Ms. Mayor, put your house in order before inviting others to live here

Mayor Stephanie Rawlings Blake needs to do some serious soul searching.

In the past four months she has sounded more like a despot than a democratically elected mayor. How can she refuse to pay damages to lead paint victims, renege on a $150,000 payment the city agreed to pay to settle a lawsuit against the police department, or allow the Department of Public Works to make excuses for not collecting millions in unpaid water bills?

Her house is not in order. She has lost sight of one of her signature initiatives — enticing 10,000 more families to live in the city. Why would anyone want to come to Baltimore to live?

City government needs some serious redress. It's time for Ms. Rawlings -Blake to concentrate on the first order of business: Creating a city government and agencies that can stand up to evaluation and assessment.

That was the promise she campaigned on during the last election, and the mayor has the ability, expertise and acumen to accomplish it. But does she still have the will?

Betty Ciesla

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