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Special Session Will Include Tax Hikes and Cuts

Next week’s special session of the Maryland General Assembly will include proposals, very similar to the one House and Senate budget negotiators approved in the final hours of the legislative session last month. Neither the House, nor the Senate, voted on the proposal. The so-called “Doomsday Budget” would have taken effect July 1st, unless lawmakers approved a tax bill, according to Governor Martin O’Malley. One aspect of the income tax law would see increased income tax rates for individuals with an adjusted gross income above $100,000 and above $150,000 for those filing joint returns.

 

Post Offices to Remain Open, Some with Shorter Hours

The United States Postal Service has backed down form a plan to close thousands of rural post offices, but some may have shorter hours. It had planned to close thousands of the outlets after May 15th, but rural areas expressed concerns that the closings would hurt their communities. Several local and regional post offices in both Maryland and West Virginia will operate with shorter hours.

 

Drought Watch Declared for the Area

Despite the forecast of rain over the next several days, Western Maryland remains under a drought watch. Rainfall in the region for the first four months of the year has been about 64 per cent of normal. The watch includes Allegany, Garrett, Washington, Frederick, Carroll, Harford and Cecil counties.

 

Miner Suffers Broken Back

A coal miner, who has yet to be identified, reportedly suffered a broken back in an accident at the Casselman Mine on Durst Road Tuesday evening. The man, believed to be in his 20’s, was trapped by a scoop bucket, pinned between that and the mine roof. He was taken to the Western Maryland Regional Medical Center, where he was listed in stable condition. The area of the mine where the accident happened, was ordered shut down by the MSHA. Mine production at the Casselman mine began in June of last year.

 

Unofficial Primary Results

Tuesday was Primary Election Day in West Virginia, and locally, the unofficial results are in. The Board of Education race saw Craig Rotruck garnering 1,569 votes to 1,187 for “Butch” Wahl. Jerry Whisner received 1400 votes to 936 for Leon Ravenscroft in the Republican race for Mineral County Commissioner. For Mineral County Sheriff, Craig Fraley received 1343 tallies to 448 for Craig Courtney.

 

Man Arrested in Breaking and Entering

A Cumberland man has been arrested in connection with a breaking and entering that took place on April 18th in the 300-block of High Bedford Street. Twenty-four year old Demond Arthur Scott was taken into custody on Tuesday, and charged with first and fourth-degree burglary and theft of less than $1,000. Scott was taken to District Court for his initial appearance and released on personal recognizance.

 

Meyersdale Pizza Shop Entered, Money Stolen

Nearly $1,000 was stolen from the Take Six pizza shop on Grant Street in Meyersdale, sometime between Sunday and Monday. Two bags, one containing cash and the other containing coins, were taken. Anyone with information is asked to contact the Somerset barrack of the Pennsylvania State Police at (814)-445-4104.

 

Wallace Street Repairs Underway

Permanent repairs are being made to Wallace Street, and the work should run through next Wednesday. Parking is limited during the repairs, and residents are asked to obey the “No Parking” signs that are posted. Please use caution in the area of work and obey all traffic control signs. Drivers should also expect delays during this time period.

 

Man Arrested on First-Degree Murder Charges

A Masontown, West Virginia man was arrested in Preston County Tuesday night, charged with the first degree murder of 38-year old Leslie Layman. Forty-eight year old Dennis Ervin was captured by Preston County sheriff’s deputies after a brief search near Independence. Neither the details of the relationship, nor the relationship between Ms. Layman and Ervin was known. The investigation is in the preliminary stages and more information could be released later in the week.

 

Hagerstown Approves Funding for Multiuse Sports and Events Center

The city of Hagerstown’s willingness to contribute up to $400,000 annually over a 20-year period to support a multiuse sports and events center hinges on acquiring a long-term lease with the Hagerstown Suns. The City Council has voted to approve the motion, and an indirect contribution of $400,000 would come from the Washington County Board of Commissioners. That way, the city can contribute up to $800,000 toward the local share of debt service on the facility that is expected to cost about $30 million.

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