O’Malley Floats Tax Hike Proposal. Gov. Martin O’Malley on Wednesday offered an alternative to a 15-cent proposed increase in the state’s gas tax.11 News reporter David Collins said it involves raising Maryland’s sales tax by a penny. O’Malley, who mentioned the idea on radio’s Mark Steiner Show, said that raising the sales tax from 6 to 7 percent could help address shortfalls in the state’s operating and transportation budgets.Top aides to O’Malley told Collins the idea will not be included in his budget proposal.
MD Schools Get Top Ranking In National Report. The Maryland public school system ranks first in the nation, according to an independent national report being released Thursday. Education Week, the nation’s leading education newspaper, looked at data in six critical categories over the past four years, and once again found that Maryland’s state education system ranked at the head of the class.
Luke Scott Leaving Orioles; Signs With Rays. Luke Scott is leaving the Baltimore Orioles for the Tampa Bay Rays, according to a published report.MLB.com reported Wednesday afternoon that the 33-year-old Scott signed a one-year deal with Tampa Bay, which won the American League’s wild-card spot in 2011.The Orioles didn’t tender a contract to Scott in December, allowing him to become a free agent. Scott’s 2011 season ended in July when he had shoulder surgery.
Speaker Busch Makes History At General Assembly. Anne Arundel County Delegate Michael Busch is now the longest-serving Speaker of the House in Maryland history.11 News reporter David Collins said Busch will preside over a challenging 2012 legislative session that will include budget problems, expanded gaming and same-sex marriage.The General Assembly session started Wednesday, but Collins said the day was reserved for pomp and circumstance.