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Week in review: 8/19/11

Ft. McHenry added to free bus route

Expansion of the 21-bus Charm City Circulator to include the Fort McHenry Monument and National Shrine will take place soon — in time for the War of 1812 bicentennial celebration in Baltimore. A $1.5 million federal transportation grant will cover 65 percent of the costs of the “Star Spangled Banner Route.”

Closius offers UB plan

At the suggestion of interim successor F. Michael Higginbotham, former University of Baltimore School of Law Dean Phillip J. Closius has proposed a nine-point plan to resolve financial issues between the law school and university that led Closius to resign.

Investors sue Grand Prix

Steve Wehner, whose idea it was to bring auto racing to Baltimore, has filed a nearly $750,000 complaint against the organizers of the Baltimore Grand Prix, alleging that Baltimore Racing Development is behind in payments to him. Wehner’s attorney also filed a complaint, for $313,250, for another early investor and said he would file an injunction to freeze some advance ticket sales money.

Casino MBE rules eased

The state Video Lottery Facility Location Commission approved on Wednesday the easing of minority business participation goals for would-be casino developers in Baltimore and Western Maryland.

Next St. Joseph CEO

Charles W. Neumann will take over as president and CEO of Towson-based St. Joseph Medical Center on Aug. 23. Neumann will replace Jeffrey K. Norman, who resigned.

Harassment lawsuit settled

After a five-year legal battle, the Baltimore Board of Estimates approved a $200,000 payout Wednesday to settle a female electrician’s harassment lawsuit. The woman was to receive $65,000, with the remaining $135,000 going to legal fees and expenses.

Culinary college saved

Baltimore International College’s hospitality and culinary arts programs will soon be taken over by Virginia-based Stratford University, officials announced Monday, in a deal struck after the Baltimore school’s loss of accreditation.

Murder retrial rejected

A judge’s failure to investigate why a murder defendant wanted to change lawyers was not grounds for a new trial, the Court of Appeals held Monday, reversing a Court of Special Appeals decision.

1st Mariner struggles

In a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, First Mariner Bancorp said net losses and declines in deposits, combined with an increase in bad loans, put the company further behind as it tries to raise capital. It remains well below the ratios required by state and federal regulators.