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Top 5: ‘It was just so blatantly unfair to do what they did’

An IPO splash by a Baltimore tech company and a look at the upcoming General Assembly legislative session are among the most-read business stories of the week. But news of the potential seizure of vehicles from a Baltimore city agency topped the list. Here are the Top 5 most-read stories:

1. Sheriff to begin seizure process for Baltimore Housing Authority property to pay for lead paint judgment — by Melody Simmons

The Baltimore City Sheriff will begin the process of seizing nearly two dozen trucks, computers and other office supplies owned by the Housing Authority of Baltimore City Wednesday to auction and pay an outstanding lead paint poisoning judgment against the agency.

The process will identify and help appraise the property, held at 417 E. Fayette St., the address of the Housing Authority. Information collected will be used as part of one levy against the authority, which has been ordered to pay a total of nine judgments of nearly $12 million from state courts to victims of lead paint poisoning.

2. Baltimore-based Millennial Media files for $75M IPO — by Ben Mook

Mobile phone ad firm Millennial Media Inc. filed for an initial public offering on Thursday, valuing the Baltimore-based company’s stock at $75 million.

Millennial did not indicate which stock exchange it planned to be listed on and did not give a time frame for the public offering. The IPO has been expected since last year as the company continued to gain market share in the mobile advertising industry.

The company is led by former employees of Advertising.com, another Baltimore advertising technology startup that was sold to AOL in 2004 for $435 million.

3. $1.1B deficit, gas tax, gambling to dominate General Assembly — by Nicholas Sohr

With many long-simmering issues likely to come to a boil this year, lawmakers face a legislative session that will be dominated by Maryland’s lingering fiscal woes and an agenda full of unfinished business from years past.

The budget deficit stands at $1.1 billion, the governor and powerful legislators are advocating for an increase to the state’s gasoline tax, a showdown looms over expanded gambling, and the economy is still limping out of a crippling recession.

4. Roebuck unhappy with Alter’s plan — by Ben Mook

The publisher of the Baltimore Jewish Times, embroiled in a bitter Chapter 11 bankruptcy case, has filed a new plan that would shift most of the ownership to a new group of investors led by businessman Dr. Scott Rifkin.

The proposed reorganization is the latest effort of Alter Communications Inc. to exit bankruptcy. The court had ordered Alter and H.G. Roebuck & Son Inc., its creditor, to come up with a joint plan by year’s end. Alter’s plan, submitted to the U.S. Bankruptcy Court on Friday, was not a joint plan. Roebuck, the longtime former printer of the paper whose lawsuit against Alter prompted the bankruptcy filing, did not approve of the plan and on Monday called for a trustee to be appointed.

5. New ‘House of Cards’ to be filmed in Baltimore — by Nicholas Sohr

Netflix, the online movie and television service, has tapped Maryland as the backdrop for its first-ever venture into original dramatic programming, state film officials announced Thursday.

“House of Cards” will star Academy Award-winning actor Kevin Spacey and its pilot will be directed by David Fincher, whose recent credits include “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” and “The Social Network.”

The Maryland Film Office estimates the series of 13 hour-long episodes will spur $75 million in spending in the state and create more than 2,000 jobs for local crew, actors and extras

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