Sunday, April 09, 2006

Sunday Round Up: Masters edition...

...and Tiger's in the hunt.

Say what you will about golf and particularly the patriarchal Augusta National Golf Club -- host of the Masters Tournament -- but there is something about Jim Nantz ("Hello friends"), azaleas, the Amen Corner, and irredeemably ugly green sport coats that makes this one special. Then again, I'm a sucker for sentimentalism, and that, it seems, is what this one's all about.

Back to our neck of the woods, things seem pretty quiet, which is good for me. Here's the requisite rundown.

The Planning Board barely approved the county's request for funding for improvements at the Belmont Conference Center. The divisions among the board were sharp, with a couple members really taking the county to task for not having a clearly-defined plan for how it would spend the money. If only they could be this critical when reviewing plans submitted by developers.

More on Merdon's Mystery. Following councilman Chris Merdon's introduction of a smoking ban bill that he doesn't support and that is nearly identical to the one he helped kill a few months ago, everyone -- including myself -- is still trying to figure out why? This passage is the most sensible take I've seen...

Glenn E. Schneider, legislative chairman of Smoke Free Howard County, had a theory for Merdon's surprise move.

"He wasn't sure if the exec [Robey] or Ken would wait until September or October to do this," he said.

If they did, Schneider reasoned, smoking would become a campaign issue just as the public began focusing on politics. Merdon's choices then would be to vote for a Democrat-sponsored bill or vote against a popular ban, he said.

This way, Schneider said, the issue will be done and gone by fall, and Merdon can at least claim he initiated action even if he votes against the bill.

Meanwhile, the Democrats have seized the opportunity to throw a little old-fashioned Republican rhetoric at their chief opponent, unitedly calling him a flip flopper.

I'm actually sorry I missed this. Local high school students organized a film festival to show off their work. Titled HOCO, the event took place last Wednesday at Howard Community College. Congratulations to all those who participated. Now let's see more stuff like this.

Got something to say about the police department? Here's your chance.

That's all for now, folks.

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