The Voxel theater arrives in Baltimore’s Charles Village after $2.6M renovation, ‘a labor of love’

Christopher Ashworth remembers the day he got the idea to open a theater in Baltimore. “I was walking down Guilford Avenue and it came to me,” he said of the project begun five years ago. That dream was fulfilled this week when The Voxel, a black-box theater incubator and teaching center, opened at 25th and Charles streets. (Balt. Sun)

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Pentagon drops opposition to new rules that would further restrict tech sales to Huawei

The Pentagon has dropped its objections to a Commerce Department proposal to further restrict U.S. technology sales to Chinese telecom giant Huawei, raising the odds that the proposals will advance, people familiar with the matter said. The Department of Defense had previously opposed Commerce’s recommendation, saying it would ultimately hurt U.S. semiconductor companies, which the Pentagon relies on to help produce cutting-edge military tech. (Wash. Post)

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Port of Baltimore had a record-breaking 2019 with plans to grow

The Port of Baltimore handled 43.6 million tons of international cargo in 2019 — a new record for the combined amount moved through the state- and privately-owned marine terminals. The high figure was boosted by an increase in the number of containers, as well as the high number of cars and trucks handled at the port, according to a Wednesday release. Officials are confident those numbers will continue to rise in coming years as several expansion projects are completed and come online. (Balt. Bus. Journal)

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Commerce Secretary worries Md. won't be 'in the game' if state kills incentives

Maryland Secretary of Commerce Kelly Schulz was fired up Wednesday as she implored state lawmakers to back off of a plan to eliminate various economic incentives used to attract and retain businesses. Schulz tossed aside her scripted talking points to address what she said is "a big misconception about what we do at the Department of Commerce." (Balt. Bus. Journal)

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Baltimore Mayor Pugh used boutique co-owned with city comptroller to hide illegal donations, prosecutors say

Former Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh didn’t only use Healthy Holly LLC as a conduit for illegal contributions to her 2016 mayoral campaign, according to a sentencing memorandum prosecutors filed Thursday in federal court in Baltimore. She also arranged for money to flow through another side business, 2 Chic Boutique, a Pigtown consignment shop she co-owned with longtime City Comptroller Joan Pratt and two other women with ties to city government. (Balt. Sun)

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McClatchy, one of the nation’s largest newspaper publishers, files for bankruptcy

McClatchy, one of the nation’s largest newspaper publishers, filed for bankruptcy protection Thursday, another harbinger of America’s deepening local-news crisis. The Chapter 11 filing will allow the Sacramento-based company to keep its 30 newspapers afloat while it reorganizes more than $700 million in debt, 60 percent of which would be eliminated. (Wash. Post)

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Hunt Valley office building changes hands for $39.1M

When Demetrius Smith went to prison in 2008 for a murder he didn’t commit, a jailhouse informant was a damning witness. Another exonerated man, Clarence Shipley Jr. of Baltimore, spent 27 years in prison ― after a suspect arrested in a series of vehicle thefts falsely fingered him as a killer. And the city of Baltimore paid out $9 million to another innocent man, James Owens, who spent two decades in prison. (Balt. Sun)

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Ravens raising ticket prices for first time since 2017, but no plans for another hike in 2021

It just became a little more expensive to watch Lamar Jackson at M&T Bank Stadium. In a letter sent to season-ticket holders last week, the Ravens announced that they are raising ticket prices for the first time since 2017 and just the second time in seven years. The average ticket price increase is 6.45%, with some areas in the stadium having a higher rate bump and others a lower one. “To achieve our collective goals, we must continue to stay competitive with other NFL teams, both in terms of the revenue we generate and in our spending on players we want in purple,” senior vice president of ticket sales and operations Baker Koppelman wrote in the letter, which was reviewed by The Baltimore Sun. (Balt. Sun)

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