November 2020: Maryland Legislature and Housing Segregation
Thanks for tuning in for the PPNA Community Meeting on November 9, 2020. We had a great conversation with Delegate Brooke Lierman. We heard about what’s new with the PPNA Transportation Committee and Sustainability Committee. We talked as a group about the history of redlining and housing segregation in Baltimore, and what this means for our neighborhood. Complete recording is available below. Read on for more info, and tune in next month! Next Community Meeting is December 14 at 7:00pm.
Mindfulness Nature Walk with Phillip McKnight: Coming up on Tuesday, November 17 at 4:00pm. Join Phillip McKnight for a Mindfulness Nature Walk through Patterson Park. We will begin at the Pagoda and make our way through the park, focusing on nature sights and sounds with mindfulness techniques. Families and participants of all ages welcome! Click here to register.
Baltimore City Liquor Board: Matt Achhammer is the Community Liaison for the Liquor Board. Contact Matt at email@example.com or 410-241-6525 with questions or concerns regarding liquor licensing. Click here to view the October Community Connection Newsletter. Please continue to submit Liquor Board complaints through 311 (online and using the app are recommended). Licensed establishments looking to continue and enhance their outdoor seating, can get info on the Mayor’s Heating Solutions Program by clicking here.
The next meeting of the PPNA Sustainability Committee will be Wednesday, November 18 at 7:00p on Zoom. Click here to join!
Delegate Brooke Lierman, Maryland General Assembly
Delegate Brooke Lierman is a neighbor in District 1. Brooke was elected in 2014; she is passionate about public safety. Her stance is very pro-transit and pro-pedestrian. Brooke shared information about some ongoing efforts within the Maryland General Assembly.
The Home Act was passed during the last session. The Home Act was introduced for 23 previous sessions, and finally passed in 2020. The Home Act is a fair housing law that prohibits against income-discrimination.
The Transit Safety and Investment Act is currently in progress. This bill was based on the Capital Needs Assessment from MTA in 2019. Over the next ten years, there is a $2 billion dollar gap between what they need to maintain a state of good repair and what they have coming in. Note: this was the financial state pre-pandemic. This will be a pre-filed bill to advocate that we allocate more money towards MTA.
The Plastic Bag Ban is currently in progress at the state-level. This bill was passed by the House but not the Senate, so it is going to be reintroduced in the next session. There is a plastic bag ban in place in the City, but not yet in place widely around other jurisdictions in Maryland. Brooke led the Workgroup on Waste Reduction and Recycling, and the Plastic Bag Ban is just one component of how we move towards reducing waste in Maryland.
There is also an effort to create a state-wide office on digital connection. The focus here is to make sure that folks around the state have affordable access to the internet, and that they know how to connect/how to use the internet. There are different challenges in every area of the state. In rural areas, there is no way to get broadband. In other areas, there is the option to have internet, but it is not affordable. Furthermore, many people who do have internet access do not know how to use it or why they would use the internet. Maryland will be ahead of the curve if the Biden-Harris administration passes an infrastructure bill for supporting the digital divide.
Regarding the COVID-19 pandemic: World Central Kitchen adopted 11 schools in Baltimore City, including Highlandtown 237, and provided meals to thousands of school families for three months during the pandemic.
Regarding voter turnout in Baltimore City: --87.2% of Baltimore City voters voted for Biden-Harris. Of those: 4,900+ people did early voting 22,000+ people voted on election day 118,000+ people voted by mail --10% of Baltimore City voters voted for Trump-Pence. Of those: 8,400+ people did early voting 5,400+ people voted on election day 9,700+ people voted by mail --This is evidence that there was an overwhelming positive demand for mail-in voting, and it was a huge success for Baltimore City voters.
Regarding session for the Maryland General Assembly: We will be back in session starting on January 12, 2021. It will be mostly in-person with a simulcast option to reach the Senate and the House. All of our Committees-based work will stay virtual. Briefings and workshops are available on YouTube, @MGA Legislature. In-person appointments, open to the public, will be by appointment only.
Contact Brooke: firstname.lastname@example.org or 410-841-3319
Collin Hayward, PPNA Transportation Committee
PPNA submitted a grant application along with Southeast CDC, applying for funding for Right of Way (ROW) art. When we receive news of the grant award, we’ll be seeking feedback from neighbors about the theme of the art, collaborate with the artist, and volunteer to support the art installation. The proposal includes the intersections of: E Baltimore x Linwood, E Baltimore x Lakewood, Fayette x Luzerne.
Slow Streets: The Slow Streets program is still active in our neighborhood, and throughout Baltimore City. The Slow Streets program is intended to support safe, essential physical activity by creating more space for social distancing in response to the pandemic.
New Business: We would love to know from you about the areas of infrastructure, future projects, and potential directions for the Transportation Committee. What’s important to you? Let us know.
Contact Collin: email@example.com or on Facebook @PPNATransportation.
Allison Blood, PPNA Sustainability Committee
PPNA and We Can B*More will continue to provide a Neighborhood Recycling Dumpster every weekend, located at Fairmount x Potomac.
The Recycling Dumpsters are NOT connected with DPW. Please be prepared to sort through your recycling to make sure there are no unaccepted items in your recycling.
If containers look like they held food, they will not be recycled. Examples of items that will not be recycled are: pizza boxes, take-out containers, and clear plastic containers from berries/salad greens/etc.
Check out these announcements from the PPNA Sustainability Committee for more information. The next meeting of the PPNA Sustainability Committee will be Wednesday, November 18 at 7:00p on Zoom (link forthcoming). All are welcome!
Contact Allison: firstname.lastname@example.org
Housing Segregation and Redlining in America: A Short History
Together, we watched a brief YouTube video produced at Code Switch by NPR: Housing Segregation and Redlining in America: A Short History (2018). Then, we had a discussion about our reactions to the video, and what this means for our neighborhood.
Additional Resources: --“Two Baltimores: The White L vs. the Black Butterfly” by Lawrence Brown in the Baltimore Sun. June 28, 2016. Source: https://www.baltimoresun.com/citypaper/bcpnews-two-baltimores-the-white-l-vs-the-black-butterfly-20160628-htmlstory.html --“2 similar Baltimore-area communities now exemplify widening racial wealth gap” by WBALTV11. February 20, 2020. Source: https://www.wbaltv.com/article/widening-racial-wealth-gap-baltimore-edmondson-village-rodgers-forge/31020226# --"The Racial Dot Map: One Dot Per Person for the Entire U.S.” by University of Virginia. Published in July 2013, based on data from the 2010 Census. Source: https://demographics.coopercenter.org/racial-dot-map/ --Baltimore Neighborhood Indicators Alliance from The Jacob France Institute at the University of Baltimore. Source: http://www.jacob-france-institute.org/programs/bnia/ --“Baltimore’s So Segregated, Even Strava Shows It. These Runners Want to Change That.” by Runner’s World. February 19, 2019. Source: https://www.runnersworld.com/runners-stories/a26131774/baltimore-segregated-strava-heatmap/
In the PPNA Anti-Racism Statement, we committed to prioritizing work on anti-racism, police reform, justice reform, and all issues relevant to our diverse community in our monthly meetings. We would love neighborhood input on this. What resources have been helpful to you? How have you challenged your own bias? What gaps are there in our neighborhood, in PPNA leadership, and in ourselves? Contact us to share your suggestions: email@example.com.