Hornberger Admin Killed Longstanding Pay “Parity” in Cops Contract, Deputies Barred from Sharing in 6% Mid-Year Windfall Given Favored Few

April 8, 2022

NEWS ANALYSIS The Hornberger administration demanded removal of a longstanding provision of Cecil County Sheriff’s Deputies’ union contracts that assured cops of receiving equal pay boosts given to other county workers, while the administration was secretly drafting new payscales and a plan to boost pay for other workers by 6 percent, or double the...
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Cecil Co Exec Hornberger Budget Gives Penny Property Tax Cut, State Minimum to Schools; Deputies Get “Blue Ribbon” but No ‘Green’ Pay

April 4, 2022

NEWS ANALYSIS Cecil County Executive Danielle Hornberger (R) submitted her proposed Fiscal 2023 budget to the County Council on 4/1/2022, providing a penny cut on the property tax rate, the minimum state-required aid level for county schools and Cecil College, and a “Blue Ribbon Commission” to look at law enforcement pay scales—but no extra...
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Cecil Co Council Makes Strategic, but Heated, Retreat from Showdown with Hornberger on Raises for County Employees; Deputies Still Excluded

March 25, 2022

NEWS ANALYSIS The Cecil County Council backed down from a fiscal confrontation with County Executive Danielle Hornberger over a $2.8 million pay boost package for some county employees at an “emergency” Council session on Tuesday (3/22/2022), approving the measure on a unanimous 5-0 vote a week after the plan failed on a 2-2 tie...
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Hornberger Uses Cecil County Website to Smear Councilors with Fake “De-funding” Cops Claim; Documents Show $ to Co Exec Pals

March 18, 2022

NEWS ANALYSIS Cecil County Executive Danielle Hornberger (R) staged a partisan coup on the official county government website and Facebook page on Wednesday (3/17/2022) to falsely accuse two County Council members of voting to “de-fund” local police– when in fact they were simply seeking to delay a vote until they could get more information...
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Deputies, ‘Transparency’ Advocates Challenge Hornberger at Budget ‘Town Hall’; Schools, Library Backers Join Chorus of Critics

March 6, 2022

NEWS ANALYSIS In the past, Cecil County budget hearings usually sounded like polite beg-a-thons, with primarily schools and libraries advocates pleading for funds. But this year, a budget “town hall” meeting in Elkton was a chorus of anger and direct challenges to County Executive Danielle Hornberger’s policies, lack of spending “transparency” and short-changing of...
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Cecil County Council Ponders Charter Changes; Moves to Clarify, Re-Balance Powers in Local Government

February 13, 2022

NEWS ANALYSIS The Cecil County Council, after a year of often being cut out of local government decision-making by the County Executive, is considering a series of amendments to the county Charter that would clarify the Council’s role and spell out procedures for filling vacancies, membership on the Ethics Commission and decisions on major...
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Cecil County Finance Chief Rakes in Annapolis Political Consulting $ as Taxpayers Pay Six-Figure Salary; Council Pleads for Budget Numbers, Gets Limited Answers

January 23, 2022

A CECIL TIMES SPECIAL REPORT James Appel, the Cecil County Director of Finance who is paid more than $124,000 a year by local taxpayers, is also operating an Annapolis political campaign finances consulting business, earning at least $42,000 in 2021. At the same time, he has been working in Elkton just four days a...
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Cecil County Councilor Jackie Gregory Files for Dist. 36 Delegate: Challenge Undercuts Delegation “Team,” Another GOP Committee Pick to Fill a Council Seat?

January 10, 2022

NEWS ANALYSIS Cecil County Council member Jackie Gregory (R-5) has filed as a candidate in the 2022 Republican primary for state Delegate in District 36, potentially casting aside the Council seat to which she won re-election just 14 months ago and challenging the all-Republican delegation that has worked together as a “team” for the...
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Cecil County Council Avoids Political Dodgeball: Picks Culberson for Vacant Seat, Commends Panel That Rejected Mischief Maps

November 19, 2021

NEWS ANALYSIS Faced with limited options, the Cecil County Council took a path of subtle resistance this week when it picked the least politically challenging candidate to fill a vacant Council seat that will be on the ballot in next year’s elections. The Council also welcomed a redistricting commission report that rejected some highly...
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Dan Schneckenburger Replaced as Cecil County Administrator; Sudden Departure Raises Questions on Hornberger, Scott Agenda

October 21, 2021

NEWS ANALYSIS Dan Schneckenburger, a former one-term Cecil County Council member who was installed as the county Director of Administration by new County Executive Danielle Hornberger less than a year ago, was suddenly replaced this week by an acting administrator who lives in Harford County. The sudden actions shocked County Council members and raised...
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Hornberger Insults Cecil County Councilors Who Question Her Demands; Strongarm Tactics by Appointees Trigger Independence Moves by Council

October 1, 2021

NEWS ANALYSIS Cecil County Executive Danielle Hornberger has lobbed an insult-laden video attack on the County Council for daring to disagree with her on an Elkton town land annexation case, claiming in a fact-free screed that Councilors were “bought and paid for” by developers—despite the fact that most of the Councilors had minimal campaign...
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Patchell to Resign from Cecil County Council for Perryville Town Post, Setting Off GOP Nominations, Council Vote; Quiet, Respected Voice of Reason Departs

September 20, 2021

NEWS ANALYSIS Cecil County Council member George Patchell (R-4), a two-term elected official from Perryville and a consistently thoughtful and nonpartisan voice on many local issues, is resigning from the panel to take a job as the Perryville town administrator. His departure will set off a potentially politically fraught process, led by the local...
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Cecil County Council Unveils Redistricting Commission, Sammons Stirs Political Pot for GOP Seat

September 9, 2021

NEWS ANALYSIS Cecil County Council President Bob Meffley (R-1) could have used a sledgehammer to gavel a Council meeting to order on Tuesday (9/7/2021) when an unruly member of the local Republican Central Committee launched a loud personal attack. But the volume of his wooden gavel, although forceful, was nothing compared to the belligerent...
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Cecil County Schools to Require Masks for Students, Staff to Keep Schools Open Despite High COVID Rates, Low Vaccinations; 2 Politicians Fuel Anti-Mask Furor

August 25, 2021

Cecil County Public Schools (CCPS) will require students and staff to wear protective masks indoors, and on school buses, when classes resume on 9/1/2021, Schools Superintendent Jeff Lawson announced Wednesday (8/25/2021) in a video posted online. The masking rules are in response to high rates of COVID-19 infections in the county and rising counts...
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New Cecil County Council Attorney, Chip MacLeod, Brings Deep Experience—and Stiff Spine—to County Legal Matters

July 15, 2021

NEWS ANALYSIS The Cecil County Council has hired Charles “Chip” MacLeod– a Chestertown lawyer with decades of experience in local government and the founder of the Clean Chesapeake Coalition that has fought for sediment cleanup at the Conowingo Dam– as the new County Council attorney. And in his first appearance at the 7/13/2021 Council...
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