Md. get some control of city schools
A federal judge gave state education officials control over a sizable portion of the Baltimore school system, pointing to what he called a long-standing failure to provide services for thousands of disabled students. The emergency order is the latest development in the politically charged issue over how to run city schools, and it marks another sharp turn in a lawsuit that is more than two decades old.
Ex-commissioner Norris returning
Former Police Commissioner Edward T. Norris is returning to Baltimore tomorrow to begin performing 500 hours of court-mandated community service -- the last stage of the sentence he received after pleading guilty to federal public corruption and tax charges stemming from his time at the helm of the city force. Norris said he will do part of his work at Catholic Charities. He also will serve as a host of WHFS 105.7's Ed Norris with Big O & Dukes radio talk show.
Hotel proposal gains support
Mayor Martin OMalley's administration secured enough support to comfortably push a publicly financed convention center hotel through its next City Council vote by steering more money toward community revitalization programs, including two neighborhood centers in one council member's district. Two council members said that the behind-the-scenes negotiations persuaded them to support the plan to build a Hilton hotel next to the Baltimore Convention Center. Their commitments will secure a 9-6 majority for preliminary passage tomorrow. Final votes will be taken next month.
Home construction up in Baltimore
After decades of lagging behind the suburbs, Baltimore has become a hot spot for new-home construction. More than 7,000 homes in major projects are in a planning pipeline that seems to swell every day as developers scramble to assemble tracts of land.
State proposes new roundabout
Maryland highway officials are proposing the largest roundabout in the state at a troublesome Baltimore County crossroads, Route 702 and Hyde Park Road in Essex. If completed, the $2 million venture would be the state's 41st circular intersection built in the past decade.
District Court chief retires
Martha F. Rasin, 58, retired after spending 16 years as a District Court judge, mostly on the bench in Annapolis but including five years as the chief of the state District Court system. Rasin earned a reputation for being people- and detail-oriented, as a judge and administrator, according to many of those who have worked with her. She was relentless in her push for an amendment to the state constitution allowing around-the-clock availability of emergency protective orders. Voters approved the measure by a 7 to 1 margin in 2002.
Arrested man linked to terror list
A Pakistani man was charged with selling fake immigration documents after being picked up during a routine traffic stop in Baltimore County. When police checked his name, he turned up on a terrorism-related database, according to federal officials. The arrest marked the second time in less than a week that federal authorities detained suspects from the Baltimore region as part of their anti-terrorism efforts.
Port wants surveillance cameras
The port of Baltimore is asking the state Board of Public Works to approve a $5.5 million contract to design and install a camera system that would allow security officials to remotely monitor the port's fences, terminals, gates and piers.