Let’s get this road on the road

As author Erica Jong once wrote: “Advice is what we ask for when we already know the answer but wish we didn’t.” The same might be said for traffic studies, especially traffic studies of U.S. 15 through the city of Frederick. The State Highway Administration recently briefed local officials on the latest preliminary study of this dangerous, traffic-clogged road, from Interstate 70 to Md. 26. The news was not encouraging. The preliminary study concluded the road is badly congested, especially at rush hours in the morning and evening. Well, that’s a shocker! Now, SHA is pondering what can be done, and more importantly, when. (News-Post)

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May 9 // Hogan, Maryland should join U.S. Climate Alliance

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan needs to make a decision: Join other states in the newly formed U.S. Climate Alliance opposing the decision to exit the Paris Agreement or continue to remain silent on President Donald Trump's actions. Hogan, a Republican, was critical of Trump during the campaign and didn't vote for the president, but since Trump won the White House, he has avoiding taking a stance on nearly every controversial decision the president has made. For the most part, we've appreciated Hogan's insistence on focusing on Maryland while avoiding becoming embroiled in the partisan warfare in Washington, D.C. (Carr. Co. Times)

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Michael Collins: McMillan's the joker in District 30 deck

Election Day 2018 is about 18 months away, but the race for the District 30 state Senate seat is already getting interesting. On its face, it's a pretty straightforward affair. Democrat John Astle has held the seat since 1995 — and probably would have been re-elected. But he now is running for mayor of Annapolis, and if he wins he'll be required to vacate the seat. But there's a joker in this particular deck who could change this race's status from interesting to downright entertaining: Del. Herb McMillan. (Capital)

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Ocean drilling remains a bad bet for the bay

Late last year the Obama administration banned offshore oil and gas drilling on millions of acres in the Arctic and Atlantic oceans, including areas near the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay. In this space, we welcomed the decision but added that, in light of the recent presidential election, it might be "no more than a sand castle fated to be washed away by the incoming tide." Sometimes being prescient is no fun. (Capital)

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Davin Hong: Asphalt arteries cut off communities from Druid Hill Park

Baltimore's Druid Hill Park ranks with distinction among a very short list of large historic urban parks in America. With a pastoral landscape, picturesque reservoir and even the Maryland Zoo, it is a popular destination for not only Baltimore residents but also for visitors from the surrounding region. Yet somehow, its bordering neighborhoods have not benefited from being next to such a landmark amenity. They have not thrived as sought-after communities and are instead deserts to recreation, greenery and quality of life. (Balt. Sun)

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Has to be done

It seems inevitable that a 9.75 percent property tax increase will be imposed upon Cumberland’s residents on June 20.  Although we agree with Mayor Brian Grim and four of the five City Council members that it is necessary, we’re not cheering. The city has a major financial problem, and it has to be faced now. (Times-News)

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June 8 // Brown's right about the disease, not the cure

U.S. Rep. Anthony Brown has a morale-boosting suggestion for Republicans depressed about the way they are treated in Annapolis: They can go to Capitol Hill and talk to Democrats about their treatment in a GOP-dominated Congress. Brown, who stopped by the Capital Gazette offices earlier this week, has a better perspective on this than many freshmen Democrats. He knows what it's like to be in the government driver's seat. He was a delegate from Prince George's County for eight years, followed by eight years as Gov. Martin O'Malley's lieutenant governor. He now represents the 4th District, which is dominated by Prince George's voters but also includes a large swath of central and northern Anne Arundel. (Capital)

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Government by the people

In government, there is the will of the voters, such as when Howard County last fall approved Question A on the local ballot. It's a charter amendment authorizing public financing of the campaigns of candidates for county executive and county council. But then there is also the will of politically minded elected official, and that might be best represented by Howard County Executive Allan Kittleman's promise to veto legislation that puts that that charter amendment into action by the 2022 election. The county executive's reason for the veto? Because the legislation allows taxpayer dollars to be spent on political campaigns. (Balt. Sun)

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