Mayor Catherine Pugh | WYPR

Mayor Catherine Pugh

Patrick Semansky/AP

Weeks after she was accused of self-dealing, a month after she took a paid leave of absence for her health and just days after FBI and IRS raids, Catherine Pugh has resigned as mayor of Baltimore.

Speaking at a press conference in his downtown Baltimore office, her lawyer Steven Silverman read statement from Pugh. The 96-second long resignation letter read in part:

“I'm sorry for the harm that I have caused to the image of the city of Baltimore and the credibility of the office of the mayor. Baltimore deserves a mayor who can move our great city forward."

Emily Sullivan/WYPR

 

Last night, the city council introduced a package of charter amendments that would bolster its power throughout the city -- and over the mayor. WYPR’s Emily Sullivan joins Nathan Sterner to explain the proposed changes and their timeline.

 

Rachel Baye

University of Maryland Medical System leaders met Wednesday afternoon with Gov. Larry Hogan and state Senate President Mike Miller to discuss hundreds of thousands of dollars in business deals between the hospital and its board members.

Board Chairman Stephen Burch said a board meeting Thursday will determine next steps and ways to ensure this doesn’t happen again.

Rachel Baye

Audio coming soon.   

The leaders of five Baltimore-area jurisdictions said Wednesday that the ongoing federal government shutdown is straining local resources, including food assistance programs. At a press conference in Annapolis, they urged Congress and President Donald Trump to end the shutdown immediately.

Fitzgerald Withdraws

Jan 8, 2019

  

Joel Fitzgerald, Mayor Catherine Pugh’s choice to be Baltimore’s next police commissioner, has withdrawn his name from consideration. 

The Fort Worth, Texas, police department, the force Fitzgerald leads now, made the announcement in a terse tweet early Monday morning, but provided no details.

Fitzgerald Makes First Public Appearance at City Hall

Nov 27, 2018
Dominique Maria Bonessi

Baltimore Police Commissioner-designate Joel Fitzgerald made his first public appearance Monday at city hall. Fitzgerald stood alongside Mayor Catherine Pugh answered questions from the media, and WYPR’s Dominique Maria Bonessi spoke to Morning Edition Host Nathan Sterner.

Who is Doctor Ross McNutt?

Nov 19, 2018
https://www.pss-1.com/

Well, for starters, he’s the president of Persistent Surveillance System, a Dayton, Ohio, firm that operates aerial surveillance systems.

Shortly after the Freddie Gray riots in 2015, the city police department used private funds to have Ross McNutt set up an aerial surveillance system. The department didn’t tell the city’s elected leaders. The police squashed the program after a Bloomberg Businessweek article that created a public outcry. Now, Ross McNutt is back, trying to get approval for his plans for a camera-equipped drone and he’s no stranger to trial and error.

Pugh Names New Police Commissioner

Nov 16, 2018
Fort Worth Police, Fort Worth, Texas

Mayor Catherine Pugh announced the appointment of Fort Worth Police Chief Joel Fitzgerald as Baltimore’s new top cop Friday after a lengthy, secretive search. Fitzgerald arrives with some baggage from his last job.

Word of Fitzgerald’s appointment began leaking Friday afternoon after Pugh penned an op-ed piece to appear in Saturday’s print editions of The Sun. In it, she wrote that Fitzgerald “is best suited to lead the way forward.”

City Audit Report Finds a Mess at DOT

Oct 31, 2018
Dominique Maria Bonessi

Baltimore City’s Department of Transportation is in shambles, according to an audit released today.

An audit from the 2016—2017 fiscal year found that the department couldn’t document its claims about the safety of the city’s bridges, nor could it document docking fees at city marinas or keep track of the ridership on the city’s circulator buses.

Council Members Ask for Swift Action on BPD Audit Recommendations

Oct 25, 2018
Dominique Maria Bonessi

Baltimore City Council committee got a look Thursday at the audit that found the police department has little, if any, way to track or control overtime costs. The council members want Mayor Catherine Pugh and the department to move quickly to implement the recommendations in the report.

As Finance Director Henry Raymond briefed the council’s budget committee on the recommendations, Council President Jack Young got caught up in the wording of the first one:

BPD Audit Reveals No Control of Officer Overtime

Oct 24, 2018
Patrick Semansky / AP

This post has been updated.

Baltimore’s Police Department has little, if any way to track and control the amount of overtime its officers work. That’s according to the first phase of a long-delayed audit of police overtime practices.

Mayor Catherine Pugh called for the audit in her state of the city speech in March after federal court revelations of rampant overtime abuse by members of the now disbanded Gun Trace Task Force.

Closing Time: Baltimore's Battle with Liquor Licenses

Sep 13, 2018
Dominique Maria Bonessi

Second of two parts

Shekhar Karki has owned Waverly Tavern, a bar and liquor store in north Baltimore, for four years.

“It’s a good business,” he says. “That is what I thought before starting.”

City Needs More Health Department Inspectors

Aug 22, 2018
Dominique Maria Bonessi

Most of the restaurants in Baltimore City are operating without annual health department inspections; there just aren’t enough inspectors to go around. That’ s according to an audit released Wednesday morning at the Board of Estimates meeting.

Pugh Rejects Request for Fewer Officers Around Johns Hopkins

Aug 15, 2018
Baltimore City Office of the Mayor

Some Baltimore City Council members want fewer police patrolling around Johns Hopkins University and Hospital. But Mayor Catherine Pugh rejected the idea at her Wednesday news conference.

“First of all Hopkins does not exist on an island," she said. "It’s not 20 miles outside of Baltimore.”

