Does it seem like every time you hear rain falling, you hear a flash flood warning?

Flooding is growing more and more common - and there are a few reasons for that.  A big one is that rain isn’t being absorbed - it falls on rooftops and streets, then gushes through the pipes and bursts into the streams like a fire hose.

The rain flows with such force and such volume that the stream beds erode, leaving even less earth to absorb the water.  The water levels in the Jones Falls, The Gwynns Falls, Herring Run, and the Inner Harbor rise and rise and eventually overflow the banks.

Christopher Connelly/WYPR

Two years ago, Frederick County voted to move to a county executive system. The move reflected the county’s growing population and complexity. On Tuesday, voters will decide who will run that new county government. Exactly how Frederick will continue to grow has become a major issue in the campaign.

Driving down Route 75 in southeastern Frederick, you get a sense of the rural nature of many parts of this county. Farm fields and country homes dot the two-lane country road. But Steve McKay says it’s the epicenter for bad growth policies enacted by the Republican-dominated board of county commissioners.

Christopher Connelly / WYPR

In an effort to maintain their strong Democratic majorities, General Assembly leaders are using campaign "slate" funds to help the lawmakers that are vulnerable in this year's election. WYPR's Karen Hosler and Fraser Smith explain how it works.

Next to Patterson Park’s Victorian style pagoda, a Chihuahua dressed as a ballerina accepted a dog treat from a man dressed as a giant slice of Papa John’s Pizza. This isn’t a new Miley Cyrus music video, but a scene from last weekend’s 10th annual BARCStoberfest. Dozens of vendors, merchandise booths, and animal care facilities set up tables on the south side of Patterson Park for a sunny afternoon of fundraising and light hearted fun. Beside almost every vendor’s candy dish was a matching dish of treats for the four legged friends.

“I’ve already decided my foster dog can have as many treats as she wants today,” one owner said. “No use keeping her from celebrating!”

Team Meade, universities talk partnerships taken by Fort Meade via flickr

The chancellor is stepping down. After 50 years in education, and 12 years as Chancellor of the University System of Maryland, William English “Brit” Kirwan is retiring. He will leave office after his replacement is selected by the Board of Regents.

The search is underway.

During his tenure, Kirwan was hailed for his strategic spending; his “Effectiveness and Efficiency Initiative,” started in 2003-04, has saved the system upwards of $462 million to date. He was also partly responsible for the tuition freezes after the recession. Under him, enrollment in Maryland’s 11 institutions of higher learning increased by 24 percent.

Chris Hsia via flickr

You’d have to go back more than 100 years ago to a time when the atmosphere around college sports in this country was more toxic than they are today.

Christopher Connelly/WYPR


With just days left before Maryland chooses its next governor, both campaigns have shifted into high gear to get out the vote. In Baltimore, the city’s robust political machine is ratcheted up, and that machine belongs to the Democrats.

Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown rallied about four dozen troops in his Baltimore field office on Eutaw Street making calls on his behalf – and told them that the city’s turnout will be part of his pathway to victory. It was one of many trips Brown’s made to the city to drive early voters to the polls. He spent most of Wednesday Baltimore, waving signs and greeting voters. He’s back Thursday morning for more.

Tom Chalkley


It ain't over yet - Maryland's gubernatorial race is giving voters the full end-of-campaign treatment. 

P. Kenneth Burns / WYPR


Community and government transparency advocates have accused Baltimore City officials of moving  to privatize the city’s water system by searching for a consultant to tell them how to run it better.

City officials say it’s not so, but the advocates claim that one of the companies that may, or may not, be involved – Veolia North America – will find a way to take over and cost the city millions of dollars in the process.

Kim Trueheart, a citizen activist, accused the company of trying to profit off water, which she called a human right.

Lt. Governor brings remarks at Civil Rights Commemorative Ceremony at Morgan University taken by mdgovpics via flickr

Next week, Maryland might become the third state ever to elect an African American as its governor, although race has not been a prominent topic in the campaign thus far. WYPR's Fraser Smith and Christopher Connelly talk about the direct overtures that the state Democratic Party has made to black voters in the past week.