Good Morning, Baltimore: Need to know for Thursday

Good morning, Baltimore! Someone among us is $2M richer this morning after winning a second-tier prize in last night's Powerball drawing. Meanwhile an Abingdon baby made national news this morning in a photo with Santa broadcast on network television.
Best hold onto your hats today, as gusty winds reach into the mid-30s, under partly sunny skies. Daytime temperatures will reach 40, and will sink to a chilly 31 overnight. There is only a 9 percent chance of precipitation, which means it’s a good day to get the outdoor Christmas lights up or go shopping.
Republican Gov.-elect Larry Hogan picked Craig A. Williams Wednesday to be his chief of staff and state Sen. Joseph Getty of Carroll county to be his policy and legislative director. Both men are veterans of former Republican Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr.’s administration. 
The University of Maryland, College Park, is under a campuswide hiring and construction freeze because of an expected state budget short-fall, President Wallace D. Loh announced Wednesday. 
Riding a bull market, Baltimore’s Fire and Police Retirement System made $313 million from investments in 2014, according to an annual audit that is presented to the Board of Estimates. 
With seafood fraud a continuing problem in Maryland and across the nation, environmentalists, fishermen and lawmakers are expressing concern about a decline in the  number of special investigative agents and enforcement cases at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. 
Republican Rep. Andy Harris re-emerged Wednesday as a leading opponent of legalizing marijuana  after lawmakers included a provision in the $1 trillion federal funding bill that appeared to block the District of Columbia from loosening its pot laws.
Nearly a year after a massive data breach at the University of Maryland, state auditors say the campus network is still vulnerable to hackers.
Rep. Gov.-elect Larry Hogan and Attorney General elect Brian E. Frosh, a Democrat, could clash over stormwater fees and pollution efforts aimed at Eastern Shore poultry farmers.

After months without rain, northern California braces for a large storm, prompting school closures in San Francisco and for state officials to issue the state's first blizzard warning since 2008.

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