YouthWorks at Risk of Losing State Funding

Jul 11, 2018

Baltimore’s summer youth jobs program is riddled with problems. That’s according to an audit presented to the Board of Estimates this morning. Acting City Auditor Audrey Askew says it puts the program at risk of losing state funding.

City Council Resolutions on Family Reunification and Police

Jul 10, 2018
Dominique Maria Bonessi

 

Baltimore City Council passed three resolutions last night calling for the immediate reunification of families on the US-Mexico border, monthly meetings for oversight of the police department’s budget, and violence reduction strategy. WYPR’s Dominique Maria Bonessi spoke with Morning Edition Host Andy Bienstock.

Funny thing about making a podcast:  You never know who’s listening.  Turns out, Baltimore’s mayor, Catherine Pugh, is a fan of Out of the Blocks, and she invited producer Aaron Henkin to join her in front of a live audience for a conversation about the show.  (Aaron got to ask her some questions, too.)  This episode is a recording of the event, which happened Monday evening, June 25th, at the Chesapeake Shakespeare Company’s theater in downtown Baltimore.  

DOT's Blocking the Box Campaign on Hold

Jun 4, 2018
Dominique Maria Bonessi

  

Two months ago Mayor Catherine Pugh said Baltimore’s Department of Transportation would begin in June to crack down on drivers who let themselves get caught in the middle of an intersection when the light changes—known as “blocking the box.”

Well, that hasn’t happened, yet. And it may not for a while.

City Students Who Died From Violence Remembered at Vigil

May 30, 2018
Dominique Maria Bonessi

In this school year, nine Baltimore City students died as a result of violence. CEO of Schools Sonja Santelises and Mayor Catherine Pugh held a memorial vigil Wednesday for  them and all city school students.

Baltimore Police Department

Mayor Catherine Pugh has suspended police Commissioner Darryl DeSousa after he was charged with federal tax violations.

She announced the suspension with pay, effective immediately, at a Friday afternoon news conference, the day after federal authorities charged DeSousa with failing to file state and federal tax returns in 2013, 2014 and 2015.

Dorsey Calls for Independent Office of the Inspector General

May 3, 2018
Dominique Maria Bonessi

District Three City Councilman Ryan Dorsey and the Maryland Consumer Rights Coalition unveiled a charter amendment that calls for an independent inspector general Thursday. The group needs 15,000 signatures on a petition and approval from city council and the mayor’s office to get the amendment on the November ballot.

Pugh Tours the Penn/North Violence Reduction Zone

Apr 24, 2018
Dominique Maria Bonessi

As part of her violence reduction initiative, Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh has been meeting daily with the heads of every city agency. On Tuesday morning, she took another step, a walking tour of one of the toughest neighborhoods in the city.

Bills Introduced to Address City Agencies' Inequity

Apr 16, 2018
Dominique Maria Bonessi

City Councilman Brandon Scott is to introduce legislation at tonight’s city council meeting requiring each city agency to study whether their policies are discriminatory. This would also require a fund to made.

Scott, a candidate for Lieutenant Governor, is proposing two bills to deal with inequity in city agencies. One of which, would create a charter amendment to assure funding.

City Council Attempts to Gain Control of BPD Again

Feb 6, 2018

At last night's meeting of the Baltimore City Council, Brandon Scott, chair of the public safety committee, put forth a resolution for the state to create a board of police commissioners and transfer over full control of the city’s police department to the city.

WYPR’s Dominique Maria Bonessi reports that this is the not the first time Scott has pushed for this legislation.


Mary Rose Madden

Mayor Catherine Pugh has fired Baltimore Police Commissioner Kevin Davis and hired Deputy Commissioner Daryll DeSousa as his replacement.

Pugh announced the change Friday morning.

She said Davis worked hard , but that she'd grown "impatient" waiting for crime numbers in Baltimore to drop and wanted to see "new, creative, innovative ways to change what we're seeing here every day". 

Hogan and Pugh meet for opening of General Assembly

Jan 11, 2018
Dominique Maria Bonessi

Two days after Governor Larry Hogan promised $2.5 million for repairs to Baltimore City schools’ troubled heating systems, he met with Mayor Catherine Pugh to talk about the schools and other issues.

Hogan allocates $2.5M in emergency funds to BCPS

Jan 8, 2018
Baltimore City Public Schools

Governor Larry Hogan promised an emergency $2.5 million for repairs to Baltimore City Schools' troubled heating systems today. And he blamed the problems on mismanagement. Meanwhile, at least eight Baltimore City schools were closed today because of continuing problems with the heating systems and a water main break.

Upton opens new wrestling program

Jan 2, 2018
Dominique Maria Bonessi

In December, Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh launched her multi-agency initiative to reduce violence in the city. The city’s Department of Recreation and Parks responded by extending their hours and expanding their programs to keep kids off the streets.

WYPR went to Upton Boxing to check out the new programs for another installment in our series “As They Grow: Tracking changes for the next generation.”

Mayor Pugh holds candlelight vigil for victims of violence

Dec 29, 2017
Dominique Maria Bonessi

As Baltimore’s homicide rate reached record proportions—343 murders this year—Mayor Catherine Pugh held a candle light vigil for the victims last night at the War Memorial.

FBI rejects takeover of Suiter investigation

Dec 27, 2017
Dominique Maria Bonessi

The Federal Bureau of Investigation rejected the Baltimore Police Department’s request to take over the investigation of the shooting death of Homicide Detective Sean Suiter. Police Commissioner Kevin Davis says the department will go back to square one of the investigation.

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