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Friday, August 07, 2020

Teachers and their unions have been anything but heroes amid COVID-19

No other group has shown as much contempt for its own work during the coronavirus crisis as teachers.

Their unions are actively fighting to keep kids out of classrooms and to limit remote instruction, lest it require too much time and attention from people who are supposed to be wholly devoted to educating our children.

This has been a wrenching time in the labor market, with tens of millions thrown out of work — and also an inspiring one. Workers whom many of us would never have thought of as essential — grocery clerks, delivery guys, meat-packing workers — have kept absolutely necessary parts of the economy ­operating while most of their fellow Americans stayed home.

Doctors, health workers, cops and firefighters have all put their lives on the line.

It isn’t correct to say that all these people have done their jobs uncomplainingly — many have worried, understandably, about their safety and wanted more protections. But all have shown up. All have been there, during the horrific spring outbreak, during a brief respite and during the current summer resurgence.

Anyone who doesn’t acknowledge our debt to them is a thoughtless ingrate.


Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds Caves to Black Lives Matter, Grants Felons Voting Rights

Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds (R) caved to Black Lives Matter and signed an executive order on Wednesday granting voting rights to those who have served their felony sentences.

“When someone serves their sentence and pays the price our justice system has set for their crime, they should have their right to vote restored automatically, plain and simple,” Reynolds said during a press conference on Wednesday.

Reynolds said her executive order would restore the “voting rights of some felons.” She added that her order requires Iowans to complete their sentences, and they will still require those who committed felony homicide offenses to apply for voting rights restoration individually.

“This is a cause on which so many Iowans have worked on,” she added.

The order will allow thousands of Iowans to vote in the upcoming November elections, which has significant implications for the reelection of President Donald Trump, Sen. Joni Ernst’s (R-IA) reelection, and the swing congressional districts in the state.

The Des Moines Register wrote that Reynolds had resisted calls to sign an executive order granting voting rights to felons.


Sally Yates Testifies that Joe Biden Was at Oval Office Meeting on Michael Flynn

Former Acting Attorney General Sally Q. Yates testified on Wednesday at the Senate Judiciary Committee that former Vice President Joe Biden was at a January 5, 2017 meeting in the Oval Office where Michael Flynn was discussed.

Yates testified that she had not known about Flynn’s conversations with then-Russian Ambassador Sergey Yislyak until that meeting, and that the purpose had not been to discuss whether to investigate Flynn, or merely whether to withhold information from him for counterintelligence reasons. Flynn was the incoming National Security Advisor at the time.

Notes taken at the time by then-FBI agent Peter Strzok, and released in June, indicated that Biden suggested Flynn could be investigated for violating the Logan Act, which prevents private citizens from conducting U.S. foreign policy.

Yates said she did not remember all of the details of the January 5 meeting, which was first described by then-National Security Advisor Susan Rice in an email memorandum that she sent to herself as the Obama administration ended.

She confirmed that Biden was there, but could not confirm whether he had brought up the Logan Act. “I don’t remember the Vice President saying much of anything,” she said. She said no formal decision had been made about investigating Flynn for violating the rarely-enforced Logan Act, though she said that she had been skeptical about the idea at the time.

Other important points in Yates’s testimony included:


Cotton: ‘The Act of Accepting the Chinese Money — That Should Be Criminalized’

Wednesday on Fox Business Network’s “Mornings with Maria,” Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) argued for “criminalizing” those accepting money from the Chinese Communist Party or state-owned enterprises of China, given the Asian superpower is a threat to intellectual property and national security.

Cotton also suggested measured be taken to protect U.S. intellectual property.

“The Chinese Communist Party continues its campaign of intellectual property theft and forced technology transfer,” he said. “It is past time for us to insist this stop. The Trump administration and the president have been doing that in various ways. I’ve got legislation that would take more steps, as well. So, for instance, criminalizing the payment of money to American professors and academics who are on the payroll of the Chinese Communist Party or their state-owned enterprises.”



Former First Lady Michelle Obama admitted during her new podcast that quarantine life, the coronavirus pandemic, and Trump administration “hypocrisy” are all contributing to a decline of her mental health.

“I’m waking up in the middle of the night, cause I’m worrying about something, or there’s a heaviness,” Obama said during her show’s initial broadcast Wednesday.

“I try to make sure I get a workout in, although there have been periods throughout this quarantine, where I just have felt too low. You know, I’ve gone through those emotional highs and lows that I think everybody feels, where you just don’t feel yourself, and sometimes there’s been a week or so where I had to surrender to that, and not be so hard on myself. And say, you know what, you’re just not feeling that treadmill right now.”


