Larry Hogan

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Governor Larry Hogan signed a set of tax relief bills yesterday that were part of his campaign last year.

The Maryland Republican put his signature on a measure that repeals the so-called rain tax or storm water fee.

The Democratically dominated legislature eliminated the fee but still requires local jurisdictions to deal with storm water runoff that is one causes of pollution in the Chesapeake Bay.

The governor also signed a measure that would give veterans over the age of 65 some tax relief.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The U.S. Small Business Administration has approved a Maryland request for a disaster declaration to enable people to apply for low-interest loans to repair damage in Baltimore caused by rioting.

Gov. Larry Hogan announced approval of the disaster declaration on Monday.

About 200 small businesses in Baltimore were affected by the unrest after Freddie Gray suffered a fatal spinal injury in police custody.

State and city officials joined SBA staff last week to assess damage in order to apply for the program.

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After the withdrawal of National Guard units and the extra law enforcement, Maryland Governor Larry Hogan has lifted the state of emergency imposed after a night of rioting followed by a curfew last week.

Over 3,000 Maryland National Guard and 1,000 law enforcement officers were called in to restore order.

The governor said it was not time to rebuild the city as Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake called in the Justice Department to examine police practices that might have led to the unrest.

CVS to Rebuild

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BALTIMORE (AP) - Gov. Larry Hogan has decided to maintain a 2 percent cost-of-living adjustment for state employees.
 
Hogan said Wednesday that $68 million will be made available for the increase in the next fiscal year.
 
The Republican governor says he saw firsthand how committed state employees are to Maryland citizens during last week's handling of unrest in Baltimore. He says state employees need and deserve the pay increase.
 

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Baltimore was shaken last night as looter roamed the streets, smashing windows and beating up one photographer who tried to take their picture.

Maryland Governor Larry Hogan has called in the National Guard and a curfew is being imposed today from 10 p.m. tonight through 5 a.m.

The governor also declared a state of emergency.

A CVS store and a new senior center were burned down as spot fires dotted the city.

Some 15 police are believed to have been injured while around two dozen arrests have been made.

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Hundreds of people marched last night to the Baltimore City Hall to protest the death of 25 year old Freddie Gray who suffered a mysterious spinal injury while apparently in police custody.

This week saw a series of marches which have been largely peaceful.

Once incident caught by CNN showed police taking two demonstrators into custody.

Maryland State troopers were on hand to help commuters and traffic congestion.

Governor Larry Hogan said that he had sent 32 troops to the city at the request of the mayor.

roads.maryland.gov

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The head of the State Highway Administration has resigned to spend more time with her family.

Forty-one-year-old Melinda Peters said Thursday she was leaving the job. She tells The Baltimore Sun that it's time to make her personal life her first priority.

Peters, the first woman administrator of the SHA, was appointed to the post in 2011 by Gov. Martin O'Malley, a Democrat. She tells the Sun that her resignation wasn't related the continuing transition under Republican Gov. Larry Hogan, who took office in January.

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Today is Earth Day.

It was first celebrated in 1970 and turns 45 years old.

On Delmarva much of the attention of environmentalists has centered around restoration of the Chesapeake Bay.

This year began with a new Republican Governor Larry Hogan and some concern by environmentalists about what the future may hold.

Eastern Shore Director Alan Girard with the Chesapeake Bay Foundation told Delmarva Public Radio's Don Rush that he is pleased with the compromises reached with the state's new chief executive.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The "emergency" of heroin and opioid abuse in Maryland is getting attention from state lawmakers and health leaders.

Lt. Gov. Boyd Rutherford's office announced on Thursday that the third of six drug task force summits will be hosted in Calvert County later this month.

Rutherford is the chairman of the Maryland Heroin and Opioid Emergency Task Force, part of Gov. Larry Hogan's initiative to address the rising number of fatal overdoses in the state - which he declared an emergency.

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BALTIMORE (AP) - Maryland Lt. Governor Boyd Rutherford is attending a summit for the Maryland Heroin and Opioid Emergency Task Force.

Rutherford is scheduled to join Baltimore Health Commissioner Dr. Leana Wen on Wednesday in Baltimore.

Rutherford is leading Gov. Larry Hogan's initiative to address the rising rate of fatal overdoses in Maryland. Last month, he attended a task force summit in Elkridge.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Republican Gov. Larry Hogan says he is pleased overall with the way his first legislative session has ended, but he had his share of disagreements with the Democratic-led Legislature.

Lawmakers approved several scaled-back versions of Hogan's priorities, but the governor battled with Democrats over state spending.

Hogan's push to make charter schools more flexible was approved. He also won some tax relief on military pensions for people over 65. With help from Democrats, he also fulfilled a campaign promise to end state-mandated stormwater fees.

Don Rush

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - State-mandated stormwater fees would end under a bill headed to Gov. Larry Hogan's desk.

The House voted 138-1 to the bill Monday night, and the Senate unanimously approved some changes by the House.

Critics have described the 2012 law as a "rain tax." While the bill ends state-mandated fees, it still requires local officials to prove they can pay to meet federal requirements to clean up polluted stormwater.

Don Rush

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The Maryland General Assembly has approved a bill to bring back a voluntary check off on individual income tax returns for public campaign financing for governor.

The House agreed with changes made by the Senate Monday night on a 102-36 vote.

The original check off was repealed in 2010.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Gov. Larry Hogan's charter school expansion bill is heading back to his desk looking dramatically different.

