The greater impact to improving public safety is education and jobs.”

- Carl Stokes

Prevention, Intervention, Enforcement, and Trust will result in dramatic reductions in crime, from homicide to nuisance offenses. To sustain a safe environment in the long-term, we must look at the interrelationship between crime and education, jobs, and recreation. Looking at short-term solutions we will look to passing new gun laws, community policing, and getting repeat violent offenders and the bad cops off the streets.

For example, we cannot work together to implement effective crime prevention programs with a diminishing tax base. We cannot combat crime if taxpayers leave the city at the current rate. We must develop programs ranging from encouraging home ownership to changing the conditions of poverty and hopelessness that foster criminal activity. Unless we provide our children with adequate education that will prepare them for the future, we cannot divert them from the attractions of drugs and the resulting crime. We must recognize the interrelated nature of these issues.

Some of these ideas are not new to Baltimore, but never implemented. Community court, an idea that was funded in 1999 but discarded by then Mayor O’Malley. This concept has made a significant difference in recidivism and restitution to communities across the country.

Teen court and peer mediation are existing programs in Baltimore. How can those programs be expanded to reach more young people? The city needs to pitch in and peer mediation should be part of the school system.

Transform Baltimore’s public schools into effective institutions focused on teaching and learning to produce college- and career-ready students.”

  • Ensure that each school has a highly qualified, visionary leader with adequate resources to create and maintain a world-class school
  • Implement an engaging, innovative, rigorous curriculum that incorporates real-world and 21st century skills
  • 89% fourth grade proficiency by 2020
  • Provide college- and career-readiness academic pathways for all students, beginning in middle school
  • Utilize creative strategies for teacher and administrator recruitment, offering incentives for those who live in Baltimore City
  • Offer relevant, high quality, ongoing professional growth opportunities for teachers and administrators
  • Strengthen partnerships among all stakeholders to support school success
  • Learning environment that encourages and stimulates
  • Provide wrap-around resources for students and families
  • Mandatory extended day for 4-8 grades
  • Structuring Out of School Time programming to achieve academic excellence

Bringing Forth a Baltimore Renaissance.”

In my years of experience of reviewing plans for Economic Development, I thought the responsible thing to do at this pivotal time is to re-discover the true purpose of “Economic Development” for Baltimore.  This is important because the term is often used to persuade voters to think that Economic Development is all about big, flashy businesses, and the more the better.  Economic Development for Baltimore is about all of the characteristics that make up a healthy environment where people can live, work, play and rest.

Economic Development is about creating and maintaining balanced economies so that people, all people, may thrive and live healthy balanced lives.  Economic Development is about small business as well as big business.  It is about healthy communities that include arts and entertainment.  It is about neighborhood re-development.  It is about relevant education and preparing a skilled workforce that will have access to practical jobs and compensation.  It is about implementing environmental sustainability, advocating for urban design practices that are inspiring, and budgeting resources for recreation and leisure.  It is about promoting physical health and life safety for all citizens.

Now, let’s look at Baltimore and ask these questions.

  • Does Baltimore have communities that are devastated by blight and dysfunctional infrastructure?
  • Do we have residents with a sub-standard mode of living that fails to foster economic growth and opportunity?
  • Does Baltimore have residents who cannot afford to simultaneously pay for the basics—water, electricity, food and healthcare?

Unfortunately, the answer to each question is a resounding “Yes”.  Baltimore City has communities with some of the same characteristics of an under-developed or war-torn community.  These are what I call “vulnerable” communities.

It is important to note that vulnerable communities are not only the most predisposed areas to crime, pollution, sickness, blight and despair, but are actually the most expensive areas for our City to support.

We need solutions for Baltimore’s vulnerable communities as well as our more stable areas.  My plan for Economic Development is to implement strategies that will strengthen all of Baltimore.

I believe that the solution is to get back to the true purpose of Economic Development.  We need to bring balance to vulnerable communities that have been neglected and underdeveloped.  My plan will create communities that are economically self-sufficient by planning communities complete with supermarkets, 21st century schools, commercial and retail corridors, recreation centers and neighborhood parks.  This is the type of community that will bring people back to Baltimore City.

My Administration will maximize our resources and capitalize on growth opportunities that are in place, including industries of innovation, technology and medicine and wellness.  We have one of the most natural Ports on the East Coast.  We can expand our import and export opportunities and create hundreds of jobs. In addition, Baltimore has 25 linear miles of fiber optic bandwidth underground in downtown Baltimore, which is a selling point to attract major IT companies from around the world who would love to take up residence on the water front and provide thousands o jobs to our local economy. We have two of the greatest medical institutions in the world here in Baltimore—Johns Hopkins Hospital and the University of Maryland Hospital that both provide thousands of jobs to our city and I will work to ensure that as major employers, livable wage jobs are standard.

