Christopher Connelly

Reporter

Christopher Connelly is a political reporter for WYPR, covering the day-to-day movement and machinations in Annapolis. He comes to WYPR from NPR, where he was a Joan B. Kroc Fellow, produced for weekend All Things Considered and worked as a rundown editor for All Things Considered. Chris has a master’s degree in journalism from UC Berkeley. He’s reported for KALW (San Francisco), KUSP (Santa Cruz, Calif.) and KJZZ (Phoenix), and worked at StoryCorps in Brooklyn, N.Y. He’s filed stories on a range of topics, from a shortage of dog blood in canine blood banks to heroin addicts in Tanzania. He got his start in public radio at WYSO in Yellow Springs, Ohio, when he was a student at Antioch College.

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Christopher Connelly/WYPR

There are just more than two weeks until the end of the legislative session in Annapolis. News Director Joel McCord talked to WYPR’s Christopher Connelly about some of the big items in the state house this week. 

Christopher Connelly/WYPR

The two chambers of the Maryland General Assembly took up and passed separate bills related to the controversial drilling technique known as hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, on Tuesday. One would put a moratorium on fracking until a panel can study the potential public health consequences. The other sets strict standards to hold gas drillers accountable if those consequences occur.

Christopher Connelly/WYPR

Gov. Larry Hogan and the state’s Congressional delegation met Monday morning to discuss Maryland’s federal priorities, and bringing the new FBI headquarters to Maryland was at the top of the list. The project, with its 11,500 jobs, seemed enough to overcome any partisan differences between Maryland’s mostly Democratic congressional delegation and its Republican governor.

The legislative session in Annapolis is moving full speed toward Sine Die – that’s the last day the General Assembly can pass bills for the year. WYPR News Director Joel McCord caught up with Annapolis reporter Christopher Connelly for an update.

WYPR's Statehouse Reporter Chris Connelly says Assembly Republicans are nearly eup0horic as they work on Gov. Larry Hogan’s budget. Thought amended and re-arranged by House Democrats, they believe the spending plan would have been much more expensive had a Democrat been in the governor’s office. The document will be approved or amended when it goes to the state senate.  

The Maryland Senate gave preliminary approval to a bill that would modify the state’s stormwater management fee moved forward on Thursday. If passed, it could end a long-simmering controversy over the so-called “rain tax.”

Gov. Larry Hogan made repealing a requirement that Baltimore City and the nine biggest counties charge a fee to fund efforts to stop dirty stormwater from running into the bay a lynchpin of his campaign. But the Senate Education, Health and Environmental Affairs committee killed his effort.

Christopher Connelly/WYPR

The Democratic-led House of Delegates gave its preliminary approval to Republican Gov. Larry Hogan's budget Wednesday. The version passed by the lower chamber departs significantly from Hogan’s plan, beefing up spending on schools, safety net programs and state worker pay.

Christopher Connelly / WYPR

Even with the price of oil slowly inching up, gas prices at the pump are still some of the lowest we’ve seen in years. But whatever it costs to fill up your tank, in Annapolis there’s a debate simmering over how much the state should add to the gas tax.

Joe Getty used to be a senator on the state’s budget and tax committee. These days, though, he’s Governor Larry Hogan’s legislative director. The Carroll County Republican went back to his old committee this week to make the case for a key piece of his boss’s agenda: Stop the state’s gas tax from going up.

Five states allow physicians to help terminally ill patients end their lives. Now, the Maryland General Assembly is considering legalizing the practice here. Supporters call it death with dignity. Opponents say it’s physician-assisted suicide.

Christopher Connelly/WYPR

  

Gov. Larry Hogan’s education platform will face its first big test today when a House of Delegates committee will take up his plan to reform Maryland’s strict charter school law.  Although some Democratic lawmakers have signaled interest in seeing a reform to Maryland’s strict charter law, many say the bill goes too far. Public schools advocates say the bill is a giveaway to national charter operators.

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