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BALTIMORE (AP) Baltimore's Board of Estimates has approved Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake's proposed $2.7 billion budget. The panel's approval Wednesday clears the way for the city council to consider the proposed fiscal year 2012 spending plan, which closes a projected shortfall with cuts, but does not raise taxes.

CAMBRIDGE, Md. (AP) The Chesapeake Bay's health has dropped for the first time in four years, according to a new report card. The University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science gave the bay's health a score of 42 out of 100 possible points in 2010, down from 46 the year before.

BALTIMORE (AP) The Howard County council is expected to take a vote Monday on whether to allow speed cameras in school zones. The proposal would only allow the cameras in school zones and would issue a $40 ticket for drivers going faster than 12 mph over the speed limit.

BALTIMORE (AP) Former Baltimore mayor and Maryland Gov. William Donald Schaefer has been remembered as a longtime cheerleader for the city during a political career that lasted more than 50 years. The funeral was held yesterday for the 89-year-old.

BALTIMORE (AP) A last candlelight vigil is being held to honor the memory of a North Carolina teen whose body was found in a river nearly four months after she disappeared in Maryland. The vigil is planned for 7 o'clock tonight at the Reisterstown Square Apartments, the place where 16-year-old Phylicia Barnes was last seen alive in December.

COLLEGE PARK, Md. (AP) Wallace Loh was appointed president of the University of Maryland last August and started work on Nov. 1. But he has not yet been formally sworn in. That changes today, when university officials and other dignitaries gather for Loh's inaugural convocation and investiture ceremony.

NPR

'Little House,' Big Demand: Never Underestimate Laura Ingalls Wilder

Wilder's memoir reveals that she witnessed more violence than you'd ever know from her children's books. The South Dakota State Historical Society can barely keep up with demand for the autobiography.
NPR

Coffee Horror: Parody Pokes At Environmental Absurdity Of K-Cups

The market for single-serving coffee pods is dominated by Keurig's K-Cups. But they aren't recyclable, and critics say that's making a monster of an environmental mess. Meet the K-Cup Godzilla.
NPR

Obama's Budget Would Undo Broad Cuts Made During Recession

The across-the-board spending cuts made in 2013, known as the sequester, reduced defense and domestic budgets by hundreds of millions each. Republicans are expected to fiercely defend that plan.
NPR

Charles Townes, Laser Inventor, Black Hole Discoverer, Dies At 99

Physicist Charles Townes died Tuesday. He was a key inventor of the laser and won the Nobel Prize for his discovery in 1964. But his career didn't end there.

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