City/County Digest


In Baltimore City

O'Malley to hold first forum for public since snowstorm

In the wake of the Great Snow of 2003, and the rain and melt that took a toll on city streets and services, Mayor Martin O'Malley will ask city residents to tell him tonight, "How are we doing so far?"

O'Malley will hold an "open dialogue" from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at Edmondson-Westside High School, 501 Athol Ave. The forum, which the mayor holds once a month, encourages residents to express their opinions on city government's performance.

Residents also may express their opinions on problems in their neighborhoods. Members of the mayor's Cabinet will attend the meeting.

2 public hearings planned to discuss new council map

Plans for two public hearings to discuss redrawing City Council district lines were announced at last night's council meeting.

The first hearing will take place at 5 p.m. tomorrow in the council chambers on the fourth floor of City Hall. The second will be held at 6 p.m. Thursday in the auditorium of City College at 33rd Street and The Alameda. The meetings were scheduled for last week but were postponed because of the record snowfall.

A voter referendum last year requires that the council's representation be changed from six, three-member districts to 14 single-member districts. Last month, Mayor Martin O'Malley submitted a redistricting plan, and the council has 60 days to amend it or pass a different one. If the council has taken no action after 60 days, O'Malley's plan will take effect and that map would be used for subsequent elections.

Grubman named chairman of performing arts group

The board of directors for the Baltimore Center for the Performing Arts announced yesterday the election of Eric P. Grubman, a former co-president of Constellation Energy, as the group's chairman.

Grubman succeeds Frank Bramble, who recently resigned as chairman after seven years but who will remain as a director. Effective March 11, the organization will change its name to the Hippodrome Foundation Inc., named for the 2,250-seat Hippodrome Theater that is being renovated.

The theater's $65 million construction is 50 percent complete, and the theater is expected to open Feb. 10 next year. The project will create a new performing arts center by renovating three historic buildings - the Western National Bank, the Eutaw Savings Bank and the original Hippodrome Theater - and erecting a new building at Baltimore and Eutaw streets.

In Baltimore County

Recycling pickup halted; trash must be left at curb

TOWSON - Because of last week's heavy snow, collection of recyclables in Baltimore County has been suspended until further notice, the Bureau of Solid Waste Management said yesterday.

Trash will be picked up on passable roads, the bureau said, but must be set out at the front curb. Refuse left in alleys will not be collected.

Residents urged to clear walks for schoolchildren

TOWSON - Baltimore County officials urged residents and business owners yesterday to clear remaining snow and ice on sidewalks that could pose a safety hazard to schoolchildren.

Unshoveled walks force children to walk in the street; large mounds of snow make it difficult for drivers to see students, and for students to see oncoming vehicles. Schools opened two hours late yesterday after being closed last week.

Officials also ask motorists to report dangerous potholes by calling the Bureau of Highways at 410-887-3560.

Rep. Cardin to open office at Arbutus library branch

ARBUTUS - Rep. Benjamin L. Cardin will open a community office at the Arbutus library at 10 a.m. Monday.

At the opening, residents can meet the congressman, talk with district staff and learn about available services. The office will be open at 10 a.m. the first Monday of every month.

The library is at 1581 Sulphur Spring Road.

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