BALTIMORE, MD – In 2009, then-Council President Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, flanked by several state lawmakers, publicly spoke out against closing fire companies.
The City would be better served, she said, to make cuts to the budget or transfer funds from other agencies to fully fund fire companies, according to a December 12, 2009 report in the Baltimore Sun.
"There's only so much you can cut from the fire budget before you start affecting the lives of residents and firefighters," she said in 2009, adding that she had expressed concerns about the closures since the plan was first unveiled.
Today, Mayor Rawlings-Blake is rejecting Council President Young’s proposal to avoid closing fire companies.
Council President Young’s People's Plan for a Better Baltimore would:
- Protect neighborhoods by maintaining the existing network of fire companies slated for closure in the mayor’s fiscal year 2013 proposed budget.
- Restore funding for the network of Community Recreation Centers, which keep youth safe and engaged in educationally and physically enriching activities.
- Demonstrate a commitment to families by expanding summer job opportunities and afterschool programs for youth.
- Ease the crippling financial burden on city workers and their families that would result from the proposed unprecedented changes to employee health care coverage.
“I find it highly insulting that the mayor chose to characterize a plan developed to support her goal of increasing Baltimore’s population as ‘unadvisable, unworkable and irresponsible,’” Council President Young said. “The mayor’s refusal to support these proposals serves as a slap in the face to every citizen of Baltimore.”
“I am calling on Mayor Rawlings-Blake to reconsider her premature rejection of the People’s Plan for a Better Baltimore. Madam Mayor, please listen to the cries of our constituents and lend your support to this thoughtful, workable plan to grow our City’s population and deliver on its promise to every man, woman and child.”