BREAKING NEWS: Gov. O’Malley appoints fmr. delegate to D24 seat

Gov. Martin O’Malley has appointed former Prince George’s County Delegate Darren Swain to the House of Delegates. Swain will fill the vacated D24 seat that has been locked in a legal battle after Tiffany Alston was forced to step down last year.

PRESS RELEASE
        
STATEMENT FROM GOVERNOR MARTIN O’MALLEY
ON APPOINTMENT OF DISTRICT 24 DELEGATE

   
ANNAPOLIS, MD (January 25, 2013) – Governor Martin O’Malley issued the following statement on his decision to appoint Darren Swain to the Maryland House of Delegates:

“After careful consideration of a number of very impressive, qualified, and talented candidates, I am pleased to appoint Darren Swain to represent District 24 in the House of Delegates.  

“With experience as a former legislator, support from county and local partners, and his dedication and commitment to moving our State forward, I am confident that Darren Swain will serve the people of Prince George’s County with distinction.

“I thank the Prince George’s County Central Committee and County Executive Rushern Baker for their valuable insights and hard work in filling this important seat in the House of Delegates for the people of the 24th District of Prince George’s County.”

Darren Swain previously served in the House of Delegates, District 24, from 1999 to 2003.  He presently serves as assistant vice president for alumni relations at Bowie State University.  He also served as a business analyst for the Prince George’s County Minority Business Opportunities Commission.  He holds a B.S. in political science and an M.A. in administrative management from Bowie State University.

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PG Democrats to meet, final action expected on vacant D24 seat

The Prince George’s County Democratic Central Committee is expected to meet tonight in what many expect will be their final action to resolve the vacancy around former Delegate Tiffany Alston’s seat.

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Maryland NAACP prepares push on death penalty

ImageThe Maryland Conference of the NAACP is bringing in the big hitters to press Gov. Martin O’Malley and Senate President Michael Miller to finally end the death penalty in the state. 

NAACP, Civil Rights Groups to Call for Death Penalty Abolition in Maryland

 Press Conference January 15, 12:00 noon, at Lawyer’s Mall in Annapolis  

WHO:

National NAACP President and CEO Benjamin Todd Jealous; Maryland NAACP State Conference President Gerald Stansbury; Maryland clergy, legislators and activists.

WHAT:

NAACP leaders will join with leaders of other civil rights and human rights organizations, as well as Maryland clergy, legislators and activists, to call for ending the death penalty in the state of Maryland. A press conference will be held at Lawyer’s Mall outside the Maryland State House on Tuesday, January 15th at noon.

The NAACP has made abolishing capital punishment in Maryland a national priority and is working with several other organizations in the state. Legislative leaders and Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley have said they expect repeal legislation to be approved in the General Assembly this year. 

WHEN/WHERE:

Tuesday, January 15, 12 noon

Lawyer’s Mall

100 State Circle

Annapolis, MD 21401

NOTE: In case of inclement weather, the press conference will take place at another location, which will be announced.

Founded in 1909, the NAACP is the nation’s oldest and largest civil rights organization. Its members throughout the United States and the world are the premier advocates for civil rights in their communities, conducting voter mobilization and monitoring equal opportunity in the public and private sectors. The NAACP is a 501c3 non-partisan organization.

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Governor O’Malley releases comprehensive gun control legislation

Governor O’Malley just released his “comprehensive” response to the school shootings in Newton, CT. Take a look at his proposals and let us know what you think:

Friend,

There’s no easy answer to the complex problem of gun violence. I’ve spent my entire career — as a prosecutor, city councilman, mayor, and now as governor — focused on trying to keep families safe and reduce violent crime. 

We need a comprehensive approach. That’s why in the next few days, I’ll unveil a three-pronged strategy focused on gun safety, school safety and mental health.

1.) Gun safety: We should ban military-style assault weapons, limit large ammunition capacity, and require licenses for handgun purchases. We respect the rights of hunters and sportsmen and that’s why our licensing requirements will NOT apply to shotguns or rifles.

2.) School safety: We will invest in security upgrades for schools, including cameras at entrances, automatically locking doors, shatterproof glass and buzzer entrance systems. We will also establish a “Maryland Center for School Safety,” which will amplify our efforts by gathering meaningful data and serving as a central hub for collaboration between our federal, state and local law enforcement partners. 

3.) Mental heath: We will improve data sharing practices between federal and state officials. In addition, we will invest more to improve mental health services so we can intervene early and reduce the potential for violent behavior. We’ll expand crisis intervention teams, expand response services and establish a center for excellence on early intervention for serious mental illness. 

This is a complex problem and we need a comprehensive approach. I look forward to hearing from you in the days ahead as we work to build a stronger, safer Maryland.  

Thank you,

Martin O’Malley

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MD High Court rules for O’Malley, gives Central Committee power to revoke Hall name

Greg Hall (Photo: Hall's facebook)

Greg Hall (Photo: Hall’s facebook)

The Maryland Court of Appeals ruled yesterday that former Delegate Tiffany Alston’s seat is vacant and can’t get it back despite her plea deal. The court, in a one paragraph ruling, also sided with Governor Martin O’Malley (D) that the Prince George’s County Democratic Central Committee could withdraw their previous nomination of Greg Hall. Following the ruling Tiffany Alston and Greg Hall both slammed the court and said it would damage the potential for local residents to decide their own representation.

