Bill Henry | WYPR

Bill Henry

Patrick Semansky/AP


  The Baltimore City Council may soon have more power in the city’s budgeting process, after Mayor Jack Young signed a charter amendment to grant the legislative body the ability to move funds on Monday night.

The Democrat’s approval means the amendment will appear on Baltimore voters’ ballots in November. Voters tend to approve such referendums; in 2016, every proposed city charter amendment passed. 

COURTESY OF HENRY CAMPAIGN

Though ballots are still being counted in the Baltimore primary elections, City Councilman Bill Henry declared victory in the Democratic race for comptroller Monday night, after amassing more votes than longtime incumbent Joan Pratt can catch up to.

The upset marks the first time that someone new will serve as Baltimore’s chief fiscal watchdog since Pratt was first elected to the office in 1995.

COURTESY OF THE SCOTT AND HENRY CAMPAIGNS

City Councilman Bill Henry declared victory over longtime incumbent Joan Pratt in the race for city comptroller, while City Council President Brandon Scott’s lead over Sheila Dixon widened slightly in the Baltimore City Democratic mayoral primary Monday night.

Emily Sullivan/WYPR

  


  City Council President Brandon Scott has overtaken former mayor Sheila Dixon in the Baltimore City Democratic mayoral election by just 388 votes.

Up until a Sunday night voting count update, Dixon had maintained an edge over Scott in a crowded competition that was dramatically shaped by the coronavirus pandemic and civil unrest sweeping over Baltimore and the rest of the U.S. in the wake of the killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis police. 

Courtesy of the candidates' campaigns

A new poll from WYPR, The Baltimore Sun and the University of Baltimore shows Del. Nick Mosby, former councilman Carl Stokes and councilwoman Shannon Sneed packed tightly together in the Baltimore City council president Democratic primary race, and Comptroller Joan Pratt with a slight edge over councilman Bill Henry in an unprecedentedly heated race for comptroller.   

WYPR

As the race for Baltimore City Comptroller heats up, incumbent Joan Pratt says she knew nothing of the $20,000 federal prosecutors say former Mayor Catherine Pugh laundered through the Pigtown store the women co-owned.

“I was not the accountant. I was not the bookkeeper. I was not a check signer. I did not deposit checks,” Pratt said during an appearance Wednesday on WYPR’s Midday.

Patrick Semansky/AP

The Baltimore City Council passed a $2,500 property tax credit to make homeownership more feasible for the lowest-paid rung of city employees at its Feb. 10 meeting. Councilman Bill Henry introduced a charter amendment that would reduce the size of the City Council and add at-large members. WYPR’s city hall reporter Emily Sullivan joins Morning Edition host Nathan Sterner to explain the proposed changes and their timeline.

Emily Sullivan/WYPR


 The country’s largest healthcare worker and property service unions endorsed Brandon Scott for Baltimore City Mayor, Shannon Sneed for City Council President and Bill Henry for City Comptroller on Friday.

 

The Service Employees International Union 1199 and 32BJ cited Scott, Sneed and Henry’s support of a $15 minimum wage for all workers, efforts to expand and protect the right to unionize and their pledges to make Baltimore’s wealthy institutions contribute their “fair share” to community services. 

 

Courtesy of the office of Councilman Bill Henry

Mayor Jack Young signed a plastic bag ban into law on Monday morning, marking Baltimore’s effort to reduce pollution and single-use plastics.

The Comprehensive Bag Reduction Bill was the council’s ninth attempt to ban plastic bags since 2006. Surrounded by the ban’s supporters at National Aquarium, Young said now is the time. 

Rich Pedroncelli/AP

The Baltimore City Council passed a plastic bag ban Monday evening, meaning those plastic bags found at the grocery store or your favorite takeout place will disappear next year. 

Paul Sakuma/AP

 

Legislators in Baltimore have tried and failed to ban or highly reduce plastic bag use eight times in the last decade. A plastic bag ban bill appeared on the City Council’s docket for the ninth time this summer, and because of a progressive council it could finally pass, according to Councilman Bill Henry, the bill’s lead sponsor.

Official photograph

Those plastic bags you get at your local supermarket, or just about anywhere you shop in Baltimore City, could be a thing of the past under a measure City Councilman Bill Henry plans to introduce at Monday’s council meeting.

The bill would ban plastic bags altogether and place a surcharge of five cents on other bags — like paper or compostable bags —at the point of sale or during pick up or delivery. 

City Airbnb Hosts Caught Up in Council Bill

Dec 3, 2018
Dominique Maria Bonessi

Airbnbs and other short-term rental properties in Baltimore are liable to start costing a little more under a bill the city council is to vote Monday night. The bill would extend the city’s hotel tax to those properties and limit the number of short term rental properties an individual can operate.

Dominique Maria Bonessi

Baltimore City Council gave preliminary approval Monday night to a measure that would create a $20 million trust fund aimed at affordable housing. The vote resolved a debate that erupted last week between council members and housing advocates who feared some amendments would hurt the fund. Morning Edition Host Nathan Sterner talks about those amendments and the council meeting with WYPR's Dominique Maria Bonessi.