Media mogul claimed all white people have ‘leg up’ because of their ‘whiteness’

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) labeled billionaire media mogul Oprah Winfrey a “racist” after she claimed white people enjoy privilege “no matter” what.

Responding to recent comments made by Winfrey on her “The Oprah Conversation” show, in which she claimed all white people have a “leg up” because of their “whiteness,” Cruz slammed the daytime TV host for denigrating an entire race.

“Billionaire Oprah lectures the rest of us: ‘You still have your whiteness. That’s what the term “white privilege” is. It means that whiteness still gives you an advantage, no matter.’ What utter, racist BS,” Cruz wrote on Twitter Tuesday evening.

Winfrey’s comments came as she discussed white privilege on her new Apple TV+ show.

More on her comments from The Blaze:


There He Goes Again: Obama’s Insane Funeral Speech

Just when we think Democrats have reached rock bottom, former President Barack Obama opens his mouth, then hands Democrats a shovel.

That Obama was not struck by lightning for all the lies he told (in church, no less) during his July 30 funeral speech for Rep. John Lewis is a testament to God’s patience and grace. It’s also proof Democrats will exploit anything, including someone’s death, for political gain. Turning a funeral into a campaign rally is as slimy and cold-hearted as it gets; on par for a political party that’s become a death cult.

Obama has as much respect for the dead as he does the unborn, so why not turn Lewis’s funeral into an opportunity to dredge up the past, resurrect Jim Crow, divide the country, compare cops to Bull Connor, praise anarchists, pretzel-twist Bible scripture, revise American history, promote voting by mail and throw cheap shots at the guy his administration spied on.

The former Divider-in-Chief wasn’t through, plugging for statehood for Puerto Rico and Washington, D.C., eliminating the Senate filibuster, making election day a national holiday and promoting passage of new voting reform legislation. The only thing he left out was sandblasting Mount Rushmore and replacing the four presidents with his backpfeifengesicht (German word for a face which inspires slapping).


What Sally Yates Said About Comey Was the Only Silver Lining Today...That's Not Saying Much

Okay, Sally Yates really deployed countermeasures in today’s hearing over Obamagate, but if there was a silver lining, for lack of a better term, it was her sharp criticism of ex-FBI Director James Comey’s pursuit of Michael Flynn. Yates said that Comey went “rogue” going after the former official. Flynn was roped into the Russian collusion delusion over phone calls he had with then-Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak, which were run-of-the-mill communications that occur with a new, incoming administration. Even Comey admitted that the callsappeared “legit.” Still, Comey and McCabe were going to get Flynn—no matter what. And it’s not just conservatives saying that. Obama gave his marching ordersregarding Flynn in that infamous January 5, 2017, meeting, where former Vice President Joe Biden suggested using the Logan Act to go after Flynn. Yates was also at that meeting, which was grounded in Obama thinking of ways to protect the FBI’s Russian investigation from being hampered.
“Get the right people on it,” said Obama.
The FBI interviewed Flynn, even though there was no evidence to suggest that even such a meeting should take place. There was no evidence of Russian collusion. There was no evidence that Flynn was a Russian agent. The agents who interviewed Flynn felt like he didn’t lie to them. Yates said in today’s hearing that Comey went “rogue” going after Flynn (via Fox News):
"I was upset that Director Comey didn't coordinate that with us and acted unilaterally," Yates said.
"Did Comey go rogue?" Graham asked.
"You could use that term, yes," Yates agreed.
Yates said she also took issue with Comey for not telling her that Flynn's communications with then-Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak were being investigated and that she first learned about this from President Barack Obama during an Oval Office meeting. Yates said she was "irritated" with Comey for not telling her about this earlier.

Poll: 83% of Voters Don’t Like Obama Neighborhood Diversity Rule

A large majority of Americans agree with President Donald Trump’s decision to reverse an Obama-era regulation designed to bring “diversity” to neighborhoods through incorporating low-income housing, according to poll of 1,000 likely voters.

Rasmussen Reports found that 83 percent of respondents said the federal government should not play a role in deciding where people live. Just 10 percent disagreed.

Although less than the 83 percent of voters in 2015, when President Barack Obama was ready to announce the regulation, said it is not the federal government’s job to diversity neighborhoods by mixing people of different financial demographics, 65 percent in this poll agreed.

The Obama-era rule mostly targeted more affluent, suburban neighborhoods with single family homes.

But 23 percent now say government should play a role in diversifying neighborhoods, up from 8 percent five years ago.