My plan will bring jobs and good paying jobs.  It will provide the opportunity for all of Baltimore’s citizens to participate in the new global economy.  It will re-capture lost tax dollars and put forth incentives to re-build communities.

And just as importantly, our children are a part of my plan.  We need to look at how what we do today, will affect the inheritance of our children. Training and education are imperative so that our young people will know what opportunities will be available to them and they need to know how to prepare themselves.

Baltimore was once a “boom town” and jobs were plentiful.  Baltimore both made and shipped products that were in high demand and our steel production was key to keeping our Nation strong.  However, the post-war era changed the dynamics of the city with jobs and housing shifting to the counties, leaving urban Baltimore economically out of balance.  Baltimore was further impacted by the riots of 1968 with some of our communities never recovering.

We are in this together. Let’s look towards working together to heal our vulnerable communities and strengthen our economy with growth and innovation.

To get Baltimore working, the Carl Stokes Economic Development Plan will prepare us today for a better tomorrow.

Comprehensive Plan for Sustainable Neighborhood Redevelopment in Baltimore City

It is time to pay attention to one of Baltimore’s greatest assets, our neighborhoods, the outer harbor. The Stokes Administration will protect our stable communities, strengthen those in transition, and restructure those under stress. We will make Baltimore a place of choice to live and work, strengthening our neighborhoods as well as our tax base.

This plan is comprehensive, creative, practical, and economically sound. It is based on the concept of investing in an asset, our neighborhoods, and reaping the dividends— increasing the tax base, making our neighborhoods safe, and putting our citizens back to work.

This is a multi-faceted approach that includes the following interrelated elements—competent, cooperative city leadership; neighborhood-driven community building; housing; education; jobs; crime prevention; and transportation. And above all, it demands accountability, a trait missing in Baltimore leadership for some time.  An improved City-stat program and the use of audits, financial and performance, are two obvious ways to keep city government accountable.

The Stokes Administration will require competent, effective city leadership. We will restructure weak agencies beginning with the Department of Housing and Community Development. We will settle for nothing less than efficient responsiveness to citizens. We will demand inter-agency coordination and cooperation with department leaders working across agencies in planning and implementing services. Their consideration will be, not what is politically expedient, but what is best for Baltimore and its citizens. City employees will serve the citizens of Baltimore.

Transforming neighborhoods will require systemic change and building consensus within communities. The Stokes Administration will work with community stakeholders, providing resources, expertise, and other technical support to address the needs they have identified. Working from neighborhood strengths, we will begin with neighborhoods where there is solid infrastructure and strong community support—neighborhoods “on the cusp.” We will identify five to six such neighborhoods every 12-18 months in which we will address problems that need to be resolved—such as sanitation, education, housing, and health, while providing support to build on the community’s strengths. Then we will focus on adjacent neighborhoods, stabilizing and strengthening communities based on their needs and thus increasing the number of thriving communities.

Vacant housing throughout our city, whether scattered or in blocks, bring our neighborhoods to their knees. In order to address this, we will redevelop structurally sound buildings; tear down others for open space and new development to include affordable and market rate housing.

Partnerships among the public, private, non-profit, and faith sectors are essential to the success of the Stokes plan. Working together we can leverage resources and realize each neighborhood’s redevelopment potential. We can develop the capitalization funds that communities need to benefit from opportunities. And we will use the successful experiences of other cities as a guide, adapting their best practices to Baltimore’s unique character.

Although the issues of crime prevention, jobs and education are the focus of separate position papers, especially given the current circumstances in Baltimore, they are integral to the success of any plans for neighborhood redevelopment.  This plan cannot be complete without attention to public transportation. Today public transportation is not coherent creating a sense of being “walled in” to a neighborhood and “walled out” of employment, business, and recreational opportunities. Under the Stokes Administration, public transportation will connect people to jobs, businesses, and leisure activities.

Without accountability, the foundation of the Stokes Administration, no plan for improvement or growth in the city will be successful. We will measure outcomes in each community—outcomes that have been defined by the community and that are based on community-established goals. Such results-based evaluation will reestablish credibility lost by past failed initiatives.

The Stokes Administration will put neighborhoods first with a comprehensive, realistic, integrated plan to rebuild our neighborhoods based on the strengths of our communities—proximity to employment; affordability of homes; cultural and recreational resources; beautiful neighborhoods; and strong community leadership.

