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BC-MD--Greater Mid-Atlantic News Digest 1:30 pm, MD

March 21, 2019

Hello! Here’s a look at how AP’s general news coverage is shaping up in the Mid-Atlantic, covering North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland and Delaware. Questions about coverage plans are welcome and should be directed to 919-510-8937, 202-641-9660, 410-837-8315, 804-643-6646 or metro@ap.org. AP-Mid-Atlantic News Editor Steve McMillan can be reached at 804-643-6646 or smcmillan@ap.org.

A reminder this information is not for publication or broadcast, and these coverage plans are subject to change. Expected stories may not develop, or late-breaking and more newsworthy events may take precedence. Advisories and digests will keep you up to date. For up-to-the minute information on AP’s coverage, visit Coverage Plan at newsroom.ap.org

All times are Eastern.

Some TV and radio stations will receive shorter APNewsNow versions of the stories below, along with all updates.

TODAY’S TOP STORIES

NORTH CAROLINA

PRISON HEPATITIS LAWSUIT

A federal judge is ordering North Carolina prison authorities to quit denying expensive medicines from most inmates believed to carry a potentially deadly blood-borne infection. By EMERY DALESIO. UPCOMING: By 4 p.m.

NORTH CAROLINA-REDRAWING AMERICA

While North Carolina Democrats made sizable gains at the legislature in November that helped end the Republicans’ veto-proof power in the House and Senate, the GOP still continues to hold majorities in each chamber. The Republicans’ structural benefits by controlling district boundaries, however, may have helped them avoid a worse outcome. An Associated Press analysis of election results using a test favored by redistricting reform advocates shows Republicans won at least six more state House seats than were expected based on their average share of the vote in all 120 races. BY GARY ROBERTSON. UPCOMING: By 3 p.m.

REDRAWING AMERICA-IMBALANCE OF POWER

Democrats won more votes, regained control of the U.S. House and flipped hundreds of seats in state legislatures during the 2018 elections. It was, by most accounts, a good year for Democrats. Yet it wasn’t as bad as it could have been for Republicans. That’s because in more states than not, Republicans continued to benefit from a built-in advantage that prevented deeper losses or helped them hold on to power, according to a new mathematical analysis by The Associated Press. It’s one of the same analytical tests cited in a political gerrymandering case being argued next week before the U.S. Supreme Court. By David A. Lieb. SENT: 1,200 words. Photos. Video. Video graphic.

IN BRIEF:

_INSTAGRAM TEEN-MARIJUANA: A North Carolina teen who went by “itslilhotgirl” on Instagram is accused of using the social media platform to sell marijuana.

_ CADBURY BUNNY: The new Cadbury bunny is an English Bulldog named Henri.

_ WOMAN SLAIN: A man has been convicted of raping and killing a North Carolina artist as she was moving out of an apartment in Washington, D.C.

_ GREASE SPILL: The road rose up to grease some motorists in North Carolina after a tractor-trailer overturned and spilled its load on the highway.

_STATE WORKER RAISES: Lawmakers in North Carolina say the state Department of Transportation misinterpreted a state budget provision and gave about 5,300 workers pay raises as high as 65 percent.

VIRGINIA

GOP TRAIN ACCIDENT

Federal investigators say a trash truck driver was likely under the influence of marijuana and anti-seizure medication when his vehicle was struck by an Amtrak train carrying Republican lawmakers in Virginia last year. By BEN FINLEY. SENT: 130 Words. Upcoming: 400 words by 4 p.m.

VIRGINIA-PENSION FUND

Virginia’s pension fund is in a worse position to handle a market meltdown than it was before the Great Recession more than a decade ago, according to a recent state report. That’s despite a 10-year bull market and pension reform efforts by lawmakers to make the fund more resilient. By ALAN SUDERMAN. SENT: 800 words.

IN BRIEF:

_SKYLINE DRIVE CLEANUP: Crews are finally digging out a 40-mile stretch of Virginia’s scenic Skyline Drive after a series of winter storms closed it for more than four months.

_ CHARTER BUS CRASH-VIRGINIA: Virginia highway safety officials were already investigating the safety of an exit ramp along Interstate 95 when a charter bus overturned along it Tuesday, killing two people and injuring more.

_ TAMPON TAX: Virginians will soon be paying fewer taxes on tampons and diapers.

_ VIRGINIA-CANDIDATE FRAUD: A former congressional candidate in Virginia says she running for Congress again even though she’ll be in federal prison.