Rasmussen reported on the political and racial divides of its poll:


Gallup: 80 Percent of Blacks Want the Same or More Police in Their Neighborhoods

Defund the police? Not for the vast majority of black Americans, who say the number of cops patrolling their neighborhood should remain the same or even be increased.
This is not the impression we’re getting from the media, who are cheering on Black Lives Matter in their efforts to castrate American police forces. Apparently, they’re doing it in the name of the radical-left faction of black Americans, not the overwhelming majority of black citizens.
Who’d have guessed it?
Over 80 percent of black Americans want the police to spend as much or more time in their neighborhoods as they currently do, new polling from Gallup conducted last month finds.
Asked if they would prefer police spend more, less, or the same amount of time in their neighborhoods, 61 percent of black respondents told Gallup the same, while a further 20 percent said more. Just 19 percent said less. Black respondents were more likely to want more police presence than white, Asian, and all adults overall.
The overwhelming support for current levels of policing even holds among black respondents who say they see the police often or very often. Two in three of those say they would like to see the police the same amount or more; 84 percent of black respondents who see the police “sometimes” responded that way, along with 92 percent of those who see the police rarely or never.

SBY Airport Commission Meeting News Release

The next Wicomico County Airport Commission meeting will be August 10, 2020 at 3 pm.  The meeting will be conducted via telephone conference and in room 301 of the Salisbury Wicomico County Government Building at 125 N Division St, Salisbury, MD 21801.  As always, the public is invited to either forum.  To join the meeting via teleconference, dial 510-538-9438, when prompted, access code is132 784 1087and password is 89854798 .  We ask that you follow the following guidelines:

1.       Please put your phone on mute to avoid any interruptions. 
2.       Please hold all questions until the Public Comment portion of the agenda.
3.       When you speak, please identify yourself first before questions/comments.
4.       You may be asked to identify anyone present with you during the call.
5.       For the purpose of the minutes, the entire meeting will be recorded including your questions/comments.
6.       You may check into the teleconference up to 15 minutes early.

The agenda and last meeting minutes (July, 2020) will be posted on and  approximately three days before the meeting. 

JAIL FAUCI: New Report Compares Turkey COVID Treatment with HCQ vs. USA Without HCQ and the Results Are Crystal Clear

A new report was released by Sky News on Turkey’s COVID-19 Coronavirus early hydroxychloroquine treatment strategy and the results are clear.

The early treatment program in Turkey relies on hydroxychloroquine as the first step in the therapeutic process. reported:

Sky News’ story about “Turkey’s COVID Detectives” by special correspondent Alex Crawford is remarkable. It not only covers the track and trace teams in action in Turkey, but also the therapeutic approach, which relies on hydroxychloroquine as a first step to treat symptomatic patients.

The Turkish approach is at odds with most countries, such as the UK, where symptomatic patients are asked to stay home, wait, until the symptoms essentially become unbearable, and then serious complications and hospitalization become very likely.


“Treason!” President Trump Lashes out at Obama, Biden as Sally Yates Testifies on Carter Page FISA Warrants

The Senate Judiciary Committee chaired by Lindsey Graham (SC) held a hearing on Wednesday on oversight of the FBI’s Crossfire Hurricane investigation.

Former Acting Attorney General Sally Yates testified that she reviewed the first and second Carter Page FISA warrants “in their entirety” before signing them.

Yates said that that she would not have signed off on the surveillance of Carter Page if she knew what she knows now.

Recall, former DAG Rod Rosenstein said the same thing during his June testimony.


“Why the Hell Would I Take a Test?… Are You a Junkie?” – Joe Biden Lashes Out Black Reporter, Asks if He’s a Junkie After He Is Asked if He’ll Take Cognitive Test (VIDEO)

Joe Biden was asked by Errol Barnett of CBS News if he’d taken a cognitive test during an interview on Wednesday morning. Sleepy Biden lost it.

The longtime politician who has a rough time with black voters recently asked if the black reporter was a junkie.

“No, I haven’t taken a test. Why the hell would I take a test? C’mon man. That’s like saying you, before you got in this program, if you take a test where you’re taking cocaine or not, what do you think, huh? Are you a junkie?”

Can you imagine if Trump called a black reporter a junkie?


Biden remark on African American vs. Latino 'attitudes' sparks concern

Biden raises eyebrows with remark contrasting African American, Latino diversity

He made the comments during an interview that aired at the NAHJ and NABJ convention

Former Vice President Joe Biden raised eyebrows Thursday with comments comparing the African American and Latino communities.

During an interview that aired at the convention of the National Association of Black Journalists and National Association of Hispanic Journalists, NPR's Lulu Garcia-Navarro pressed the presumptive Democratic nominee if he would "re-engage" with Cuba as president, something she suggested would have an impact on Cuban-American voters in Florida.

