The South Baltimore Parking Study, commissioned with Casino Impact Aid, covering the neighborhoods of Federal Hill, Federal Hill South, Otterbein, Riverside, Sharp Leadenhall, and South Baltimore is now available online here: Parking Study Report_Final_09-20-2017
TESTIMONY TO THE COMMISSION ON INNOVATION & EXCELLENCE IN EDUCATION
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 12, 2017
Mr. Chairman and Members of the Commission on Innovation & Excellence in Education,
My name is Eric Costello and I am the Councilman for Baltimore City’s 11th District, which includes the Central Business District, Downtown’s Westside, Central West Baltimore, Midtown, and the South Baltimore Peninsula. I also Chair the City Council’s Budget & Appropriations Committee.
In light of yesterday’s tragic events, I have sent a letter to the City Solicitor requesting his opinion on the legal requirements that must be addressed in order to remove, relocate, or reinterpret existing confederate monuments as well as the Roger B. Taney Monument. You may view the entire letter here: 2017.08.13 – Legal Clarification on Confederate Monuments
Every Baltimore Child Deserves This
June 26, 2017 | By Mary T. Phelan
Children in the West Baltimore neighborhood of Madison Park will have a special place to play this summer and all the seasons ahead after the Crispus Attucks Recreation Center reopened June 19, thanks in large part to the University of Maryland School of Social Work (SSW) and its Promise Heights initiative.
After 49 1/2 hours of Committee hearings and dozens of hours of negotiations, Council President Jack Young and Councilman Eric Costello, Chair of the Budget and Appropriations Committee, publicly announced an agreement with Mayor Pugh’s Administration on the FY2018 budget. This budget articulates both of the City Council’s and the Mayor’s shared priorities for additional funding for education and programming for our youth. More information on the agreement is outlined in the letter below from Council President Young and Councilman Costello to the Mayor on June 8, 2017:
The following Fiscal Year 2018 budget publications are now available online:
The City Council’s Budget & Appropriations Committee schedule for hearing the FY2018 budget is appended below and available for download here: Final Budget Schedule
The first meeting of the Biennial Audits Oversight Commission (BAOC) will be Wednesday, Feb 15, 5pm, at City Hall, in Council Chambers on the 4th Floor.
More information on the 1st meeting is available below:
- BAOC – Draft Agenda – outlines the agenda for meeting and the four votes that will take place;
- BAOC – Charter Amendment – a printout of Article 5 Section 11 of the Baltimore City Charter (amended in Nov 2016, established the BAOC);
- BAOC – Briefing Package – a summary of all findings and recommendations from the quadrennial audits for Group A; and
- Department of Finance’s Audits website – includes links to the audit products summarized in the aforementioned Briefing Package.
The BAOC is compromised of the following seven individuals: Councilman Eric T. Costello (Chair); Councilman Bill Henry; Acting Inspector General Stephen J. Lesniewski, Jr.; Councilman Leon Pinkett; Comptroller Joan Pratt; Finance Director Henry Raymond; and Council President Bernard C. “Jack” Young. Among other things, the BAOC is tasked with providing guidance and advice to the City Auditor in determining the scope of agency performance audits.
I am very disappointed with the conclusion that Cross St Market will not be revitalized. For a variety of reasons, Caves Valley Partners (CVP) has made the difficult decision to not move forward with the project. Dating back to my time as a community president, this was one of the top issues our neighborhood fought for. After being sworn in to office, it became a top priority of mine and I have worked tirelessly ever since to help get this project across the finish line.
Public-private partnerships on municipal markets are extremely complex and challenging. Funding must be cobbled together from multiple public and private sources and margins are extremely thin. The fact that CVP was the only team to respond to the RFP demonstrates truly how challenging this effort was.
I would like to thank the members of the Cross St Market Advisory Committee for selflessly volunteering your time and effort along the way, all with the best interest of our collective neighborhoods at heart. The Baltimore Public Markets Corporation should be commended for shifting their paradigm and embracing the public-private partnership model. Lastly, thank you to CVP and Arsh Mirmiran for giving your best effort. Despite how risky and financially unattractive this deal was, your willingness to try this far exceeded what should have been expected.
I am writing today with what is hopefully welcome news regarding the new water billing infrastructure fees. In short, if you have a $60.88 monthly infrastructure fee (due to having a 1″ water meter), it is being reduced to $28.22, resulting in monthly savings of $32.66, or annual savings of $391.92. While I recognize that the solution is not ideal, I believe it is far fairer and provides much needed relief. This will inevitably increase our ability to retain residents and help continue to grow our City. Please see below the following: 1) background on water billing changes; 2) impact on single family dwelling units; 3) steps I took to work with the Mayor’s Office and DPW; 4) details on the solution; and 5) next steps. Read more