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Metro

Baltimore drivers could soon be getting fines for “blocking the box.” That’s getting caught in the middle of an intersection when the light changes and tying up traffic. It’s one of a number of new traffic safety enforcement measures throughout the city.

Baltimore City Public Schools

Baltimore City school officials are considering moving from their long-time headquarters on North Avenue—the building that once housed Baltimore Polytechnic Institute. But it’s unclear when, or if, that will happen.

Dominique Maria Bonessi

Senator Ben Cardin visited what must be one of the safest schools in Maryland Thursday morning to talk with students about gun violence, both in and out of school. The school has security guards, cameras and an electric gate.

Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh unveiled her $2.8 billion budget for the coming fiscal year yesterday at a meeting of the Board of Estimates. The budget projects maintaining the property tax rate at $2.25 per $100 of assessed value.

Dominique Maria Bonessi

Students in Baltimore and around the nation walked out of classes Wednesday to protest gun violence in the wake of the mass shooting at a Florida high school last month. About 200 students walked out of Hampstead Hill Academy in East Baltimore chanting, "No justice, no peace, no AR-15s!"

Ben Spier

The Salvation Army opened its first-ever non-profit grocery store in East Baltimore this week, aiming to provide affordable, healthy food options, especially for low income folks using food stamps. So, WYPR went shopping to see how the prices compared to other, nearby stores. 

Dominique Maria Bonessi

Baltimore City’s Board of Estimates voted to spend $100,000 to provide legal representation for undocumented immigrants Wednesday. The money matches a grant from a non-profit that provides legal aid to immigrants.

Dominique Maria Bonessi

Baltimore City Council nearly unanimously confirmed Acting Police Commissioner Darryl De Sousa as the new commissioner last night. WYPR’s City Hall Reporter Dominique Maria Bonessi talks with Morning Edition Host, Nathan Sterner, about witnessing the vote and other measures that would ban various things in the city.

Two Baltimore police officers were convicted by a federal jury Monday night in a case that laid bare dysfunction within the city police department.

The room was silent as the jury foreman read the verdicts against Daniel Hersl and Marcus Taylor, the only officers of the disbanded Gun Trace Task Force to go to trial. Racketeering, guilty; racketeering conspiracy, guilty; robbery with the use of force, guilty.

Dominique Maria Bonessi

Baltimore’s acting Police Commissioner Darryl De Sousa announced additional internal changes to the department Friday. The appointment of one deputy commissioner, Thomas Cassella, is being held up.

De Sousa had named Cassella to be Deputy Commissioner for the Operations Bureau, but documents were leaked to the media alleging two disciplinary complaints against him.

Rachel Baye

 

Gov. Larry Hogan called for increasing mandatory minimum sentences for violent repeat offenders during his State of the State address last week. The bills to do that came up for a hearing Tuesday in a House of Delegates committee and ran into opposition.

Dominique Maria Bonessi

With scathing revelations coming out of the Gun Trace Task Force trials daily, a record year of violence in 2017, and increased mistrust between the police and community, Acting Commissioner Darryl DeSousa has a lot of work on his hands. DeSousa discussed plans to change his department with state lawmakers Friday.

Jamyla Krempel

Baltimore City is suing a number of drug companies and distributors as well as two Baltimore County doctors for their alleged roles in the city’s opioid crisis. The city joins more than a hundred states and cities that have already filed lawsuits against the companies. WYPR City Hall Reporter Dominique Maria Bonessi talked with Nathan Sterner about the suit.

Rachel Baye

Baltimore City Democrats and others gave Gov. Larry Hogan’s State of the State address mixed reviews Wednesday.

John Lee

 

Some people who live near Baltimore County’s animal shelter in Baldwin  say the sound of barking dogs is blasting into their neighborhood and dumping on their quality of life. The County Council is considering legislation that would spell out how many barks and yelps could land the pound in the doghouse.

 

Mary Rose Madden / wypr

The pictures of collapsed ceilings and students wearing parkas and gloves in their classroooms earlier this month outraged parents, grandparents and teachers. 

They showed up at a town hall meeting at Dunbar High School Monday and a school board meeting Tuesday to express fears for their children's safety and complain of a lack of communication from school administrators.

People at the town hall meeting held signs that read “warmth is a basic human right” and “no more excuses.” 

Pat McDonough/Facebook

 

“The thing about Baltimore County is, it has potential for greatness, and it has the potential for disaster.”

 

Tune in to Delegate Pat McDonough’s radio show Saturday nights on WCBM-680, and you’ll hear callers like Barbara giving her full-throated support for the President, and McDonough giving it right back.

John Lee

 

  

Former Governor Martin O’Malley is taking sides in a three-way race for the Democratic nomination for Baltimore County executive.

 

Dominique Maria Bonessi

The Federal Bureau of Investigation rejected the Baltimore Police Department’s request to take over the investigation of the shooting death of Homicide Detective Sean Suiter. Police Commissioner Kevin Davis says the department will go back to square one of the investigation.

Dominique Maria Bonessi

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen came to Baltimore today to talk about immigration and Central American gangs. Sessions tied that to Baltimore’s soaring homicide rate.

Sessions spoke of increases in violent crime nationwide, in part fueled by the Central American gang, MS-13, then turned to Baltimore.

John Lee

 

Baltimore County Councilman Julian Jones wants the school board to vote to make Verletta White the county’s permanent school superintendent. This comes as White is under fire for not reporting income she made while consulting for an outside firm. WYPR’s John Lee talked it over with Nathan Sterner.

 

John Lee

No high school in Baltimore County is in worse shape than Lansdowne High. The county plans to renovate the school, but State Comptroller Peter Franchot said Lansdowne should get a new school and that isn’t happening because the community isn’t affluent, and doesn’t have much influence. 

 

But Franchot’s motives are being questioned.  

 

Tradepoint Atlantic

Amazon plans to build a distribution center at Sparrows Point in Eastern Baltimore County. It’s expected to open in 2019 and bring with it 1,500 jobs. 

 

Wednesday’s announcement follows months of negotiations between Amazon, the county and the state. Amazon is the latest piece in the redevelopment of the old Bethlehem Steel site by Tradepoint Atlantic.

 

Flickr

 

Baltimore County Schools will be closed next year on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. The Baltimore County School Board last night on a split vote rejected a proposal to keep schools open on the Jewish High Holy Days.

 

John Lee

 

 

 

Since April, more than 40 people who entered the United States illegally have been released from the Baltimore County jail despite requests from the feds to hold them. 

 

Tradepoint Atlantic

 

At an open house hosted by Tradepoint Atlantic at its Sparrows Point headquarters, Tom Hewitt, the Director of Service Development for MTA, laid out for Tammy Reeder plans for a new bus service. Currently, the closest bus stop to Sparrows Point is about three miles away. 

 

dcJohn/flickr

 

Baltimore County students who are poor, African-American or disabled are far more likely to get kicked out of school. That’s according to a new report on behavior and discipline presented last night to the Baltimore County School Board.

John Lee

State Senator Jim Brochin officially launched his campaign Thursday for the county’s top office.

 

Brochin, a four-term state senator, has been plotting this run for a long time. Brochin made his announcement at Towson Manor Park.

 

  

John Lee

Baltimore County came under withering criticism Wednesday from the State Comptroller over the conditions of two of its high schools. Comptroller Peter Franchot called the conditions at Dulaney and Lansdowne High Schools deplorable and unacceptable.

 

Dominique Maria Bonessi

While thousands of people in Baltimore City remain homeless, uninsured, or under insured, one event this week provided a one-stop shop to residents for dental work, vision care, job searching, and more.

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