Public Safety

The greater impact to improving public safety is education and jobs.”

- Carl Stokes

Prevention, Intervention, Enforcement, and Trust will result in dramatic reductions in crime, from homicide to nuisance offenses. To sustain a safe environment in the long-term, we must look at the interrelationship between crime and education, jobs, and recreation. Looking at short-term solutions we will look to passing new gun laws, community policing, and getting repeat violent offenders and the bad cops off the streets.

For example, we cannot work together to implement effective crime prevention programs with a diminishing tax base. We cannot combat crime if taxpayers leave the city at the current rate. We must develop programs ranging from encouraging home ownership to changing the conditions of poverty and hopelessness that foster criminal activity. Unless we provide our children with adequate education that will prepare them for the future, we cannot divert them from the attractions of drugs and the resulting crime. We must recognize the interrelated nature of these issues.

Some of these ideas are not new to Baltimore, but never implemented. Community court, an idea that was funded in 1999 but discarded by then Mayor O’Malley. This concept has made a significant difference in recidivism and restitution to communities across the country.

Teen court and peer mediation are existing programs in Baltimore. How can those programs be expanded to reach more young people? The city needs to pitch in and peer mediation should be part of the school system.

Education

Transform Baltimore’s public schools into effective institutions focused on teaching and learning to produce college- and career-ready students.”
  • Ensure that each school has a highly qualified, visionary leader with adequate resources to create and maintain a world-class school
  • Implement an engaging, innovative, rigorous curriculum that incorporates real-world and 21st century skills
  • 89% fourth grade proficiency by 2020
  • Provide college- and career-readiness academic pathways for all students, beginning in middle school
  • Utilize creative strategies for teacher and administrator recruitment, offering incentives for those who live in Baltimore City
  • Offer relevant, high quality, ongoing professional growth opportunities for teachers and administrators
  • Strengthen partnerships among all stakeholders to support school success
  • Learning environment that encourages and stimulates
  • Provide wrap-around resources for students and families
  • Mandatory extended day for 4-8 grades
  • Structuring Out of School Time programming to achieve academic excellence

Economy

Bringing Forth a Baltimore Renaissance.”

In my years of experience of reviewing plans for Economic Development, I thought the responsible thing to do at this pivotal time is to re-discover the true purpose of “Economic Development” for Baltimore.  This is important because the term is often used to persuade voters to think that Economic Development is all about big, flashy businesses, and the more the better.  Economic Development for Baltimore is about all of the characteristics that make up a healthy environment where people can live, work, play and rest.

Economic Development is about creating and maintaining balanced economies so that people, all people, may thrive and live healthy balanced lives.  Economic Development is about small business as well as big business.  It is about healthy communities that include arts and entertainment.  It is about neighborhood re-development.  It is about relevant education and preparing a skilled workforce that will have access to practical jobs and compensation.  It is about implementing environmental sustainability, advocating for urban design practices that are inspiring, and budgeting resources for recreation and leisure.  It is about promoting physical health and life safety for all citizens.

Now, let’s look at Baltimore and ask these questions.

  • Does Baltimore have communities that are devastated by blight and dysfunctional infrastructure?
  • Do we have residents with a sub-standard mode of living that fails to foster economic growth and opportunity?
  • Does Baltimore have residents who cannot afford to simultaneously pay for the basics—water, electricity, food and healthcare?

Unfortunately, the answer to each question is a resounding “Yes”.  Baltimore City has communities with some of the same characteristics of an under-developed or war-torn community.  These are what I call “vulnerable” communities.

It is important to note that vulnerable communities are not only the most predisposed areas to crime, pollution, sickness, blight and despair, but are actually the most expensive areas for our City to support.

We need solutions for Baltimore’s vulnerable communities as well as our more stable areas.  My plan for Economic Development is to implement strategies that will strengthen all of Baltimore.

I believe that the solution is to get back to the true purpose of Economic Development.  We need to bring balance to vulnerable communities that have been neglected and underdeveloped.  My plan will create communities that are economically self-sufficient by planning communities complete with supermarkets, 21st century schools, commercial and retail corridors, recreation centers and neighborhood parks.  This is the type of community that will bring people back to Baltimore City.

My Administration will maximize our resources and capitalize on growth opportunities that are in place, including industries of innovation, technology and medicine and wellness.  We have one of the most natural Ports on the East Coast.  We can expand our import and export opportunities and create hundreds of jobs. In addition, Baltimore has 25 linear miles of fiber optic bandwidth underground in downtown Baltimore, which is a selling point to attract major IT companies from around the world who would love to take up residence on the water front and provide thousands o jobs to our local economy. We have two of the greatest medical institutions in the world here in Baltimore—Johns Hopkins Hospital and the University of Maryland Hospital that both provide thousands of jobs to our city and I will work to ensure that as major employers, livable wage jobs are standard.