"Yes, yes," Biden responded. "And by the way, what you all know, but most people don’t know, unlike the African American community, with notable exceptions, the Latino community is an incredibly diverse community with incredibly different attitudes about different things.”


Nevada, Virginia See Unemployment Spikes

Some state benefit funds are running dry.

Nevada, Virginia and New Mexico are seeing the biggest jumps in new unemployment claims as a new wave of closings prompts more layoffs, according to figures released today by the Department of Labor for the week ending July 25.

Nevada claims rose almost 50% in two weeks, to about 22,000, with Virginia up 44% and New Mexico up 21%. However, states with coronavirus spikes such as Florida and Texas saw continued drops in claims. Florida’s claims were down 34% and Texas down 28%.

Nationally claims were up for the second straight week, to 1.4 million.

Nevada is struggling to find alternatives to an unemployment fund that’s expected to run dry within weeks, with a wave of new business closings fueling more unemployment.


As COVID-19 Tanks the Economy, Eviction Moratoriums Expire

It’s the beginning of the month, rent is due, the $600 in federal unemployment relief has lapsed and Congress seems far from agreeing on another coronavirus aid package. Meanwhile, the federal moratorium on evictions has ended, and similar mandates in many cities and states have expired or soon will.

This week, as pressure mounts on localities and protesters draw attention to a #CancelRent movement, President Donald Trump announced that he is considering a federal ban on evictions, which he said are “a big deal.”

“A lot of people are going to be evicted,” Trump said at a news briefing this week. “But I’m going to stop it because I’ll do it myself if I have to. I have a lot of powers with respect to executive orders and we’re looking at that very seriously right now.”

Also this week, Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam, a Democrat, pushed back against efforts from housing advocates to reinstate his state’s eviction ban, which expired in June. An executive order, he told reporters, would just cause more problems. But he asked the courts to stay evictions through September.

And this week, Nevada lawmakers passed legislation that would allow courts to pause evictions for up to 30 days so tenants and landlords can work out an agreement. The state’s moratorium is slated to expire on Aug. 31. Democratic Gov. Steve Sisolak is expected to sign the legislation, according to the Las Vegas Sun.

In 24 of the 43 states and Washington, D.C., that enacted eviction moratoriums, the measures have expired, according to data compiled by Eviction Lab, a Princeton University research project, and Emily Benfer, a law professor at Wake Forest University School of Law.


Millions Worth of PPP Loans Went to Chinese-Owned Companies, Report Finds

Hundreds of millions of U.S. taxpayer dollars went to Chinese companies from the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), which was designed to help small businesses survive during the pandemic, according to a new report.

A review of public PPP loan data by consultancy firm Horizon Advisory found that $192 million to $419 million in loans were given to more than 125 Chinese-owned or -invested companies operating in the United States. Many of the loans were substantial, with at least 32 Chinese-owned firms receiving more than $1 million under the program, totaling between $85 million and $180 million, it found.

The recipients included Chinese state-owned enterprises, companies that supported Beijing’s military development program, firms identified by the United States as national security threats, and media outlets controlled by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), the report said. Many were based in critical industries such as aerospace, pharmaceuticals, and semiconductor manufacturing. These are sectors that the CCP has slated for aggressive development to achieve global dominance, with the goal of supplanting competitors in the United States and other countries.

The report concluded that “without appropriate policy guardrails and monitoring of U.S. tax dollars intended for relief, recovery, and growth of the U.S. economy, there is a significant risk that funds will support foreign strategic rivals, namely China.”

Many of these Chinese-linked firms could have tapped into other sources of capital from public or private markets to support their American operations, the report said.

“Their PPP participation saved U.S.-based jobs, but likely at the expense of other U.S. small businesses.”


Oregon Governor Brown Fooled by Russian Pranksters, Pledges Military Help for Ukraine

Oregon Governor Kate Brown (D-Portland) fell for a hoax call from Russian pranksters in a video released this week. In the video, Governor Brown says she will talk to her team about providing military assistance to Ukraine in response to the occupation by Russian forces.


Re-elect Trump Rally Ocean City

Our America

                Their America . . . which America do you want
                 for your children and grandchildren?       

The democrats, the anarchists, the marxists, the leftists will stop at nothing to get Trump out of office!  But Trump is not the target, we are!  Trump stands between them and us, between America and totalitarianism . . . will you spend two hours to help keep him in office?  When there is no police, no 2nd Amendment, no Trump, they WILL come after you, your rights, your America.  They have been clearing the path for decades, a path that has been unobstructed because of the silence of the silent majority.

