June 14, 2024
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May 18, 2022 | Daily News Brief | Fiscal Warning For Annapolis. Scooters and Bikes. New COVID Plan For Schools.

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The City’s Financial Advisory Commission says the City is in danger of not being able to pay its bills. We learned more about the Birds and other mobility options in Annapolis. Anne Arundel County Schools are looking into a new COVID masking and testing policy for the last few weeks of the year. The Rotary and a very few politicians and candidates work together for a community project. Last chance to get tickets to Feeding Hope on Thursday. And some pod news as always!

Back with her weekly Annapolis After Dark is BeeprBuzz. She’ll keep you up to speed on all of the fantastic live music we have in the area!

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Good morning, it is Wednesday, May 18th,  2022 and THIS is your Eye On Annapolis Daily News Brief.

Hopefully, George can straighten this out. Maryland weather is so bipolar… high of 70 today, 82 on Thursday, 84 on Friday, 90 on Saturday, 85 on Sunday, and then topping out at 65 on Monday.  Grrr… and yesterday I mentioned that the Sugarhill Gang is coming to Rams Head ..well I am inexplicably excited for this show on November 25th–black Friday…so here’s your earworm for the day!


OK, let’s get into today’s news, shall we?

Brooks DuBose has an alarming article in The Capital that all Annapolitans need to read. Read it now and get upset now–not later when all we can do is say, “I told you so.” The City’s Financial Advisory Commission has issued a report that essentially says that they believe the City will be unable to pay its bills in two years and suggests steps be taken now. Mayor Buckley submitted a $170 million budget … for reference final budget of the Pantelides administration was just under $108 million. … but Buckley’s budget is shored up by the federal American Rescue Plan Act funds–the city has $7.6 million unspent.  Jodee Dickinson, the City’s Finance Director, disagrees and says we are better off now than four years ago. However, she also told The Capital, ” We do have a timeframe here where in two years, we’re going to have to consider other revenue sources and whether that means a tax increase or looking for another source of revenue. That is what it’ll take. And the Council will be making that decision.” So, on one hand, she is saying all is good. And the other saying in two years, expect a tax increase. So, my advice–keep an eye on this issue. I know it is wonky and boring, but those are the ones that usually burn us in the end!

Yesterday, as expected, the Mayor and a bunch of politicians showed up at the Eastport Shopping Center to hear about the new mobility options. We did not learn too much more but picked up a few things…but first, to recap, there will be electric scooters and bikes. There will be a uber type ride share. There will be a golf cart circulator. And there will be a larger mini-bus circulator all to help out the parking crunch.  What we learned, there will be 50 scooters and 50 bicycles placed around the City today. Download the Bird app on your phone and create an account, and wherever you find a scooter or a bike, you scan the thing and charge a credit card, and off you go. They will be geofenced to the city limits, so you cannot take it to Glen Burnie. They also will be speed-controlled, so if you are going down West Street to Parole, you can go faster than on the sidewalk on Main Street.  Bird has people that will pick them up at night, charge them and re-distribute them. I am not sure of the cost.  They suggest helmets and will send you a free one through the app–but let’s be real; no one is walking around with a helmet on the off chance they want to take a scooter or bike.  The Annapolis GO ride share. It is $2 per trip and $1 for additional people. It is a very limited service area, and it can stop and pick up other people along the way.  I tried the app, and I live in Ward 7 and am out of the service area. Wards 3, 4, and 5 are also mostly out of the area as well. The other option is the golf carts…they are open-air, eight-seat, making two continuous loops on the side and minor streets and alleys. Flag them down and hop on. It is free, and they will serve Inner West Street, Calvert Street, the garages back there, the State House, Maryland Avenue, and City Dock.  The Mayor did say the second loop may be implemented to go to Eastport and the shopping center.  So there you go. All of that is in place beginning today. And if you use a scooter–please be careful and be responsible!

We mentioned COVID was an issue at some schools. At today’s school board meeting, they will discuss how to handle it moving into the final few weeks of the school year. They are proposing a mask requirement for the schools once they hit the 5% positivity rate, which will last for 10 days.  They also will give out tests to everyone at a school that is 5% or over…one test on the day after the school hits the 5% and the other 3 days later. Regardless of the test, positive tests or any symptoms will be required to stay home. If you want to testify on this new policy..sign up by 10 am today on the AACPS.org website, and beware, they will only allow 10 people to testify.

Sort of an interesting and feel-good story. The Annapolis Rotary did a community clean u at Langton Green Community Farm in Millersville. Since it was a community farm and a community project, they invited all current officeholders and all candidates running for office to throw aside partisanship and come together for the community. A fabulous idea. 30 Rotarians and their families and friends showed up to build an outdoor stage. And of all the politicians on the State, County, and City level—six showed up.  Delegate Mark Chang, County Council Candidate Pete Smith, County Executive Candidate Chris Jahn, County Council Candidate Noel Smith, and District 6 County Councilwoman Lisa Rodvien and her Republican Challenger and Former Annapolis Mayor Mike Pantelides. So, my suggestion when you head to the ballot box–remember who is working for the community and ask why the others could not find a way to spend a few hours on this project!

And today is the final day to grab a ticket to Feeding Hope. This is a fun fundraiser at Homestead Gardens to raise money for the Anne Arundel County Food Bank. Music, food, and drink all in a great atmosphere for a great cause! Tickets are $50, and you can get them at aafoodbank.org

OK, and that’s a wrap on the news!  If you didn’t catch it at noon yesterday..be sure to check out the bonus pod with Jeremy Browning as we chat about Annapolis Pride and the fantastic parade and festival coming up on June 4th–spoiler–Clerk of the Courts Scott Poyer will be marrying people at the fest–how cool is that?  And for our Local Business Spotlight on Saturday, Sailor Dog and Pet Care, and up next weekend… Royal Jewelers

OK, that’s it for the news, but first, a quick thank you our sponsors for this Daily News Brief– Solar Energy Services, the Kristi Neidhardt Team of Northrop Realty, a Long and Foster Company, and the Alpha Engineering!

OK, so now, hang tight; George Young from DCMDVA Weather is standing by with your locally forecast weather report. And of course, we have Bridgett aka Beepr Buzz, with all your music news in Annapolis After Dark!   All that in just a bit!

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