On Monday the Republican governor's charter bill passed the General Assembly with amendments that give some additional flexibility to charter schools, but keeps much of the authority for applications and operations at the local board level.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - A Maryland funding formula that sends more money to parts of the state where education is more expensive would have to be fully funded in the budget for the next fiscal year, or else it would have to be fully funded the following year.

The Legislature passed the bill late Monday night.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The amount of film tax credits for producers of movies and television shows in Maryland will be determined by the governor, under a bill that has cleared the Maryland General Assembly.

The House of Delegates voted 86-51 for the measure on Monday, sending it to Gov. Larry Hogan.

Late last year, the state's Department of Legislative Services recommended in a report that the program should end, because vying for film projects can become competitive and also unpredictable for states.

mdleg.maryland.gov

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Maryland Democrats are standing firm in a budget standoff with Republican Gov. Larry Hogan.

The Senate president and House speaker held a news conference Monday morning on the last day of the session to say they will not back down on fully funding education, health programs and a cost-of-living adjustment for state employees in the budget both chambers already have passed.

Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller says Democrats "cannot pick and choose" who to cut between state employees, vulnerable adults and public school children.

msa.maryland.gov

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - It's crunch time for the Maryland General Assembly, and lawmakers still have a budget to pass.

The 90-day legislative session is scheduled to end Monday at midnight.

Gov. Larry Hogan proposed a budget compromise on Saturday, but it's unclear if the Legislature is willing and able to pass some of Hogan's legislative initiatives that the governor says are important to the deal.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - It would no longer be a crime to possess marijuana-related paraphernalia in Maryland, under a bill approved by the Maryland General Assembly.

The House of Delegates voted 84-52 on Saturday for the Senate bill, sending it to Gov. Larry Hogan.

Maryland decriminalized possession of less than 10 grams of marijuana last year. That made it a civil offense rather than a criminal one.

However, lawmakers didn't do the same thing for paraphernalia like pipes, so the bill was introduced this session.

governor's office

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The Maryland General Assembly has passed a measure to require private donations for inaugural festivities for the governor to be publicly disclosed.

The Senate voted 45-0 on Saturday for the bill, sending it to Gov. Larry Hogan.

An inaugural committee could not be able to receive or disburse money unless it files a statement of organization with the Maryland State Board of Elections and names a treasurer.

The treasurer would be required to file reports that show donations and disbursements of donated money.

msa.maryland.gov

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Gov. Larry Hogan's charter school bill is advancing in the House of Delegates.

On Thursday the House education subcommittee voted 10-1 to move the measure to a vote by the full Ways and Means Committee.

The bill came to the House heavily amended by the Senate. In an interview with The Associated Press, Hogan said the changes "gutted" his bill.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The president of a teachers union is urging Maryland lawmakers to reject a tax-credit backed by Republican Gov. Larry Hogan for businesses that support students who attend private schools.
 
Betty Weller, president of the Maryland State Education Association, said Wednesday lawmakers should reject what she described as a "voucher scheme," whether or not Hogan "chooses to shortchange Maryland and its schools."
 

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - A bill establishing deadlines for the adoption and implementation of fracking regulations is making its way through the General Assembly.

Maryland Senators on Tuesday voted 45-2 in favor of a House version of the bill, which also stops the issuing of hydraulic fracturing drilling permits until October 2017.

The Senate approved its own version of the bill on Monday night, also in a 45-2 vote.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Maryland Senate and House negotiators are scheduled to meet to reconcile budget differences.

The panel is planning to meet Tuesday afternoon.

Del. Maggie McIntosh, who is on the negotiating team, says the House and Senate are very close to resolving differences in the Democratic-led Legislature. However, she says they need to bring Republican Gov. Larry Hogan into the conversation.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The Maryland Senate is giving good marks to Gov. Larry Hogan's charter school bill.

On Monday, the Senate voted 46-1 in support of the amended bill, which some lawmakers called a "balanced approach" to the governor's initiative.

In an interview on Monday with The Associated Press, Hogan said the amendments "basically gutted" his bill.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan is planning an economic development trip to Asia this spring.

Hogan said in an interview Monday with The Associated Press that he is planning the trip to South Korea, China and Japan at the end of May or early June.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Bills giving law-breakers a chance to get back on their feet are making progress in the Maryland General Assembly - and with bipartisan support.

The legislation ranges from removing certain mandatory minimum sentences to restoring voting rights to ex-offenders once they leave prison.

Even Gov. Larry Hogan has publicly backed one bill that would shield certain non-violent offenses from the public eye.

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Maryland Governor Larry Hogan has proposed a $5.2 million tax relief package for military and first responder pensions in his supplemental budget.

In addition, there is a $7.4 million proposal to eliminate personal property taxes on businesses that have less than $10-thousand in personal property.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that the supplemental plan has drawn criticism from the Maryland State Education Association for not including the $70 million that was cut from Hogan’s original budget.

Don Rush

The Executive Director of the Maryland Public School Construction Program David Lever says simply renovating the West Salisbury Elementary school is not an option.

The Salisbury Daily Times obtained a letter from Lever under and Freedom of Information Request in which he says that the current situation does not represent a safe environment for students in case of fire.

In addition, the state official says that the design of the school also has problems if there is an active shooting as well as accessibility for the disabled.

Governor's Office

UPPER MARLBORO, Md. (AP) - Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan is adding his voice to the growing rally against bullying.

On Thursday, Hogan is visiting Six Flags America in Prince George's County, where he will speak to about 200 local public school students on the importance of standing up to bullying.

Erin Montgomery, spokeswoman for the governor, said the severity of bullying has increased throughout the years, as social media have developed new ways for someone to be bullied.

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