Please, be silent no more!  Help us influence public opinion as we have been doing for the past three summers . . . tens of thousands of passing tourists have seen us on Route 50, as they slowly make their way to the beach.  We have inspired Trump supporters who may be dismayed and discouraged by events and fake-news, and we are in-the-face of the haters who think theirs is the only opinion that people should hear.

We must - - yes, must - - do what we have done many times in the past . . . proudly show our support for Trump and for our country.  This President - - just as the founders did - - has pledged his life, his fortune and his sacred honor to this country and the people who are proud of it.  

Two hours folks, time to stand up for what you believe in . . . or don’t complain when there is nothing left for you, your children, your grandchildren to believe in.  We are in trouble like never before.  Our country - - our President - - is under attack from within.

Do not make excuses, do not leave it up to the other guy, the more people we have the more of an impact we make. Two hours 9 AM to 11 AM, Saturday August 15 (OC Air Show traffic), followed by a social at Caribbean Joe’s pool bar, a lunch buffet will be provided to rally participants at no cost.

Commit now by replying to this email.  Note that we will cancel rather than embarrass ourselves, our President, and our country with a poor turnout.  Time has run out!!!!!

Details re OC location, signs, parking, social etc will follow.
Like and follow our facebook page.

A Viewer Writes: Salisbury Fire Department EMS Award

Salisbury Fire Department and the City of Salisbury are all over the internet bragging about Salisbury Fire Department receiving the “Lifeline EMS Silver Plus Recognition Award”, which seems all fine and dandy, BUT when you take into consideration that the have a cardiac intervention hospital in their first due/response area, they should have most definitely achieved the gold standard.

Mortgage Rates crush it again, Plunge to a new All-time Low

Mortgage rates just keep sliding lower, hitting yet another new record low this week. The benchmark 30-year fixed-rate mortgage fell 8 basis points to 3.22 percent, according to Bankrate’s weekly survey of large lenders. That’s the lowest rate ever in more than three decades the survey has been conducted.

Some expert rate watchers see still lower mortgage rates ahead. “Rates should head lower as the 10-year Treasury now struggles to maintain a yield above 0.5 percent,” says Gordon Miller, owner, Miller Lending Group, LLC, Cary, North Carolina.

But those looking for a new mortgage or a refinanceshould be wary about grabbing the first low rate they see. One reason, says Miller, is closing costs. “The key moving forward for homeowners will be the amount of closing costs. A lot of pretty rates are being advertised, but an APR might be the worst way to alert a potential borrower of the costs involved. Averaging the costs over the term of 30 years makes it sound more attractive, but if the APR was calculated on the actual life of the loan itself then the rate could average out over 5 percent.”


Pregnant woman dies, baby critical after shots fired into Columbia house, police say

Police offer reward of up to $5,000 for information

A pregnant woman inside a house struck by gunfire that came from outside has died and her baby is in critical condition, Howard County police said.

County police said officers were called around 11 p.m. Friday to the 6600 block of Dovecote Drive in Columbia for a report of several shots fired into the back of a house.

Police said officers found that multiple bullets entered a residence from outside, striking Rabiah Ahmad, 30, who was staying at the house. She was taken to Shock Trauma, where she died.

Ahmad was 28 weeks pregnant and doctors delivered the baby, who is in critical condition. Family members told 11 News the baby is doing OK.

No one else was injured in the incident.


US Weekly Jobless Claims total 1.186M, lowest level of Covid pandemic

Weekly jobless claims hit their lowest level of the pandemic area, totaling 1.186 million last week, well below Wall Street expectations.

Economists surveyed by Dow Jones had been looking for 1.42 million. The level for the week ended Aug. 1 represented a drop of 249,000 from the previous period.

Amid worries that the employment picture was faltering after two record-breaking months of job creation, the claims number indicates some momentum. Continuing claims, or those who have collected benefits for two straight weeks, dropped by 844,000 to 16.1 million.


Dismantling Student Loan Program Best Path to Fight ‘Leftist Indoctrination’ on Campus

Americans should demand better from their universities. Recent riots and vandalism taking place across the country have caused many to scrutinize what students are being taught in colleges. That scrutiny has even reached the White House.

President Donald Trump tweeted out a possible answer July 10 to the growing tensions and illiberal civic education in the ivory tower:

Removing the tax-exempt status of American colleges and universities is an idea that has been suggested by some segments of the policy sphere. One sympathizes: A 2020 study by The Harvard Crimson found substantial political homogeneity among the professoriate.


OC housing market sees surge among out-of-state buyers

The covid-19 crisis may be hammering retail and restaurants, but resort area Realtors are experiencing an even higher demand for housing in a market with a quickly dwindling number of listings.

