Mon June 2, 2014
Baltimore’s Curfew, Petition Drive On Transgender Rights Law Falls Short, & New Speed Camera Laws
The Baltimore City Council will likely cast a final vote tonight on a bill expanding the city’s curfew.
The Charles Village residents displaced by April’s street collapse could return home this week. A petition drive aimed at overturning a transgender antidiscrimination bill falls short. New speed camera laws are now in effect. The three major Democratic gubernatorial candidates are set to hold their last televised debate tonight. And more.
Tonight’s Democratic Gubernatorial Debate: The three major Democratic gubernatorial candidates will be participating in a televised debate tonight on MPT. Lieutenant Governor Anthony Brown has been the target of criticism by his opponents for his absence at last week's debate televised on Fox 45. Tonight's discussion between Brown, state Attorney General Doug Gansler, and Montgomery County Delegate Heather Mizeur airs live at 7pm. The Republican gubernatorial candidates are also debating today, but their discussion will air on MPT Friday at 7 pm. The Washington Post has more.
Charles Village Residents Displaced By Street Collapse To Return Home This Week: Baltimore City officials say that residents of 26th street displaced after part of it collapsed back in April will be able to move back into their homes as soon as Thursday. Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake made the announcement yesterday after meeting with those residents. She said crews working around the clock made for an earlier move in date. Officials are planning for residents to move back in between Thursday and Saturday. BGE will be contacting them starting today to schedule appointments to reconnect utility services to the affected homes. Crews will begin looking at a long-term, more permanent fix. That project is expected to last five to six months. No parking will be allowed on 26th Street between Charles and St. Paul for the foreseeable future. WYPR’s Kenneth Burns has more.
Baltimore’s Curfew: The Baltimore City Council seems poised to adopt one of the strictest curfews in the country. The Council will cast a final vote tonight on a bill that would set a year-round 9pm curfew for kids younger than 14 years old, with later times for older kids. The bill also expands the city’s daytime curfew to the hours of 7:30am to 3pm, with exceptions for kids traveling to or from school. The bill won preliminary approval on a vote of 11 to 2, and Mayor Rawlings-Blake says she’ll sign it if it reaches her desk. Opponents characterize the measure as too severe, and say it could create new problems. WYPR’s Kenneth Burns talks with Nathan Sterner about the curfew bill here.
Referendum On Transgender Antidiscrimination Law Fails: A law that expands protections for transgender people in Maryland is now on track to go into effect this fall, without the possibility of being overturned by referendum. This, after the group MDPetitions.com failed to gather the required number of signatures for the referendum process to continue by a deadline over the weekend. The transgender rights law forbids discrimination on the basis of gender identity in employment, housing, and public accommodations. The Baltimore Sun has more here; there’s more here from the Washington Post.
Why Brown Supports Currie, Despite Past Ethics Violations: WYPR's Fraser Smith and Andy Green of the Baltimore Sun talk about why Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown is appearing on a mailer that praises State Sen. Ulysses Currie, despite Currie's past indictment and censure for ethics violations. It’s this morning’s edition of Inside Maryland Politics.
New Speed Camera Rules: Speed camera companies will no longer get a paycheck every time a driver gets a ticket in Maryland. The so-called “bounty system” – which lawmakers say they never intended to allow in the first place – has been formally made against the law, under reforms that took effect yesterday. Several other rule changes for the administration of speed camera programs are now in effect. State officials say now there will be an ombudsman to handle complaints in every jurisdiction, cameras will be calibrated each year, and school zones will be more clearly defined. The Washington Post has more here.
Bottle Bomb Suspect Arrested: Authorities in Maryland have a suspect in custody for allegedly terrorizing theater-goers with bottle bombs. The 20-year-old man is accused of exploding homemade devices at movie a theater in Virginia and one in Maryland. No one was injured in either incident. The Capital Gazette has more here.
Baltimore Bike-Share Program Suspended After Thefts: A Baltimore bike-share program is suspended indefinitely due to the theft of more than 40 bikes. City officials say the blue beach cruisers and children's bikes used in the Ride Around the Reservoir program were stolen from Druid Hill Park early last week. For the last six years, the program has allowed people to borrow bikes and helmets and ride through the park. City officials say anyone who has one of the stolen bikes can drop it off at a recreation center -- no questions asked. The Baltimore Sun has more.
Frederick Bike-Share Program Put On Hold: A proposed bike-share program in Frederick has been put on hold. The Frederick News Post reports that the city’s Board of Aldermen voted last week to postpone implementation of the program until information about a similar program in Montgomery County is in.
Baltimore Baseball: The Orioles won yesterday’s game against the Houston Astros; the score was 9 to 4. The O’s take a break today; tomorrow, they’ll face off against the Texas Rangers.
Washington Baseball: The Washington Nationals faced off against the Rangers yesterday – and lost. The score there: 2 to 0.