Tiffany Alston was removed from her seat after being found guilty for paying her legal assistant through state funds. Alston later entered into a plea agreement for campaign violations after being accused of paying for her wedding dress with campaign funds. The agreement called for community service with the promise of later expunging her record. After Alston’s plea agreement the House of Delegates declared her seat vacant and the Prince George’s County Democratic Central Committee met and nominated Gregg Hall as her replacement. Hall who defeated committee chair Terry Speigner for the nomination later came under fire for a past that included drug charges two decades ago. News of those charges led Governor O’Malley to seek another replacement which initially was refused by the committee.

The Democratic Central Committee is expected to meet soon to formally withdraw Hall’s name. Should they do so O’Malley will be able to fill the vacancy with a choice of his choosing. Rumors about the replacement include former delegate Darrian Swain. Swain is an Assistant Vice President at Bowie State University.

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BREAKING: Anthony Muse booted from Senate Finance Committee to advance O’Malley wind power bill

State Senator C. Anthony Muse

State Senator C. Anthony Muse

For the last two years Governor Martin O’Malley has pushed the General Assembly to pass a wind power bill. That bill has been stalled in the State Senate in the Senate Finance Committee.That could have come to an end today with the announcement that Senate President Mike Miller will remove one of the biggest hurdles to committee approval.  State Senator Anthony C. Muse (D- Prince George’s), who was placed on the Finance Committee after being moved from the Judicial Proceedings Committee to allow for the same-sex marriage bill to pass, will go back to that committee and leave the Finance Committee. In announcing the move Senator Miller said he believed that making that move will allow the bill, which has been locked in committee for years, to finally come to the floor and be discussed by the full body. Miller also said that Muse being on the Judicial Proceedings Committee could help that body finally act on another priority of Governor O’Malley’s, repealing the death penalty. Muse will be replaced by fellow Prince Georgian Victor Ramirez who represents the 47th legislative district.

Read more from the Washington Post.

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Sincere thank you and farewell

On December 12, 2010 a group of Democrats, Republicans, and independents from all over Prince George’s County came together to write a blog about our county by people who live in this county. Over two years we have written about great successes of our county, covered times of concern, and pushed for a better county. This week however that will come to an end. Our Editorial Board has decided to end our publication.

We love this county and as individuals are pumped to continue pushing to make our community better.

Baker and PG political elite to take to media to push Question 7

The leadership of Prince George’s County today will take to their bully pulpit in the hopes of swaying weary county residents about the need to support Question 7 that has struggled in recent polls.

Prince George’s County Executive, County Council Members, Senators, Delegates and Municipal Leaders to Hold Press Conference on Question 7

Upper Marlboro, MD – Prince George’s County Executive Rushern L. Baker. III, will be joined by over 20 elected officials from Prince George’s County including  County Council Members, County Members of the Maryland House of Delegates and State Senate, along with municipal leaders from around the County to discuss Question 7, the expansion of gaming in Maryland ballot referendum today Thursday, October 11, at 6:00 p.m. at the Prince George’s County Administration Building (CAB) in the County Executive’s Office.

WHAT:                 Press conference on Question 7

WHO:                   Prince George’s County Executive Rushern L. Baker, III, Members of the Prince George’s County Council, Members of the House of Delegates from Prince George’s County, Members of the State Senate from Prince George’s County, Prince George’s County Municipal Leaders

WHEN:                 Thursday, October 11, 6:00 p.m.

WHERE:               Prince George’s County Administration Building

County Executive Office, 5th Floor 14741 Governor Oden Bowie Drive Upper Marlboro, MD

 

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Seat Pleasant plans for major groundbreaking

Mayor Eugene W. Grant and the Seat Pleasant City Council will kick off a major ground breaking ceremony tomorrow, Saturday, September 29th from 10AM until 2PM in honor of their new City Center project.

City Center is touted as the largest green project in Maryland. In addition to a LEED-Platinum City Hall, the project includes a health and wellness and recreation center. It also includes a youth training and multipurpose building, residential units for seniors and public gardens.

To kick off a development of this size Mayor Grant has combined the senior political leaders in Maryland with huge celebrities. Governor Martin O’Malley, Lt. Governor Anthony Brown, County Executive Rushern Baker are all expected to join celebrities like Venus Williams, Chrisette Michelle, and Raheem DeVaughn and MC Shela Stewart of Radio-One.

For more information about this event and how to RSVP go to http://seatpleasantcitycenter.org/.

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LATE BREAKING: PGCPS Board of Education terminates CFO and General Counsel

Thursday the Prince George’s County Board of Education moved to fire two holdovers from former superintendent Dr. Hite’s cabinet, CFO Matthew Stanski and Chief Legal Advisor/General Counsel Roger Thomas. According to sources the board was informed that after former HR chief Synthia Shilling resigned her post before facing charges of hitting and running from the scene of an accident in July, Stanski approved a six figure check as severance pay without the approval of the board. The resignations of Stanski and Thomas leave the school system with two more vacancies at a time when the board is struggling to fill roles already left open after Dr. Hite and his deputy Dr. Coleman-Potter departed this summer for other positions. In addition to searching for a new superintendent, deputy superintendent, now CFO, Chief Legal Counsel, and human resources head, the board also has a vacancy in the office of Student Services after the former chief resigned at the end of the summer as well. Oretha Bridgwaters-Simms, who recently retired from the system was named Acting Chief of Student Services. In the Office of the General Counsel alone now two of the four positions are now vacant. “They have to face the music, get from behind the closed door, and inform the public just what they are doing to fill these important posts,” said a source who works for the central office but asked not to be identified.

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