The Coastal Association of Realtors reported 204 closed sales in the 21842-zip code for June, which is a 164.9 percent increase from the previous month and a 61.9 percent increase from June 2019.

Joseph Wilson, the broker at Coastal Life Realty Group and president of the Coastal Association of Realtors, said he has seen a great interest from out-of-state buyers during the covid-19 pandemic.

“We usually deal with people from out of state, but yes, we’ve seen definitely an uptick in the number of people that want to move to this area or purchase a second home,” Wilson said.

Wilson believes the ability to work remotely is directly correlated to the high demand in the local market.


Bob Culver Memorial Service

Bob Culver Memorial Service

Date:                   Tuesday, August 11th, 2020
Time:                   Doors open at 12 pm
                             Service begins at 1 pm
Location:            Wicomico Youth & Civic Center
                             500 Glen Avenue
                             Salisbury, MD 21804

The family of Bob Culver invites you to join them in a celebration of his life on August 11th, however, your health and safety is top priority for them.  Please review the information below to determine if you will celebrate in person or stream the service live.  The Civic Center can safely allow 25% capacity, approximately 1,000 seats – to protect your safety.

What You Need To Know:

·       Please arrive early at the Civic Center for health screening questions in the Normandy Arena Lobby.  Doors will open at Noon.  Be prepared to give at least one name in your “party” and telephone number for contact tracing.
·       Properly worn (covering nose and mouth) masks must be worn at all times.
·       Attendees will be seated by ushers with their party, socially distanced rules between parties. There will not be a receiving line during the service.
·       Please respect the social distance guidelines which are in place to protect everyone. Facilities such as restrooms will be cleaned routinely during the service. 
·       If you are not feeling well, please stay home and join us online to view the memorial service.
·       This event will be live streamed through PAC14 and available on demand.
·       Please visit to leave online condolences and memories of Bob.

Bob was a lifelong supporter of Wicomico County and giving back to those most in need.  In his honor and in lieu of flowers, the family asks for a donation to be made in his name to one of the local organizations below.

Bob Culver Memorial Fund
Community Foundation of the Eastern Shore
Meals on Wheels
MAC Inc., Agency on Agency

Maryland’s CCOVID-19 Positivity Rate Drops Below Four Percent For First Time, Hospitalizations Decline

Maryland Reports Third Consecutive Day of Record Low Positivity Seven-Day Positivity Rate is 3.90%, Daily Positivity Rate Declines to 3.23%Total Hospitalizations Drop to 528; 135 ICU Beds In UsePositivity Rate Declines in Major Jurisdictions; Montgomery County at Record LowState Officials Continue to Monitor Rising Positivity Rate in Worcester CountyOver A Million Marylanders Tested, 16.7% of State Population
ANNAPOLIS, MDGovernor Larry Hogan today announced that Maryland’s statewide COVID-19 positivity rate has fallen below four percent for the first time, to 3.90%. Hospitalization metrics also declined slightly, with 528 current total hospitalizations and 135 ICU beds in use.
Statewide Positivity Rate Drops to 3.90%, Lowest On Record. The state’s seven-day average positivity rate has dropped to 3.90%—the first time under 4%, and the lowest level reported since the pandemic began. The daily positivity rate dropped to 3.23%. The state’s positivity rate has been under 5% since June 25, and is now more than 85% lower than its April 17 peak.

Total Current Hospitalizations Decline to 528. There are 528 total current COVID-19 hospitalizations—a decrease of 7 over the past 24 hours. There are 135 ICU beds in use—a decrease of 4.
Positivity Rate Declines in Major Jurisdictions, Montgomery County Falls to Record Low. The positivity rate declined today for Anne Arundel (3.38%), Baltimore City (5.15%), Baltimore County (5.00%), Frederick (1.38%), Harford (3.53%), Howard (3.15%), Montgomery (2.50%), and Prince George’s County (5.80%.) Baltimore City’s positivity rate has dropped to 5.00%, its lowest level since July 6—down 81.74% from its peak on April 19. Montgomery County’s positivity rate has fallen to a record low of 2.50%—down more than 92% from its peak on April 20.
State Health Officials Continue to Monitor Rising Positivity Rate in Worcester County. State health officials are currently monitoring the situation in Worcester County, where the positivity rate has risen by more than 93% since July 31, to 6.59%.
More Than One Million Marylanders Tested, 16.7% of Population. In total, Maryland has now conducted 1,377,459 COVID-19 tests, including 28,579 tests over the last 24 hours. 1,006,824 Marylanders have now been tested for COVID-19, representing 16.7% of the state’s population.
Positivity Rate Among Marylanders Over 35 at Record Low, Positivity Rate Among Marylanders Under 35 Declines to 5.35%. The positivity rate among Marylanders over 35 is down to a record low 3.19%. The positivity rate among Marylanders under 35 has begun to decline, and is now at 5.35%.
215 COVID-19 Testing Sites Available. Marylanders can plan to be tested at one of 215 testing sites by visiting

