Anthony Batts

New Baltimore Police Commissioner Anthony Batts, with Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake. (Karl Merton Ferron, Baltimore Sun / August 28, 2012)

The Baltimore City Council's executive nominations committee will hold a confirmation hearing tonight for Anthony W. Batts, Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake's pick to be the city's next police commissioner.

Tonight's hearing begins at 5 p.m. and will air on the city's public access cable channel, TV 25. 

Batts' contract has been signed, and he's been on the job for a few weeks. He spent 27 years with the Long Beach Police Department, before leading the Oakland Police Department for two years. The Sun wrote a lengthy profile of Batts last month. 

If approved by the nominations committee, which consists of a fraction of the full council, Batts' nomination would be sent to the full council as soon as next Monday for a full vote. He is not expected to appear before the full council. 

Batts has already made some moves - reinstating the rank of captain, which had been in the works under his predecessor Frederick H. Bealefeld III, and he and city officials talked a high-ranking commander out of retirement. Commanders also say he's putting an emphasis on foot patrols and intelligence. 

This month, attorneys in Oakland urged that the federal government take over control of the department there, citing comments from Batts among a long trail of "sorry broken promises" stemming from a decade-old lawsuit settlement.

jfenton@baltsun.com