Tom Horton: Budgeting for healthy rivers

For centuries, artists, writers, scientists, politicians — even lawyers — have drawn inspiration from the Patuxent River, the Bay’s seventh biggest tributary. Its tidal marshes are portrayed unforgettably in Gilbert Klingel’s classic 1951 book, The Bay; its waters and southern Maryland culture immortalized in the lyrics of singers such as the late Tom Wisner and the Norris brothers, David and Joe. (Star-Democrat)

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Rethink forum on Core

The Carroll County Board of Education should rethink its decision to decline working with the Board of County Commissioners to host a meeting on new Common Core school requirements. Common Core, a set of standards which were developed by educators and experts from across the country, aim to put in place clear national standards for education. They have been adopted by 45 states and the District of Columbia, but as the new requirements are being rolled out, opposition to them has increased, fed in part by a spread of misinformation. (Carroll Co. Times)

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Richard Rothschild: Open forum on Core standards needed

It’s no secret Commissioner Doug Howard and I disagree on Common Core issues, but I’m glad to see there is finally a growing public discourse on this controversial matter. In a recent editorial, the Times quotes Howard’s position, but as usual, fabricates and employs their own biased hyperbole to misrepresent my position. (Carroll Co. Times)

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Spending in secret

Do you want government to meet in secret and decide how to spend your money? Apparently, when it comes to the Board of Frederick County Commissioners, a majority has no objections to doing so. Once again, county attorneys are defending our county leaders for potentially failing to abide by the Maryland Open Meetings Act. This is the second time that four of the commissioners — board President Blaine Young, Kirby Delauter, Billy Shreve and Paul Smith — have appeared to have crossed the line. (News-Post)

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C. Fraser Smith: Feeling lost with new normal 

Ronald Reagan rules from the grave: Government is not the solution, he said. Government is the problem. So, a government shutdown looms. Some say a shutdown, followed by a default on our debt, would mean great peril to our own and to the world’s economy. But wait. Isn’t government already shut down — the part that should be steering us away from a shutdown at least? (Daily Record)

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Raise the minimum wage to $8

What is to be done with the federal minimum wage — stuck at $7.25 an hour since 2009, with no raise in sight? One approach is just that: Stay with the status quo, on the theory that a higher minimum wage is a job-killer. As House Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) has put it, “When you raise the price of employment, guess what happens? You get less of it.” (Wash. Post)

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Back Story: Tugboats are 'workhorses' of the port

They are the handmaidens of the port of Baltimore and the Chesapeake Bay as they scurry to and fro with all manner of arriving and departing ships and barges lashed to them. Their work goes on despite the weather and respects no clock or holiday. Because they work long hours, the five people in a tug crew grow very close. (Balt. Sun)

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Republicans turn the Capitol into "Dog Day Afternoon"

Ever see the Al Pacino movie, "Dog Day Afternoon?" Based on a true story, it's about a bank robbery that goes bad. When it becomes clear that the jig is up — that there's not much money to be had and they're surrounded by police — the list of demands gets truly outrageous, including a limousine to the airport and a jet to fly them out of the country. That appears to be exactly what's happening in the U.S. House of Representatives. Now that it's clear that they're getting nowhere by threatening a government shutdown on Oct. 1 unless Obamacare is defunded, Republicans are looking to shoot the proverbial moon. (Balt. Sun)

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