Schools will begin with distance learning

Public system will follow ‘Responsible Return’ plan with four-stage protocol

The Worcester County Public School system will begin its year with distance learning, or Stage One, of its “Responsible Return” model, Superintendent of Schools Lou Taylor announced at a Thursday afternoon press conference at the board of education offices in Newark.

“We recognize the significant challenges that distance learning poses for many of our students’ academic and social emotional development, which is why we intend to re-evaluate conditions every two weeks,” he said. “As those conditions allow, we hope to move into Stage Two by Monday, Sept. 28, which will welcome back into our buildings small groups of identified students for face-to-face instruction.”

In what appeared to be a show of support for the decision, also present at the conference were board of education members, the county commissioners, representatives of the county health department, the Worcester County Teachers Association and the Worcester County Educational Support Personnel Association.


Ocean City Mulling Sunfest Call; Major Tweaks Likely If Annual Fall Event Held

OCEAN CITY — Sunfest 2020 remains a distinct possibility, but if the event is held this year, it will likely look and feel a lot different than it has for the last four decades.

With Sunfest, scheduled for the first weekend in October this year, still about two months away, Ocean City officials are facing a critical decision on whether to move forward with the town’s signature fall special event. Due to the ongoing COVID-19 situation, many of the town’s special events this summer have already been canceled or significantly altered.

Just last week, the Bike Week events scheduled roughly around the same time were postponed. On Monday, Special Events Director Frank Miller outlined some of the challenges facing Sunfest this fall and presented proposed alterations to the event if it goes off as planned.

“We’ve come to realize the ability to execute this event is a pretty major unknown day to day until the gates open,” he said. “Even though you may choose that we can move forward with this event, we’re always subject to possible change.”


Ocean City Bails Out Air Show With $100K Funding Boost; State Finds Ticketed Areas Violate Pandemic Directives

OCEAN CITY — The OC Air Show, slated for next weekend, was briefly in jeopardy this week after an interpretation the traditional show center and ticketed areas on the beach were in violation of state COVID-19 directives, but the event will go on after resort officials agreed to supply an influx of cash to offset the revenue losses.

The OC Air Show was slated for mid-June, just as it has been for the last dozen years. However, with the COVID-19 situation, it was postponed in June and new dates were later determined for next weekend, Aug. 15-16. Throughout the process, air show officials worked with the Town of Ocean City and the Worcester County Health Department on a plan to make sure the state directives in place regarding social distancing and other directives were met at the official events on the beach in the downtown area.

Naturally, the air show can be viewed all over the resort area and up and down the roughly 10-mile stretch of beach, but the official events including the ticketed areas and VIP areas and the like are focused in the show center on the beach. The audio and narration that accompanies the air show are featured in that downtown area, resulting in large crowds gathered on the beach and Boardwalk.


Poacher Sentenced to 11 Years in Prison for Killing Silverback Gorilla

A Ugandan court just sentenced a poacher to 11 years in prison for killing a silverback gorilla. The man, Byamukama Felix, confessed to killing the gorilla last month during the trial.

Rafiki, or “friend” in Swahili, was the dominant male gorilla for the Nkuringo troop of the Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, an 80,000-acre UNESCO World Heritage site in Uganda. As many as half of all living mountain gorillas call Bwindi Park their home.

Rafiki was thought to be about 25 years old before his body was found inside the park. He was found with what appeared to be a stab wound so park authorities ordered a necropsy. The post-mortem confirmed that he was injured with a sharp implement leading to his death.


Parents Reflect On ‘No-Win Situation’ For County Students, Teachers

NEWARK – Parents and teachers this week are adjusting to the news that the school year will begin virtually for the Worcester County Public Schools (WCPS) community.

Last Thursday, Superintendent Lou Taylor announced that the school year would begin with distance learning, Stage One of the “Responsible Return” model, for all students. Officials plan to reevaluate conditions every two weeks and hope to move into Stage Two, which would bring small groups of students back into school, by Sept. 28.

“We all recognize that there is no perfect solution to addressing the challenges that this pandemic has created for school systems, including our school system,” Taylor said as he made the announcement last Thursday.

As proposed, WCPS students will engage in distance learning for Stage One, a tiered support model that brings some students back to school in Stage Two, a hybrid alternating week model in Stage Three and full-on face-to-face learning in the final Stage Four.


