Zeke Cohen | WYPR

Zeke Cohen

CREDIT DREW MORRIS/FLICKR


  Baltimore City students joined peers in Philadelphia, Detroit and Baton Rouge to call on Comcast to close the digital divide by providing free internet access for all students. The company’s Internet Essentials program isn’t fast or cheap enough to allow all students to learn remotely online, they said at a Wednesday news conference.  

Kimberly Vasquez, a senior at Baltimore City College High School, said her school year hasn’t been marked with the usual milestones but by internet connections that lag and drop, especially when multiple people in the same household are online.

Drew Morris/Flickr


Baltimore City Public School leaders said Monday that they will delay the return to in-person classes until later this fall, saying the system must balance pandemic health measures with the need to get students back into classrooms.

 

“We were determined that our plan be data-based, both in terms of COVID-19 and the disproportionate impact of distance learning on our most vulnerable students — while avoiding any influence from attempts to politicize this situation,” Sonja Santelises, CEO of the school system, said in a statement.

Jamyla Krempel

Trans activists and allies took over several blocks of N. Charles Street Friday to paint a new street mural reading “BLACK TRANS LIVES MATTER,” as reckonings over race and health continue to play out across the country. 

The mural, stretching from 21st to 23rd St., is on the same set of streets that many Black trans women perform survival sex work -- that is, the practice of trading sex for basic needs. Some of them have been killed or died from overdoses.

 

Credit AP/PATRICK SEMANSKY


The Baltimore City Council adopted a budget for the next fiscal year that cuts $22.4 million from the police department’s $550 million budget, including nearly $7 million from overtime spending.

 

The cuts come days after protestors gathered outside City Hall demanding that the Baltimore Police Department be defunded altogether. The cuts are less than 5% of the total police department’s 2021 budget, which is 1.2% lower than the department’s budget from the previous year. 

Emily Sullivan/WYPR

City elections workers spent Thursday carefully separating City Council District 1 mail-in ballots from a mass of ballots from residents across the city at a hot warehouse in West Baltimore. The process delayed the counting of citywide mail-in ballots, which kicked off Friday morning.

A proofing error in the District 1 ballots rendered the initial results of the area’s Democratic council race between incumbent Zeke Cohen and challenger Paris Bienert and judge of the circuit court race unreliable. To attain accurate results, Baltimore City Board of Elections workers, working in teams of two, copied information from the original District 1 ballots by hand onto new ballots that can be accurately read by scanners. 

SCREENSHOT VIA EMILY SULLIVAN, CHARMTV

The Baltimore City Council held its third virtual meeting last night as coronavirus containment methods keep legislators at home. WYPR’s Emily Sullivan and Nathan Sterer discuss a bill that aims to establish a permanent home for the city's Children and Youth Fund and divert up to $13 million from that fund to fund internet access and technology for children as well as boxed meals.

 

screenshot via Emily Sullivan/WYPR


    The Baltimore City Council heard a series of coronavirus measures during its second-ever virtual meeting Monday night. 

City Council President Brandon Scott introduced an ordinance that would make the acts of impersonating an official and issuing “false statements” during a declared state of emergency a misdemeanor. 

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. 

 

Emily Sullivan/WYPR

  

After former Mayor Catherine Pugh's self-dealing, City Council President Brandon Scott introduced a city charter amendment to adjust the makeup of the Board of Estimates at Monday's council meeting. The council also passed the Trauma Responsive Care Act and saw the introduction of Scott and Councilwoman Shannon Sneed's labor agreement bill. WYPR’s city hall reporter Emily Sullivan joins Nathan Sterner to explain what those bills are, and how they came about.

AP/Patrick Semansky

 

After a tumultous year of multiple elected officials stepping down amid corruption charges, Councilman Ryan Dorsey introduced a new bill that would prohibit those in office from accepting or soliciting gifts at a City Council meeting Monday night. City Council President Brandon Scott introduced resolutions to examine possible solutions to the opioid crisis in Baltimore. The Council also pushed Councilman Zeke Cohen's Trauma Responsive Care Act further along in the legislative process. WYPR’s city hall reporter Emily Sullivan joins Nathan Sterner to explain what these bills are and how they came about. 

Getting Latinos to the Polls

Nov 2, 2018
AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana

This post has been updated.

It’s a windy autumn Saturday at the Bladensburg Festival del Rio, an annual event for environmental groups to entertain and educate Latinos about environmental issues.

There are tents set up with different activities for kids, a live band, and kayaking rides on the Anacostia. I’m here to ask Latinos voters how interested they are in the upcoming midterm election. Bayardo Lune, sits in the shade about to enjoy his lunch. He came to the US 20 years ago from Mexico and says he’s not sure if he’s going to vote on Tuesday.

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.