Baltimore Metro

  Seventeen people are hard at work at a job site in the 2300 and 2400 blocks of E. Eager Street in Milton-Montford.  The site is right next to the Amtrak line and can be seen by train passengers.  The workers are salvaging what they can of the wood, brick and metal from one of the 35 houses being torn down.

At a table nearby, six people are chiseling mortar off bricks and setting them on a pallet.  The bricks will be sold to contractors along the Eastern Seaboard and Gulf Coast.

P. Kenneth Burns / WYPR

It could have waited.

A hands-free cell phone call seconds before a truck driver was hit by a freight train as his truck was crossing the tracks is being cited as the main cause of last year’s derailment and explosion in Baltimore County.

A can of Natty Boh taken by James Cridland via flickr

After a scathing state audit in 2013, the Baltimore City's liquor board has new leadership and has made decisions to kill some "zombie licenses." But as Fern Shen of the Baltimore Brew tells WYPR's Fraser Smith, the jury is still out on whether community groups will get what they want out of the new board.

P. Kenneth Burns / WYPR

Maryland Democrats trained some of their biggest guns, from U.S. Rep. Donna Edwards to House Speaker Michael Busch to two Annapolis Aldermen, on one Republican County Council candidate Tuesday.

They staged a news conference at the State House to urge the residents of Anne Arundel’s District 5 to vote against Michael Anthony Peroutka.

P. Kenneth Burns / WYPR

Democrat George Johnson, who is making a second run for Anne Arundel County Executive, and his Republican opponent, Delegate Steve Schuh, have something in common. They’ve made friends on both sides of the aisle during their years in public life.

But they have sharp differences when it comes to running Anne Arundel.

Kyle Leslie, Matt Purdy / WYPR

On Tuesday, Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake and Police Commissioner Anthony Batts released a plan to reform the police department in the wake of a Baltimore Sun investigation into alleged police brutality. WYPR's Fraser Smith and Mark Puente of The Sun talk about the plan, an announced federal investigation and resistance from the local branch of the Fraternal Order of Police.

African Penguins aka Black-footed Penguin (Spheniscus demersus) by warriorwoman531 via flickr

With full page ads in City Paper and adorable commercials across the local channels it’d be  hard to find someone unaware of The Maryland Zoo opening its new African Penguin exhibit, Penguin Coast lastmonth. The exhibit, which mimics the South African Coast, complete with a small island and fishing camp, is one of the first attractions patrons see when they enter the park.

Howard County Library System via flickr

Howard County, Maryland, seems to have it all: a semi-urban, semi-rural suburb of both Baltimore and Washington that repeatedly scores near the top of national rankings for income, public schools and overall quality of life. And now competing for the county’s top political job is an impressive duo:  a liberal yet pro-business Democrat and a tight-fisted Republican, who’s also a leading civil rights advocate.

P. Kenneth Burns / WYPR

Eric Costello was easily confirmed Monday by the Baltimore City Council to represent the 11th district in spite of objections from some of his neighbors and a call for a “re-do” of the nominating process by nine other candidates for the seat.

P. Kenneth Burns/WYPR

When it meets Monday, the Baltimore City Council is expected to confirm Eric Costello to fill the seat representing the 11th District -- which covers parts of south and west Baltimore, including downtown.

Costello would finish the term of Bill Cole, who left the Council earlier this year to head the Baltimore Development Corporation.