xml:space="preserve">
xml:space="preserve">
Advertisement

The rest of the state needs a say in running Baltimore

Now that the lid's blown off, it's time to think Baltimore City out of the tinderbox ("Could a state property tax cap stimulate Baltimore's economy?" July 2).

The fact that Baltimore has not only survived, but thrived, is purely due the strength of the foundation laid long ago by Mayor William Donald Schaefer. His legacy has endured the ineptness of all his successors, including Martin O'Malley. At least up to now.

Advertisement

As a direct result of Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake's perpetual poor judgment and activist State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby's rush to judgment, Baltimore has entered a death spiral, literally and figuratively, that if not irreversible is certainly irreparable in the foreseeable future. Best principles or not, any reasonable person could have seen that gangs would seize on space to destroy and terrorize and that demoralizing and disarming the police would further embolden them to ultimately take control, which is now nearly complete, if not in fact then in appearance, which is equally destructive. There is already evidence of long-term economic consequences as crime sores and less and less people, conventions and other investment come back to the city.

The last straw will be the usual Democrat's response of raising Baltimore City's taxes even more to offset the lost revenue, or asking for state and federal assistance to spread the pain to law abiding people even further removed, with no expectation of accountability, as evidenced by the hundreds of millions already spent with no discernible benefit. In fact, op-ed writer Louis Miserendino makes delivery of that prospect a measure of Gov. Larry Hogan's leadership. He mentions nothing about Baltimore City's leadership. Apparently he realizes there is none, and, given The Sun's pick of prospective challengers to Mayor Rawlings-Blake and particularly those most likely to succeed, he might even concede that under the status quo, that is not likely to change.

Advertisement

I believe that law abiding city residents and most Marylanders would agree that the situation calls for considering other alternatives to avoid what was once unthinkable for Detroit, including revoking Baltimore City's charter and returning it to the surrounding counties as suggested by another letter to the editor. After all, they are already picking up a big part of the tax burden, so why shouldn't they have representation as well? At the very least, there should be proportionate statewide representation on the City Council or creation of a state appointed oversight board with veto power. In fact, this is a national problem, as all our once great cities face similar problems due to an inability to elect credible leadership, as evidenced by Mayor Rawlings-Blake being sworn in as president of the U.S. conference of Mayors. What does The Sun think about putting those options to referendum to let the people of Maryland have a voice in saving our defining city?

Doude Glenn, Baltimore

Recommended on Baltimore Sun

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement