Daily "Recent Prince George's County News" updates were suspended in early March 2016. They were compiled primarily from retweets of news headlines. Those retweets continue, but in unformatted and unarchived form at PG-Politics-Briefs. To follow such headlines on a current basis, follow @pgpolitics on Twitter.

Monday, January 23, 2006

News Briefs (Monday)

(Posted 23 Jan 2006)
  • Miller's words fire up rivals.
    • Times, 23 Jan 2006 (by Jon Ward, The Washington Times).
    On the second floor of the Maryland State House, a sheet of paper hangs on each of the 13 doors to Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr.'s staff offices.

    Printed on the paper is a quote from Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller Jr., a Democrat who represents Prince George's and Calvert counties.

    "GOP leaders 'are going to be flying high, but we're going to get together and we're going to shoot them down. We're going to bury them face down in the ground, and it'll be 10 years before they crawl out again,' " the quote reads.
    [. . .]
    Sen. Gloria Lawlah, Prince George's Democrat, said she agrees with Mr. Ehrlich's decision to keep Mr. Miller's quote displayed on the doors.

    "When you're in a contest, if I'm Coach Ehrlich, I'm going to use everything I can to fire my team up, to put fire in their belly," she said. "I'd do that, too ... The Democrats miss the second floor. The whole thing is about the second floor."
    [. . .].
  • Bill targets strip club loophole; Legislation would make BYOB policies a misdemeanor
    State lawmakers in Prince George's County are taking aim at adult entertainment businesses by attempting to close a loophole that allows many strip clubs to avoid regulation. . . .

    Del. Justin Ross, who has proposed making BYOB policies a misdemeanor for all commercial businesses, pointed to Stardust in New Carrollton as an example. After three homicides at the strip club a few years ago, its liquor license was revoked.

    "So what do they do? They just open up the next day as BYOB," Ross said. "Then you have the same problem - just worse."
    [. . .]
    "The county has been very slow in moving on this," said Sen. Nathaniel Exum, who has also proposed outlawing BYOB policies at adult entertainment businesses.

    Exum's bill would zero in on strip clubs, but Ross said he included all businesses to prevent clubs from finding another loophole in the law.

    "Frankly, this bill should have been passed 20 years ago," Ross said.

    Nearly a dozen counties in Maryland already have laws on the books that prohibit BYOB policies, Ross added.

    The County Council is considering whether to propose legislation to shut down strip clubs in Prince George's after receiving the results of a study on thelink between such clubs and crime.

    Other cities and counties have been able to ban strip clubs by linking them to an increase in crime - a precedent Council Chairman Thomas Dernoga, D-Laurel, said the council may put to use.

    BYOB ban penalties
    • Ross' proposal would levy a $1,000 fine on any business that violates the BYOB ban.
    • Exum wants to impose a $10,000 fine on a strip club that violates the ban.
    • Exum's plan also would carry a potential prison sentence of up to two years..
  • Moving on up; Prince George's County striking it rich.
  • Long neglected by the money-movers and decision-makers of the business world, Prince George's County is becoming the darling of developers throughout the region.
    [. . .]
    "It's just a huge amount of development that's going to go through," County Executive Jack Johnson told The Examiner. "Three years ago, we were the fifth-richest county in the state. Now we are No. 2. We've surpassed Anne Arundel and Baltimore as well as Howard County."
    [Full story].
  • Priest sex-abuse victim presses on
    • Times, 22 Jan 2006 (by Jon Ward, The Washington Times).
    . . . Donna Kollars confronted and helped convict the Catholic priest who abused her 28 years ago. Now she wants to protect others upon his scheduled released today from the Prince George's County jail.
    [. . .]
    Last year, Mrs. Kollars pressed charges against Benham, who pleaded guilty to sodomizing her and to molesting a then-15-year-old boy named Matthew Ponton, who today is a lieutenant colonel in the Army.

    Prince George's Circuit Court Judge Michelle Hotten sentenced Benham to 10 years for each crime, but suspended all but 18 months.

    Col. Ponton had asked Judge Hotten to limit Benham's sentence to 18 months "to broker a sense of forgiveness and compassion."
    [. . .]

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