My plan will bring jobs and good paying jobs.  It will provide the opportunity for all of Baltimore’s citizens to participate in the new global economy.  It will re-capture lost tax dollars and put forth incentives to re-build communities.

And just as importantly, our children are a part of my plan.  We need to look at how what we do today, will affect the inheritance of our children. Training and education are imperative so that our young people will know what opportunities will be available to them and they need to know how to prepare themselves.

Baltimore was once a “boom town” and jobs were plentiful.  Baltimore both made and shipped products that were in high demand and our steel production was key to keeping our Nation strong.  However, the post-war era changed the dynamics of the city with jobs and housing shifting to the counties, leaving urban Baltimore economically out of balance.  Baltimore was further impacted by the riots of 1968 with some of our communities never recovering.

We are in this together. Let’s look towards working together to heal our vulnerable communities and strengthen our economy with growth and innovation.

To get Baltimore working, the Carl Stokes Economic Development Plan will prepare us today for a better tomorrow.

Neighborhood Redevelopment

Comprehensive Plan for Sustainable Neighborhood Redevelopment in Baltimore City

It is time to pay attention to one of Baltimore’s greatest assets, our neighborhoods, the outer harbor. The Stokes Administration will protect our stable communities, strengthen those in transition, and restructure those under stress. We will make Baltimore a place of choice to live and work, strengthening our neighborhoods as well as our tax base.

This plan is comprehensive, creative, practical, and economically sound. It is based on the concept of investing in an asset, our neighborhoods, and reaping the dividends— increasing the tax base, making our neighborhoods safe, and putting our citizens back to work.

This is a multi-faceted approach that includes the following interrelated elements—competent, cooperative city leadership; neighborhood-driven community building; housing; education; jobs; crime prevention; and transportation. And above all, it demands accountability, a trait missing in Baltimore leadership for some time.  An improved City-stat program and the use of audits, financial and performance, are two obvious ways to keep city government accountable.

The Stokes Administration will require competent, effective city leadership. We will restructure weak agencies beginning with the Department of Housing and Community Development. We will settle for nothing less than efficient responsiveness to citizens. We will demand inter-agency coordination and cooperation with department leaders working across agencies in planning and implementing services. Their consideration will be, not what is politically expedient, but what is best for Baltimore and its citizens. City employees will serve the citizens of Baltimore.

Transforming neighborhoods will require systemic change and building consensus within communities. The Stokes Administration will work with community stakeholders, providing resources, expertise, and other technical support to address the needs they have identified. Working from neighborhood strengths, we will begin with neighborhoods where there is solid infrastructure and strong community support—neighborhoods “on the cusp.” We will identify five to six such neighborhoods every 12-18 months in which we will address problems that need to be resolved—such as sanitation, education, housing, and health, while providing support to build on the community’s strengths. Then we will focus on adjacent neighborhoods, stabilizing and strengthening communities based on their needs and thus increasing the number of thriving communities.

Vacant housing throughout our city, whether scattered or in blocks, bring our neighborhoods to their knees. In order to address this, we will redevelop structurally sound buildings; tear down others for open space and new development to include affordable and market rate housing.

Partnerships among the public, private, non-profit, and faith sectors are essential to the success of the Stokes plan. Working together we can leverage resources and realize each neighborhood’s redevelopment potential. We can develop the capitalization funds that communities need to benefit from opportunities. And we will use the successful experiences of other cities as a guide, adapting their best practices to Baltimore’s unique character.

Although the issues of crime prevention, jobs and education are the focus of separate position papers, especially given the current circumstances in Baltimore, they are integral to the success of any plans for neighborhood redevelopment.  This plan cannot be complete without attention to public transportation. Today public transportation is not coherent creating a sense of being “walled in” to a neighborhood and “walled out” of employment, business, and recreational opportunities. Under the Stokes Administration, public transportation will connect people to jobs, businesses, and leisure activities.

Without accountability, the foundation of the Stokes Administration, no plan for improvement or growth in the city will be successful. We will measure outcomes in each community—outcomes that have been defined by the community and that are based on community-established goals. Such results-based evaluation will reestablish credibility lost by past failed initiatives.

The Stokes Administration will put neighborhoods first with a comprehensive, realistic, integrated plan to rebuild our neighborhoods based on the strengths of our communities—proximity to employment; affordability of homes; cultural and recreational resources; beautiful neighborhoods; and strong community leadership.