_ VIRGINIA-INMATE DEATH: A $3 million settlement for the family of a mentally ill man who died in jail after being arrested for stealing $5 in snacks has been approved by a judge who called his death “shameful.”

MARYLAND/DELAWARE

XGR-COMMUNITY COLLEGE FUNDING

The state Senate votes on a bill allowing Delaware’s community college system to issue bonds that would be paid off by an annual budget earmark, just hours after the proposal was introduced and sent to the floor without a committee hearing. By RANDALL CHASE. UPCOMING: By 6 p.m.

MARYLAND-HOSPITAL BOARD

The president and CEO of the University of Maryland Medical System is taking a temporary leave of absence, after reports that about a third of the system’s board has received compensation for their businesses through the network’s contracts. By BRIAN WITTE. UPCOMING: By 3 p.m.

IN BRIEF:

_TEENS FOOTBALL-HAZING RAPE: A judge has ruled that a 15-year-old accused of instigating the rape of fellow members of his Maryland high school football team will be tried as a juvenile.

_ PARK CLOSURE-SAFETY CONCERNS: A city councilman in Dover, Delaware, is calling for a local park to close indefinitely after the body of a Wesley College student was found there.

_ COMMUNITY COLLEGE FUNDING: After putting the brakes on controversial legislation to impose a statewide property tax to benefit Delaware’s community college system, Democratic lawmakers are trying to ram through an alternative plan to achieve the same goal through the legislative budget process.

_UNCLE KILLED-AUNT SHOT: Police say a man accused of killing his uncle and wounding his aunt in a shooting near Washington has been arrested after driving a golf cart to a hospital.

SPORTS

BKN--TIMBERWOLVES-HORNETS

CHARLOTTE, N.C. _ The Hornets are on the outside looking in at the Eastern Conference playoff picture and are in need of a win against the Timberwolves. By Steve Reed. 650 words, photos. Game starts at 7 p.m. EDT

HKN--LIGHTNING-HURRICANES

RALEIGH, N.C. _ The Tampa Bay Lightning visit the Carolina Hurricanes in a possible preview of a first-round playoff series. Tampa Bay has clinched the Presidents Trophy while Carolina is trying to secure its first playoff berth since 2009. By Kyle Glaser. UPCOMING: 500 words, photos from 7 p.m. start.

BKW--NCAA-CHARLOTTE PREVIEW

CHARLOTTE, N.C. _ Fourth seed South Carolina will be hosting a pod of games, but they’ll do so in Charlotte, N.C., since their home court in Columbia, S.C. is being used by the men. Coach Dawn Staley is hoping that inconvenience won’t affect her team against Belmont in round one. Fifth seed Florida State faces Bucknell in the other game Friday. By Steve Reed. UPCOMING. 600 words by 6 p.m. EDT

BKC--NCAA-THE DIRTY BRACKET

SALT LAKE CITY _ We can’t tell you who is going to be in the Final Four, but here’s a list of scandal-plagued programs participating in March Madness _ and taking millions out of the NCAA Tournament. Every region has multiple teams dealing with infractions, poor sportsmanship and outright crimes. By National Writer Eddie Pells. UPCOMING: 1,400 words, photos.

BKC--NCAA-SOUTH REGION PREVIEW

COLUMBIA, S.C. _ After a year of answering questions about being the victim of the biggest upset in NCAA Tournament history, Virginia finally gets a chance to show it can handle its business against Gardner-Webb on Friday. By Jeffrey Collins. UPCOMING: 700 words by 7 p.m. EDT.

BKC--NCAA-EAST REGION PREVIEW

COLUMBIA, S.C. _ Zion Williamson and top-seeded Duke, after an enthralling run to the ACC Tournament title, look to start another run to the NCAA championship when it kicks off tournament play against 16th-seeded North Dakota State in the East Region Friday. By Pete Iacobelli. UPCOMING, 600 words by 6 p.m.

BKC--NCAA-BELMONT-MARYLAND

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. _ After getting into the NCAA Tournament with an at-large bid and winning its First Four game, No. 11 seed Belmont is back in action against No. 6 Maryland in the Midwest Regional. By Paul Newberry. UPCOMING: 650 words, photos. Game starts at approximately 3:10 p.m. EDT.

BKC--NCAA-OLD DOMINION-PURDUE

HARTFORD, Conn. _ No. 3 seed Purdue, which was upset in its opening game of the Big Ten Tournament, faces No. 14 seed Old Dominion in the South Regional. By Ralph Russo. Upcoming, 600 words, photos. Developing from approx 10 p.m. tip.

___

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