Mayor to Convene First Meeting of the Local Control Advisory Board, With Aim of Restoring Local Control of BPD
Friday Oct 8th, 2021
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
BALTIMORE, MD (Friday, October 8, 2021) - After swearing in community appointees to the Local Control Advisory Board in late August, Mayor Brandon M. Scott is announcing the details of the Board’s first meeting. The Local Control Advisory Board is a community-driven advisory board tasked with advising on the transition from state to local control. The Mayor has been among the advocates and community leaders who have lobbied for this change for nearly a decade in Annapolis.
The Local Control Advisory Board will meet for the first time on Wednesday, October 27, 2021 from 5:30-7:30 p.m. Residents can tune into the meeting virtually via WebEx. Meeting details are available on the Mayor’s website.
“After a decade of advocacy in Annapolis, Baltimore City is one step closer to having local control of its police department for the very first time. I look forward to working closely with the members of the Local Control Advisory Board to prioritize implementing local control in an effective and transparent manner, as soon as humanly possible,” said Mayor Brandon M. Scott. “The ability to set policies and provide oversight locally will enable us to transform the Baltimore Police Department, while also fulfilling our consent decree requirements with integrity.”
During the 2021 legislative session, Maryland lawmakers passed legislation that would restore local control of the Baltimore Police Department, currently a state agency. SB0786/HB1027, sponsored by Senator Cory McCray (D45-Baltimore City) and Delegate Melissa Wells (D40-Baltimore City) at the request of the Mayor, establishes BPD as an agency and instrumentality of the City of Baltimore, instead of the State.
Additionally, the legislation established the Local Control Advisory Board, which will guide the transition from state to local control. The legislation also gives final approval to the voters, with a process to put local control on the ballot as a Charter Amendment.
On August 28, Mayor Scott swore in the following members of the Local Control Advisory Board: Ray Kelly of the Citizens Policing Project, Tré Murphy of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Ashiah Parker of the No Boundaries Coalition, Lydia Walther-Rodriguez of CASA, Mark Washington of Coldstream Homestead Montebello Community Corporation, and Caylin Young of the ACLU of Maryland.
These community-appointed members will join Mayor Scott, City Council President Nick Mosby, Senator Cory McCray, Delegate Stephanie Smith, Police Commissioner Michael Harrison, Shantay Jackson of the Mayor’s Office of Neighborhood Safety and Engagement, Baltimore City Chief Equity Officer Dana Moore, City Solicitor Jim Shea, Tyler Salley of the Civilian Review Board, a representative from the Vanguard Justice Society, and Bob Cherry, Fraternal Order of Police appointee.
Tyler Adamson of the Citizens Advisory Commission for Public Safety has been named as an ex officio Board member.
The Board must submit an interim report to the City Council, General Assembly, and Governor by December 1, 2021 and a final report by December 1, 2022. The Mayor has set a goal of getting local control on the ballot by 2022.
Currently, Baltimore City is the only jurisdiction in Maryland that does not directly oversee its police department. State control dates back over one hundred years, when the Maryland State Legislature declared the Baltimore Police Department a state agency. Restoring local control of BPD to Baltimore City would enable City residents and local elected officials to directly set policies and provide oversight.