US Election: First presidential debate to be held in Cleveland on Sept 29

US President Donald Trump is facing his Democrat challenger and former Vice President Joe Biden in the November 3 election

The first debate in the run-up to the US presidential election will be held on September 29 in Cleveland, Ohio, the Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD) said in a statement on Monday.

"CPD is pleased to announce that the first presidential debate will be co-hosted by Case Western Reserve University and Cleveland Clinic and held at the Health Education Campus (HEC) in Cleveland, OH," the commission said, listing September 29 as the date for the event.

US President Donald Trump is facing his Democrat challenger and former Vice President Joe Biden in the November 3 election.

The CPD said the second debate between Trump and Biden will be on October 15 at the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts in Miami, Florida, while the third will be on October 22 at Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee.


Cannabis is bad for your HEART: Doctors warn using the drug can trigger heart attacks and strokes

Cannabis is bad for the heart and may trigger heart attacks and strokes, doctors have warned.

The American Heart Association (AHA), who reviewed the available evidence, now recommend avoiding cannabis to protect the heart.

In a scientific statement, it said smoking cannabis has some of the same harms as tobacco, which is known to be a leading cause of death worldwide.


Thank God It's Friday 8-7-20

What will you be doing this weekend?

Governor Hogan Announces All-Electronic Tolling Now Permanent at All MDTA Facilities Statewide

Drivers Urged to Sign Up For E-ZPass, Pay Lowest Tolls

Governor Larry Hogan today announced that full-time all-electronic (cashless) tolling is now permanent across Maryland, including at the John F. Kennedy Memorial Highway (I-95), Fort McHenry Tunnel (I-95), Baltimore Harbor Tunnel (I-895), and Nice/Middleton Bridge (US 301). With all-electronic tolling, drivers do not stop to pay tolls. Instead, tolls are collected through E-ZPass and video tolling. The system provides convenience for motorists, less engine idling for better fuel efficiency and reduced emissions, decreased congestion, and increased safety.

“In addition to historic toll relief and record-breaking progress on critical infrastructure updates, permanent all-electronic tolling is the latest step we have taken to save motorists time and money,” said Governor Hogan. “By combining innovation, safety, and savings, this truly is a win-win for the state government and for everyone who travels in our great state."

The Maryland Transportation Authority (MDTA) implemented temporary all-electronic tolling statewide in March as part of its COVID-19 response, and made all-electronic tolling permanent at the Bay Bridge in May with the installation of a new tolling gantry. Other MDTA facilities, including the Intercounty Connector (ICC)/MD 200, I-95 Express Toll Lanes in Baltimore, and the Key (I-695) and Hatem (US 40) bridges, already operate under all-electronic tolling.

“During the COVID-19 emergency, all-electronic tolling has been an operational success and has helped us protect our toll collection employees and the traveling public,” said MDTA Executive Director Jim Ports. “With this system now permanent, stopping to pay tolls in Maryland is a part of history.”

Under all-electronic tolling, motorists who previously paid with cash at the John F. Kennedy Memorial Highway, Fort McHenry Tunnel, Baltimore Harbor Tunnel, and the Nice/Middleton Bridge are currently assessed via video tolling at the cash rate. That temporary practice began in response to Maryland's COVID-19 state of emergency, and standard video toll rates will be restored at a date yet to be determined.

Motorists are urged to join the nearly 1.4 million drivers who pay the lowest tolls with E-ZPass Maryland. Transponders are free, and sign-up is available 24/7 at Motorists also can get E-ZPass On-the-Go transponders at participating Giant Food and Weis Markets. The transponder comes with $25 in prepaid tolls for immediate use, then users can sign up online for E-ZPass service. A full list of retail locations is available at

Drivers will soon also have the option to register their vehicle for a new Pay-By-Plate method that allows tolls to be automatically billed to credit cards at the same rate as cash toll rates for all facilities, except the Intercounty Connector and I-95 Express Toll Lanes (ETL). For the ICC and ETL, customers using Pay-By-Plate will still save at least 20% on their tolls compared to the video toll rate. Pay-By-Plate benefits infrequent toll customers as well as those who do not have an E-ZPass account.

Since 2017, the MDTA has undertaken major training and career development initiatives to support permanent toll collection employees as they transition into other positions. These employees are currently assisting the MDTA in new ways, including as screeners at MDTA building entry points.

The MDTA E-ZPass Customer Service Centers located at toll facilities are operating at limited capacity during the COVID-19 state of emergency. To learn more about MDTA measures to assist customers during the COVID-19 emergency, go to