Good morning, Baltimore: Need to know for Wednesday

Good morning, Baltimore: Need to know for Wednesday
U.S. President Barack Obama delivers remarks next to Vice President Joe Biden after the House of Representatives acted on legislation intended to avoid the "fiscal cliff." (Jonathan Ernst, Reuters)

WEATHER: Sunny, with highs in the mid-30s and sub-freezing wind chills.

TRAFFIC: Check our traffic updates for this morning's issues.



'Fiscal cliff' deal approved, avoiding tax increases and spending cuts: A bipartisan plan to avoid federal spending reductions and tax increases that would have hit Maryland especially hard won final approval Tuesday night in the House of Representatives even as outside groups warned that the bill would simply delay difficult decisions for a few months.

City killings up to 217 as gun violence falls: Baltimore recorded 217 killings in 2012, about 10 percent more than the 197 in 2011, but still the second-lowest homicide rate since the late 1980s.
Pizza delivery driver says self-defense on job got him demoted: When a group of boys surrounded pizza delivery driver Sam Swicegood, he said he fended them off by swinging a fiberglass stake at them. Then, he said, Pizza Hut corporate management told him that he had violated the company's no-weapons policy for drivers and was being reassigned.

Energy initiative helps reduce utility costs, hospital visits: A "green and healthy homes" initiative for low- and moderate-income property owners in Baltimore assists homeowners with upgrading residences in ways that cut energy expenses and create healthier places to live.

Seven same-sex couples wed at City Hall on New Year's morning: Retired Gen. H. Norman Schwarzkopf, who topped an illustrious military career by commanding the U.S.-led international coalition that drove Saddam Hussein's forces out of Kuwait in 1991, died Thursday. He was 78.


RAVENS: Columnist Mike Preston writes that coach John Harbaugh "will not have real control of this team until players like Ray Lewis, Ed Reed, and Anquan Boldin are no longer on the roster."

TERPS: Maryland coach Mark Turgeon liberally used his bench — one of Maryland's deepest in years — in an 81-63, New Year's Day victory over IUPUI to wrap up the Terps' nonconference schedule. It was Maryland's 12th straight victory.


Z on TV: On Fox News, first-string anchors, reporters and analysts were going all out trying to cover the fiscal cliff maneuverings in Washington, while CNN brought us Anderson Cooper and Kathy Griffin up in a tree.