DAYBREAK DAILY: O'Malley miffed about Baltimore's crime-fighting efforts

ABC7 WEATHER: Partly sunny with highs in the low 80s.

‘GOOD MORNING WASHINGTON’: Among the reports – 13 hurt in mass shooting in Chicago; much more, beginning at 4:30 a.m. M-F.

O’MALLEY MIFFED: Of crime rates in Baltimore, per the Baltimore Sun, “Gov. Martin O'Malley says he is concerned that Baltimore has stalled in its efforts to reduce crime, emphasizing that arrest rates have continued to fall as declines in violence have leveled off. The governor has brought up the connection between the two trends several times in recent months, appearing twice at meetings of city crime fighters as Baltimore grappled with a violent summer.

“O'Malley pointed out that "half as many offenders were being arrested now, compared to ten years ago, and the city is now seeing drive-by shootings in broad daylight," according to the minutes of one gathering. Next time, the governor brought a slideshow, titled "Work Left to Do." One slide showed the divergence between the number of violent crimes and the number of arrests.”

MEANWHILE: Closer to home, per the Frederick News-Post, “A narcotics task force focused entirely on dismantling drug crimes in Frederick County is becoming dismantled itself — a result of Maryland State Police pulling out of the effort. Four Maryland state troopers have been pulled from the task force and one remaining trooper will leave in October, state police spokesman Greg Shipley told The Frederick News-Post.

“Five troopers and seven Frederick County Sheriff's Office deputies made up the task force, now referred to as a "sheriff's office task force," said Sheriff Chuck Jenkins. Shipley said troopers who had been on the task force will still work from the Frederick Barrack but will be "reassigned" to work on multijurisdictional investigations rather than local issues.”

ONE, TWO, THREE: What are we fighting for?,” per the Richmond Times-Dispatch, “A majority of Virginia voters — including those in military households — want to avert a military strike on Syria over reports of chemical weapons use and back having international monitors take control of the weapons, a new poll shows. Further, the state’s voters disapprove of the way President Barack Obama is handling the Syria situation, 54 percent to 38 percent, and they disapprove of his job performance overall, 52 percent to 44 percent.

“It’s the lowest job-approval rating Obama has posted in Virginia in two years, according to the second portion of a Quinnipiac University poll released Thursday. Gov. Bob McDonnell’s job-approval rating remained virtually unchanged from August, sliding a percentage point to 46 percent approval, with 36 percent disapproval.”

COST OF LIVING: Or something like that, per Gazette.Net, “The salary for Montgomery County’s next County Council members could be 20 percent more than it is now, under a proposal expected to be presented to the council on Tuesday. The county executive’s pay could rise about 5 percent. Some of those increases are recommended by a committee that’s required to study local salaries every four years.

“But some of the additional money already is guaranteed, through cost-of-living increases for the council and executive already set to take effect in December, unrelated to the salary study. The study commission also recommended that raises in the county’s sheriff and state’s attorney salaries match a consumer price index.”

MAYHEM IN CHICAGO: Just the facts, per the Chicago Tribune, “Thirteen people, including a 3-year-old boy who suffered a gunshot wound to the head, were shot at a Chicago park in the Back of the Yards neighborhood Thursday night, authorities said.

“. . . Police said later a total of 13 people were shot, the boy, two teens, and 10 adults, with the boy the most seriously wounded. The boy suffered a gunshot wound to the head at an ear that exited through his mouth, and was in critical condition at Mount Sinai Hospital, police said.”

NAVY YARD SHOOTINGS: Details keep emerging, per the Washington Post, “The gunman who killed 12 people at the Washington Navy Yard on Monday began his rampage by heading directly to the fourth floor, where he shot people who worked with him, and authorities are investigating whether a workplace issue sparked the killings, according to law enforcement officials and witness accounts.

“People in the department where Aaron Alexis was working had concerns about his job performance, and investigators are looking into whether those concerns escalated last week, the officials said.”

AND THIS: Unsettling, per The Hill, “Radios for federal firefighters and police officers failed during Monday’s mass shooting at Washington’s Navy Yard, according to union representatives for first responders. Union officials said police and firefighters resorted to using their cellphones and radios from D.C.’s emergency responders to communicate with each other during the attack.”

IRANIAN SHIFT?: Maybe, per the New York Times, “Iran’s leaders, seizing on perceived flexibility in a private letter from President Obama, have decided to gamble on forging a swift agreement over their nuclear program with the goal of ending crippling sanctions, a prominent adviser to the Iranian leadership said Thursday.

“The adviser, who participated in top-level discussions of the country’s diplomatic strategy, said that Mr. Obama’s letter, delivered to Iran’s new president, Hassan Rouhani, about three weeks ago, promised relief from sanctions if Tehran demonstrated a willingness to “cooperate with the international community, keep your commitments and remove ambiguities.” The text of the letter has not been made public, but the adviser described its contents in an interview in his office on Thursday.”

POLITICO PLAY: “Dismissive sighs, weary eye-rolls, mocking rejoinders: these have been the favored tactics of Hillary Rodham Clinton’s team of aides and allies when confronted with questions about the state of her thinking on whether to run for president again in 2016. The message to reporters and the Washington political class is clear: you guys need to give it a rest.

“And the explanation, at least when she first returned to private life last winter, seemed plausible enough: After years of nonstop work as first lady, senator, presidential candidate, and globe-trotting secretary of state, she was entitled to a good long rest, to some semblance of a normal life, and to a holiday from hyperventilating speculation about a presidential election that is still years in the future. But the notion that Hillary Clinton was embracing anything like a sedate life — or taking more than a momentary pause from increasingly obvious preparations for a presidential run — turned out to be, in the phrase Bill Clinton once turned on Barack Obama, a fairy tale.”

D.C. DOINGS: On your mark, per City Paper, “The 2014 at-large D.C. Council race will get its first challenger Saturday when Robert White, a former aide to Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton, kicks off his campaign as an independent candidate.

“White, a 31-year-old Brightwood Park resident, left his job as Norton's policy aide after five years to run for the seat. White tells LL he was inspired to run by what he sees as a lack of leadership in District politics, citing the Council's handling of the failed Large Retailer Accountability Act as an example (White wouldn't say how he would have voted on the bill, though).”

SAVING A SEAGULL: With photos, per the Virginian-Pilot, “You could say it was one bird coming to the rescue of another. A seagull, tangled in power lines, had been stuck for days high above the water near the Lesner Bridge in Virginia Beach.

“On Thursday, about 8:40 a.m., a helicopter swooped in beside the lines so a man perched on the edge of a platform could grab the bird. Then they flew away together. The bird was was rescued and given to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, according to Dominion Virginia Power spokeswoman Bonita Billingsley Harris.”

SPORTS, BRIEFLY: Nationals beat Miami 3-2.

TRENDING ON ABC7 FACEBOOK: “Pope Francis is warning that the Catholic Church's moral edifice might "fall like a house of cards" if it doesn't balance its divisive rules about abortion, gays and contraception. In an interview, Francis offers a vision of the church that contrasts sharply with that of John Paul II and Benedict XVI.”

NEWSTALK: Among today’s guests (10 a.m., NewsChannel 8) is Libertarian candidate for Virginia governor Robert Sarvis.

--Skip Wood