IN BRIEF

The Baltimore Sun

No charges for driver in accident that killed teen

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The driver of a car that struck and killed a 14-year bicyclist in Anne Arundel County on Friday night will not be charged because the accident was caused by error on the part of the teenager, police said. Ashley Nicole Meyers of Pasadena was attempting to cross Ritchie Highway near Hamburg Street in Pasadena at 5:47 p.m. when she was struck by a northbound 1999 Nissan Sentra driven by Katherine Marie Brooks, 30, of Dundalk, according to a county police news release. Ashley was attempting to cross the thoroughfare, going west, while northbound traffic on Ritchie Highway was stopped in the right lane for the traffic signal about a quarter-mile ahead, police said. She made her way across the roadway, but cut between two cars in the right-hand lane, where she was hit by Brooks' car, Wheeler said. Police said that area of Ritchie Highway is not "designed, marked or engineered as a pedestrian crossing," Meyers was wearing dark clothing and her bicycle was not equipped with lights, police said. Meyers was taken to Baltimore Washington Medical Center, where she was pronounced dead at 6:25 p.m., police said.

John-John Williams IV

Balto. County's budget increase cap is 4.24%

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Spending by Baltimore County government next year can increase by 4.24 percent at most, a slight drop from this year, according to recommendations released Friday by the Spending Affordability Committee. The panel, chaired by County Councilman Kevin Kamenetz, told County Executive James T. Smith Jr. that general fund base spending should not exceed $1.617 billion in fiscal 2010, which begins July 1. The recommendation is based on the expected growth of personal income in the county, which has declined during the national economic downturn. Although revenues have fallen, officials have said they do not anticipate any cutbacks in service or in the work force. Since the committee's inception in 1991, the county has never adopted a budget that exceeded the panel's recommended limits, officials said.

Mary Gail Hare

Columbia Association president finalists chosen

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Three finalists have emerged from more than 100 applicants seeking to replace Maggie J. Brown as president of the Columbia Association, the homeowners association for the nearly 100,000 residents of the Howard County town. According to a news release Friday, the three are Milton Matthews, 54, chief executive officer of the Reston Association, a homeowners association for the smaller planned community in Virginia; Phil Nelson, city manager of Troy, Mich.; and Rob Goldman, 59, vice president for sports and fitness at the Columbia Association for the past 19 years. Nelson was unavailable for comment Friday. Matthews said he has been at Reston for more than four years, after serving as city manager of Webster Grove, Mo., for more than 14 years. The new president is to take charge May 1.

Larry Carson

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