Thu June 5, 2014
A Gubernatorial Debate, Attack Ads, Frosh Picks Up O’Malley Endorsement, & Baltimore Property Taxes
The three top Democratic candidates for governor hold their final broadcast debate this morning. An independent expenditure group launches the latest attack ad in the governor’s race. State Senator Brian Frosh’s bid to be MD’s next Attorney General picks up the endorsement of Governor Martin O’Malley. Baltimore’s property tax rate falls. And more.
Final Broadcast Gubernatorial Debate Before The Primary Election: The three top Democratic candidates for governor hold their final broadcast debate this morning, a radio debate on WOLB. It starts at 8am, and Lieutenant Governor Anthony Brown, state Attorney General Doug Gansler, and Montgomery County Delegate Heather Mizeur will all attend. The Baltimore Sun has more.
Attack Ads In Governor’s Race: The Democratic gubernatorial race is becoming increasingly negative. WYPR’s Chris Connolly reports that the Brown and Gansler camps released their first TV attack ads late last week. And yesterday, an independent expenditure group called “One State, One Future” released another attack ad – this one going after Gansler. The Washington Post reports that the group is primarily funded by labor unions, many of which have endorsed Brown. The group says it did not coordinate with the Brown camp in releasing the ad. Maryland’s primary election will be held on June 24th, and early voting begins a week from today, on Thursday, June 12th.
Will Voters Pick Brown To Manage $40 Billion Operation? Lieutenant Governor Anthony Brown’s front-runner status in this year’s Democratic gubernatorial primary may or may not be affected by his handling of the Obamacare rollout. WYPR’s Senior News Analyst Fraser Smith comments in his weekly essay.
Frosh To Get O’Malley’s Endorsement In AG Race: State Senator Brian Frosh’s bid to be the next Attorney General of Maryland is set to get Governor Martin O’Malley’s endorsement today. Frosh is in a three-way race for the A-G’s post in the Democratic primary; also running are Delegates Aisha Braveboy and Jon Cardin. The Baltimore Sun reports that Delegate Cardin will get the endorsement of his uncle – US Senator Ben Cardin – at an event next week.
Baltimore Property Tax Rate Cut: Baltimore’s property tax rate is set to fall again. The city’s Board of Estimates agreed yesterday to lower the rate to $2.13 per $100 of assessed value – a move that the Baltimore Sun reports will result in a cut of $174 from the average homeowner’s property tax bill. The reduction is part of Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake’s plan to cut the tax by 20 cents by the year 2020. Baltimore’s property tax rate remains the highest in Maryland.
Towing Reform: Car-towing companies in Baltimore call it “trespass towing.” Someone parks on private property and the owner calls a towing company to take the car away. City Councilman Robert Curran says it’s gotten out of control. Curran says the rules governing towing companies are too loose; he argues that they allow predatory practices, and says he thinks the fees towing companies can charge are too high. And Curran has legislation that would change all that. WYPR’s Kenneth Burns reports that those in the towing industry are surprised by the proposal.
Displaced Charles Village Residents To Return Home Today: People who were displaced from their homes after April’s street collapse in Baltimore’s Charles Village will be able to return home today. While some people are happy to be able to return, others still have some major issues. As WJZ reports, some say their homes have construction dust inside, while others say all of the debris still hasn't been removed after the landslide.
Philadelphia Road Bridge To Be Replaced: The Philadelphia Road Bridge over James Run in Harford County is being replaced this summer. State highway officials say crews will be shutting down the bridge in mid-June after the school year ends and there's less traffic. The project to replace the 90-year-old bridge should be finished by late August and will cost about two-million dollars. Detours will be posted in the area, directing drivers to Route 40, but I-95 is also an alternate route. The Havre de Grace Patch has more.
Baltimore Baseball: The Orioles won last night’s game against the Texas Rangers, beating them 6 to 5. The two teams wrap up their series tonight.
Washington Baseball: The Washington Nationals won yesterday’s match with the Philadelphia Phillies; the score there, 8 to 4.
Saturday’s Belmont Stakes: The horse “California Chrome” is the three-to-five morning-line favorite for Saturday's Belmont Stakes. The winner of the Kentucky Derby and Baltimore’s Preakness Stakes is trying to become the first horse to win the Triple Crown since Affirmed in 1978. Starting gate assignments have been set for Saturday's 146th running of the Belmont Stakes and “California Chrome” will be in the number two post-position.