening Highway plant is a major economic asset to the region.Its future has been up in the air for years. Previously, GM said it would wind down Broening's production of Chevrolet Astro and GMC Safari minivans at the end of 2001.
NEWS
September 20, 1990
When William Donald Schaefer was mayor of Baltimore, he and fellow local officials passed along to the state the disagreeable chore of assessing property for taxation purposes. Now, as governor, he is contemplating giving it back.He shouldn't.The Department of Assessments and Taxation is in some ways a misnomer, in that the job of appraising the value of a property is easily confused with the tax rate. The department's new secretary, Lloyd Jones, makes this point by taking pains to refer to the department's staff as appraisers, not assessors.
NEWS
August 27, 1992
We are struck by the absence of emotion and lack of ready solutions from local budget officers in the wake of Gov. William Donald Schaefer's weekend announcement that the state budget deficit is spreading toward a half-billion dollars.Some local officials don't believe the shortfall will be so large. Others say they can wait for the state to specify the cuts, possibly in the next couple of weeks. The main reasons, however, for the muted echo of resignation in City Hall and county chambers seem two-fold: Local bean counters saw this coming in the spring when the state optimistically estimated 6 percent revenue growth while everyone else estimated 1 or 2 percent.
FEATURES
Tim Wheeler | September 26, 2013
A leading legislator expects a "very strong push" to repeal Maryland's storm-water fee law when lawmakers return to Annapolis in January, but vows to fight any rollback. Del. Maggie McIntosh , who chairs the House Environmental Matters Committee, told attendees at a "storm-water summit" in Baltimore Wednesday that she expects another effort to negate the 2012 law requiring the city and Maryland's nine largest counties to raise funds for controlling runoff pollution from their communities.
NEWS
August 11, 2013
A federal appellate court last week found fault with two Frederick County sheriff's deputies who arrested a Salvadoran woman on the basis of a civil immigration warrant, but county officials appear unbowed in their determination to act as adjunct border patrol agents. After discussing the case at their meeting Thursday, four of the five county commissioners voted to send a letter of support to the sheriff and his deputies, and Commissioners President Blaine Young pledged that county officials would continue to enforce immigration laws as much as possible in an effort to make Frederick the Maryland county that is "most unfriendly to illegal aliens.
FEATURES
Tim Wheeler | May 31, 2013
Unhappy over a state law requiring property owners to pay a new fee to help clean up the Chesapeake Bay, Frederick County officials have decided to set the charge at just a penny a year. The county's board of commissioners approved the 1-cent storm-water pollution control fee on Thursday, declaring they were doing even that only to avoid possible state restrictions on new development in the county if they didn't act. "We are being forced to charge this fee, so we decided to keep it at one cent just to meet the letter of the law," Blaine Young, president of the county commissioners, said in a press release announcing the action.
NEWS
By Jessica Anderson, The Baltimore Sun | December 8, 2012
State and local officials have returned to the Eastern Shore communities ravaged by superstorm Sandy's heavy rains and high winds to comb over the damage in hopes of appealing federal officials' decision to deny aid to Maryland. The Federal Emergency Management Agency declined the state's request for funds for individual residents because the damage was not considered substantial enough. But U.S. Sens. Barbara A. Mikulski and Ben Cardin, Gov. Martin O'Malley's administration and other state leaders vowed this week to appeal the decision, citing extensive damage to the area, where more than 300 homes are estimated to have been severely damaged.
FEATURES
Tim Wheeler | November 27, 2012
A conservation group is warning that many of Maryland's counties are skirting a new state law requiring them to rein in development of rural lands. 1000 Friends of Maryland says that more than a third of the state's 23 counties have done little or nothing so far to comply with the Sustainable Growth and Agricultural Preservation Act of 2012 , which aims to restrict new housing on septic systems in rural areas. "What we have are eight counties that are in the red zone," says Dru Schmidt-Perkins, the Friends executive director.
FEATURES
By Timothy B. Wheeler, The Baltimore Sun | October 4, 2012
— In a challenge to the Obama administration's efforts to jump-start the lagging restoration of the Chesapeake Bay, lawyers for farmers and homebuilders argued in federal court here Thursday that the Environmental Protection Agency overstepped its legal authority and relied on a flawed computer model in setting a pollution "diet" for the ailing estuary. Lawyers for the American Farm Bureau Federation, the National Association of Home Builders, poultry and pork producers, and other farming groups argued that states in the Chesapeake watershed, not the federal government, should be in charge of deciding how and where to reduce pollution fouling the bay. They also complained that the far-reaching "diet" was rushed into place despite gaps and errors and without giving the public enough time to review and comment on it. "It will affect urban growth; it affects how agriculture land will be used," said Richard E. Schwartz, one of the industry groups' lawyers.
NEWS
By Thomas W. Waldron and Thomas W. Waldron,SUN STAFF | June 25, 1996
OCEAN CITY -- Federal, state and local officials agreed yesterday to work together to protect and restore Maryland's distressed coastal bays.The agreement, signed on the dock of a bay-side restaurant, commits the various branches of government to develop a conservation and management plan for the four coastal bays and nearby tributaries.The federal government has earmarked $1.3 million for the bays project.Several officials noted that protecting the bays makes sense both economically and environmentally.
NEWS
December 28, 1990
As Gov. William Donald Schaefer puts the state budget under an exacting microscope to find ways to balance this year's spending plan (still off by $243 million) and next year's plan (off by another $204 million), he is discovering inequities that ought to be corrected. Some counties, for instance, are not doing their part to help their own homeless and needy families: they are letting the state put up all the money for them.Three small counties -- Caroline, Somerset and Garrett -- don't spend a penny of local tax dollars on programs for the homeless.
NEWS
By John Fritze, The Baltimore Sun | August 29, 2012
They are here to support Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, but a handful of Marylanders considering a run for higher office are also hoping to benefit politically from his convention. The concentration of news media - both from Maryland and from other states - serves to elevate their profiles, and that helps with fundraising. There are more subtle advantages to attending the conventions, too: networking with party leaders, befriending longtime campaign volunteers and hearing national politicians at the top of their game give the most important addresses of their political careers.
FEATURES
Tim Wheeler | July 5, 2012
Local officials are voicing concerns about the fiscal and economic impact of a state plan to require less-polluting septic systems on all future homes built beyond the reach of sewers. In a letter this week to the General Assembly's Administrative, Executive and Legislative Review Committee , the Maryland Association of Counties said it's concerned about the O'Malley administration's proposed regulation requiring every new home built on septic use "best available technology" systems that release less nitrogen into ground water and the Chesapeake Bay. While not outright opposed to the requirement, the county group says local health departments believe they'll be forced to hire additional people to inspect construction sites and enforce the regulation.  Leslie Knapp, the association's associate director, also contends that requiring nitrogen-removing systems, which cost twice as much as conventional septic, could hurt local economies.  The septic requirement, when combined with a new energy-efficient building code and requirements that all new homes be equipped with fire sprinklers, could "substantially increase the cost of housing in rural jurisdictions at a time when individuals and families can least afford it," according to Knapp.
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