Mayor submits names of 2 Ethics Board nominees
Baltimore Mayor Sheila Dixon yesterday submitted the names of two Ethics Board nominees to the City Council for approval. The five-member board has had two vacancies for more than a year, and a third occurred in the end of September when Paul Fenn resigned. That left the board with two members - not enough for a quorum needed to conduct business. The new appointee is former diplomat Alexander Chambers, who teaches at City College and would serve as the required Republican member. The mayor also wants to reappoint Dana Peterson Moore, a senior attorney in the Baltimore office of Venable LLP. If the appointees are confirmed, the board would still have two vacancies but would be able to meet and vote.
Annie Linskey Anti-gambling group to air TV ad on slots referendum
A week before Election Day, anti-gambling forces are launching their first television advertisement, hoping that a last-minute media push will help defeat a referendum to bring slot machine gambling to Maryland. The 30-second spot is to start airing today on Baltimore-area stations, said Scott Arceneaux of Marylanders United to Stop Slots. Legalizing slots will cost millions "in crime, bankruptcy and addiction," the ad's narrator says. A source with the campaign said the anti-slots group plans to spend about $200,000 on airtime between now and the election. The main pro-slots group, For Maryland For Our Future, started airing TV ads this month and has spent more than $1.5 million on radio and TV spots in the Baltimore and Washington markets.
Harford school board OKs budget cuts of $5.3 million
The Harford County school board last night unanimously approved $5.3 million in cuts to its current operating budget, complying with a request from County Executive David R. Craig. As expected, the board was able to make cuts to the $419 million budget without laying off or furloughing anyone. Craig initially asked the school system to cut $10.5 million. The board cut funds from the capital budget, including delaying the acquisition of new vehicles and reducing its professional development budget. "I have to thank the county executive for reducing the amount" that the system needed to cut, said schools Superintendent Jacqueline C. Haas.