Baltimore Mayor Brandon M. Scott Delivers 2021 State of the City Address
Friday Mar 19th, 2021
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
BALTIMORE, MD (Thursday, March 18, 2021) — Tonight, on his 100th day in office, Baltimore Mayor Brandon M. Scott delivered the 2021 State of the City Address. The 28-minute long address highlighted the administration’s early accomplishments and the Mayor’s continued commitment to building a safer, equitable, and accountable Baltimore that prioritizes young people and neighborhoods that have been historically left behind.
“Bringing real change to Baltimore will be a difficult journey. But in these first 100 days, I am proud to say that we are moving in the right direction,” said Mayor Brandon M. Scott. “We are governing from the ground up, by ensuring that everyday basic services are being met efficiently and effectively. And we are achieving this first-rate coordination amid a global pandemic. The State of our City is strong. And I can assure you that the future of Baltimore is bright.”
In his address, the Mayor emphasized the foundational work of the past few months, including building a strong team capable of transforming Baltimore. “The team is mixed with great homegrown talent and fresh national perspectives. These individuals not only believe in my vision for a better Baltimore, they believe in you. They believe in your potential and your ambitions. And they care about solving the problems that keep Baltimore families up at night,” said the Mayor. New hires and appointments include Baltimore’s first City Administrator Christopher J. Shorter, Chief Equity Officer Dana P. Moore, and incoming Department of Public Works Director Jason Mitchell, announced earlier today.
In order to ensure public safety agencies are working in partnership to address violence, Mayor Scott included his request to Governor Hogan to restart the Criminal Justice Coordinating Council, which has been defunct.
“If combating crime was easy, everybody would do it. But it’s not,” said Mayor Scott. “Keeping neighborhoods safe is hard work, and it takes a comprehensive approach that requires all of us to play a role. And the vision I laid out for Baltimore is a major step forward.”
The Mayor also announced new initiatives his administration will focus on in the weeks and months ahead, including:
- Launching Open Checkbook to explore City expenditures
- Directing the Finance Department to ensure no one loses their home to tax sale during this pandemic
- Establishing a local language access mandate to provide access to City services in languages beyond English
- Issuing an executive order to suspend pre-employment drug screenings for public employees in non-safety sensitive positions
- Reopening recreation centers on April 5
- Opening the world-class Cahill Fitness and Wellness Center in West Baltimore
- Introducing City Council legislation to reduce the number of false alarm calls BPD responds to in order to prioritize police response to calls demanding most urgent response;
- Committing to leveraging our world-class institutions to ensure residents experiencing behavioral health or substance use crisis receive response from a clinician rather than a police officer
- Implementing a cutting-edge 911 diversion pilot program to send the most appropriate resources when residents call for assistance
- Committing to engaging hotel owners to add more permanent supportive housing to the portfolio of housing options within our community
The Mayor also stressed the significance of the $670 million in federal dollars Baltimore City is slated to receive from the American Rescue Plan. The Mayor committed to prioritizing these funds “to get Baltimoreans working again, help our businesses recover and invest in our people and places that have been left out due to the inequitable policies of the past.”
The public has been able to follow along with the Mayor’s early progress in office with the 100 Day of Action Tracker. The tracker will continue to be updated in the coming weeks.