FY2023 Budget Passes Unanimously
Today, after the City Council’s Ways & Means Committee held 83 hours of hearings covering 45 different agencies, the City Council concluded Baltimore City’s FY2023 budget hearing process, unanimously approving the City’s $4.11 billion budget ($3.32 billion operating and $793 million capital). I would like to acknowledge the hard work and partnership of my colleagues on the Ways & Means Committee and members of the City Council at-large, as well as the Administration. Over the past few months I have been adamant about my desire to reorient this budget process back towards addressing the prime concerns of our residents: restoring core city services, addressing waste at the agency level, and confronting the violent crime plaguing our streets. During budget hearings, we were able to accomplish exactly that by:
- Compelling the Police Commissioner Harrison to request additional sworn law enforcement assistance from our federal and state law enforcement partners;
- Driving progress toward resumption of weekly curbside recycling collection through a written set of commitments with timelines to better position DPW to resume the service in the future; and
- Working toward ensuring the historical footprint of ArtScape remains in the 11th District in Bolton Hill and Mount Vernon while allowing continued expansion in Station North, through targeted cuts to BOPA’s budget.
As we continue to grapple with brazen levels of crime across the City, we all need to stay focused on our primary responsibility as elected leaders: the safety and security of families and neighborhoods. It is important to remember that ending violent crime starts in the streets with the men and women of BPD, who will continue to rebuild trust with the people of Baltimore; and ends with effective prosecutions aided by the executive agencies expected to coordinate and make available any and all resources necessary to achieve our goal of reducing crime in Baltimore. While almost every agency has some role in helping in that effort, we need those that are specifically funded for public safety to be more effective and act with a greater sense of urgency. That includes the Mayor’s Office of Neighborhood Safety and Engagement (MONSE) and the State’s Attorney’s Office (SAO), both of which are tasked with significant roles in the overall crime reduction plan. We can’t afford to wait for years for results – the citizens of Baltimore expect and deserve relief from the relentless level of crime.
While we all have a duty not to repeat injustices of yesterday, it’s the responsibility of this legislative body and its members to hold these entities accountable and demand answers and action when little progress seems evident.
Public Safety Announcement – Budget Hearings
The City Council’s Ways & Means Committee is preparing to hold FY2023 budget hearings during the week of May 31 – June 07, 2022. Baltimore City is on a record pace for homicides this year. I intend to ensure this issue is treated with the same sense of urgency that our communities demand and expect during the upcoming budget hearings. As such, the following letters were issued to the appropriate agencies in advance of their budget hearings.
2022.05.19 – BPD – FY2023 Budget Letter (Costello)
2022.05.19 – MONSE – FY2023 Budget Letter (Costello)
BGE / MTA Natural Gas Main Installation to Begin in Riverside
BGE / MTA Natural Gas Main Installation to Begin in Riverside
SUMMARY: At the request of the Maryland Transit Administration (MTA), BGE will soon begin a multiple-month long project to install a new natural gas main to service the MTA’s MARC Train Yard located on the south side of the community (directly south of Riverside Park and Southside Shopping Plaza). The work, limited to portions of only five streets (as outlined below), will entail street cuts, installing new gas main pipes, and covering the street cuts daily (either asphalt or steel plates). Work on each affected street is expected to take two to three weeks. During these periods, some on-street parking restrictions will be posted.
WHO IS INVOVLED: This a BGE project to connect new gas service for one of their customers, the MTA. The gas main contractor will be Stella May – they will be responsible for street cuts (digging a trench), installing the new gas main, and laying down temporary asphalt / steel plates at the end of each work day. A paving / resurfacing contractor will be selected by BGE as the project progresses – they will be responsible for completing final restoration of the street after Stella May completes the new gas main installation. Assedo is a communications firm that BGE has hired to assist with communication to the community – they will be responsible for notifying residents and businesses who are directly affected and answering general questions from individual community members.
AFFECTED STREETS: This work will be limited to the following streets and specific blocks
- Lawrence St (from Harvey St to E Fort Ave)
- E Fort Ave (from Lawrence St to Boyle St)
- Boyle St (from E Fort Ave to E Heath St)
- E Heath St (from Boyle St to Webster St)
- Webster St (from E Heath St to past E Barney St at southern-end of Webster St
SCHEDULE AND SEQUENCING: The project is scheduled to begin on Tuesday, Feb 22 and progress in the following sequence, although this may be subject to change, with notice provided to affected residents and businesses.
- Webster St to E Barney St – 1 Week
- E Barney St to E Heath St – 1 Week
- E Heath to Boyle St – 1 Week
- Boyle St to E Fort Ave – 2 Weeks
- E Fort Ave from Boyle St to Lawrence St – 2 Weeks
- Lawrence St from E Fort Ave to Harvey St – 2 Weeks
- The service at the end of Webster St – 1 Week
PARKING RESTRICTIONS: We will work with BGE and the Department of Transportation (DOT) to ensure as minimal disruptions to parking as possible. Parking restrictions will be in place and posted at least 72 hours in advance of taking effect. Please be sure to carefully follow any posted parking restrictions as failing to do so could result in citation, relocation, or tow.
COMMUNICATION TO THE COMMUNITY: BGE has provided the Riverside Neighborhood Association (RNA), State Delegate Luke Clippinger, and Councilman Eric T Costello the a Outreach Plan to the community which Assedo will be responsible for executing. This Outreach Plan was a result of a conference call between the above parties on Feb 11 to ensure a clear understanding of the scope and schedule of the project for those impacted in the community.
POINTS OF CONACT: for questions about the work on your street, please direct to:
- Assedo – Lineta Duren – LinetaD@assedollc.com – (410) 618-0102
For other questions or if you do not receive a timely reply, you are welcome to contact:
- Assedo – Malik Jordan – MalikJ@assedollc.com – (410) 618-0103
- Riverside Neighborhood Association – RNABaltimore@gmail.com
- Delegate Luke Clippinger – Luke.Clippinger@house.state.md.us – (410) 841-3488
- Councilman Eric T. Costello – firstname.lastname@example.org – (410) 396-4816
Thank you for your patience and cooperation as MTA makes improvements to its MARC Train facility.