Political news

taken at CPAC 2013 by Gage Skidmore via flickr

Last month, voters in the District of Columbia approved a referendum that allowed residents to possess up to two ounces of marijuana and grow as many as three cannabis plants. But Maryland Rep. Andy Harris (R-Baltimore Co.) has continued his opposition to pot legalization in the nation's capital. WYPR's Fraser Smith talks to Washington Post reporter Aaron Davis about efforts by Harris to block legalization in D.C. and why the issue is likely to end up in court.

Gov.-elect Larry Hogan briefed reporters on the state’s fiscal situation yesterday afternoon and the picture he painted was dire. Maryland’s next governor says the state needs ‘strong medicine’ to fix its fiscal health after years of bad budgeting.

“Let me put it in everyday terms: They drained our checking, savings and retirement accounts. They maxed out every credit card. They tapped into Christmas funds, college tuition funds,  they even broke into every one of the kids piggy banks, and we still don’t have enough to pay the bills," Hogan said.

Christopher Connelly / WYPR

Senate President Mike Miller said last week that a massive rollback of state taxes and fees is not likely. WYPR's Fraser Smith and Bryan Sears of the Daily Record talk about what kind of relationship the Calvert County Democrat may have with Gov.-elect Larry Hogan (R) and why a bigger question might be how the House of Delegates might react to proposed compromises.

Governor tours the Veep Set by Jay Baker, MDGovpics via flickr

Maryland's film tax credits, enjoyed by local television productions like 'House of Cards,' was called "significantly more generous than other business tax incentives" by an analyst at the Department of Legislative Services. WYPR's Fraser Smith and Erin Cox of the Baltimore Sun talk about the debate over the tax credits and why Gov.-elect Larry Hogan has not indicated whether he'll work  to end or reduce them.

John Lee / WYPR

Baltimore County Council added three new members today, as the seven-member board was sworn in before hundreds of people at the SECU Arena at Towson University. County Executive Kevin Kamenetz also took his oath of office for a second term.

In his inaugural address, Kamenetz said inclusion needs to be part of the vision for the county's future. Kamenetz cited cities and nations that are being ripped apart by intolerance and misunderstanding. "Baltimore County must be a place where people with diverse backgrounds and beliefs feel comfortable living together and working together," Kamenetz said. "We must nurture an environment where discourse is passionate, but always civil and constructive."

John Lee / WYPR

The big Republican wins in the November election have led lawmakers in Baltimore and Annapolis to look toward rolling back the stormwater remediation fees imposed after the 2012 General Assembly session. The fees have been derided by opponents as a “rain tax.”

Christopher Connelly/WYPR

When the Maryland General Assembly starts its session in January, it will be dealing with a new governor from a different party and about a third of its members will be freshmen.  Between a Republican governor and a host of more left-leaning Democrats coming in, the next four years bear the signs of a more partisan landscape in Annapolis.

Christopher Connelly / WYPR

Governor-elect Larry Hogan (R) has assembled a transition team and one prominent member is former State Sen. and Anne Arundel County Executive Bobby Neall.  WYPR's Fraser Smith and Karen Hosler talk about what this decision says about how Hogan might lead in Annapolis.

Was Larry Hogan the only upset?  Were there other Republican wins in Maryland this week? Andy Green, from Baltimore Sun's Editorial page, talks to Fraser about the other big winners in this week's general election. 

Christopher Connelly / WYPR

Within days after last June’s primary, pollsters had written off Republican Larry Hogan in his race against Lt. Governor Anthony Brown. But somehow, Hogan pulled off a stunning upset, capturing more than 51 percent of the vote for governor in one of the bluest states in the nation.