Tagged: Robert Curran

City Drops Ball, Citizens Go Public on Facebook, City Says “Don’t Do That”.

Residents in one Baltimore neighborhood have been complaining about one house for months. 311 calls, online complaints, emails to Councilman Curran’s office — and nothing was done…until the residents banded together on their neighborhood’s Facebook group, as reported by the Baltimore Brew.

For months, the residents of the home were dumping human waste into the alley, and leaving buckets of waste at the rear of the property. Neighbors filed multiple 311 complaints, called and emailed their councilman — all the things you’re supposed to do, as a good neighbor, to no avail. I happened to read about all of this on the neighborhood’s Facebook group, and sent an email to Baltimore Housing. Fern Shen of the Brew wrote about the issue, and inspectors were quickly dispatched to the property, where inspectors found more than they bargained for. As a result, the residents of the home have been moved out, and the house has been deemed uninhabitable by Baltimore Housing, and will be secured.

What irks me, however, are the statements made by Alli Smith, deputy director of the Mayor’s Office of Neighborhoods and Christine Muldowney, a staffer for Councilman Curran.

“I’m glad this issue was resolved eventually. In the future, if you need assistance with issues in the neighborhood, or need to know which agency can resolve a certain issue – the Mayor’s Office of Neighborhoods is a great resource and you can contact your neighborhood liaison directly,” said Alli Smith, deputy director of that office, writing on the Facebook thread.

“Yes, direct contact is best since there is no guarantee that a city liaison of Mayor or Council will see it,” agreed Christine Muldowney, a staffer for 3rd District Councilman Robert Curran. “I just accidentally saw post here.”

While I agree the initial complaint shouldn’t be on social media, I strongly disagree that these neighbors shouldn’t have complained publicly, using the tools available to them. Isn’t this what social media is for? And what about all of the residents’ 311 calls and emails to the councilman’s office? Why did they go ignored until the issue was made public by the Brew?

This isn’t the first time a resident living in squalor was ignored until it was made public. I’ve personally written about three, and there are many I didn’t write about — didn’t need to, since the issues were resolved through Baltimore Housing. You can read about one of the worst cases I wrote about here.

Many kudos to these residents, and to the Brew, for taking the initiative to get this issue resolved. Hopefully this story encourages more residents to band together, using all the tools available — including social media, to make their communities better.

 

Reader-Submitted Blight: 2606 Hamilton Avenue

Many thanks to Reader DTC for the photo!  Since the owner currently has six homes in receivership and one in foreclosure, we’re not holding onto much hope for this home.  There are no current permits on file for this home.

Property Address:  2606 Hamilton Avenue, Baltimore, MD 21214

Property Owner:  Class Act Realty, LLC, 5213 Reisterstown Road, Baltimore, MD 21215

Resident Agent for Class Act Realty, LLC:  Kimberly Rogers, same address

City Council District and Contact:  District 3, Robert Curran

State Senator:  Joan Carter Conway

State Delegates:  Curtis AndersonMary WashingtonMaggie McIntosh

2606 Hamilton Avenue

2606 Hamilton Avenue

Reader-Submitted Blight: 5700 Harford Road

Many thanks to Reader DC for the photo!

Property Address:  5700 Harford Road, Baltimore, MD 21214

Property Owner:  Barry E. Depetris, 3103 Rosalie Avenue, Baltimore, MD 21234 (Property is going through the receivership process in court).

City Council District and Contact:  District 3, Robert Curran

State Senator:  Joan Carter Conway

State Delegates:  Curtis AndersonMary WashingtonMaggie McIntosh

5700 Harford Road

5700 Harford Road

 

Reader-Submitted Blight: 5503 Richard Avenue

Many thanks to Reader DTC for this submission!

Property Address:  5503 Richard Avenue, Baltimore, MD 21214

Property Owner:  VB&C, LLC, 5309 St. Georges Avenue, Baltimore, MD 21212 (Company is not in good standing.)

Resident Agent for VB&C, LLC:  Linda Ann Brown, same address.

City Council District and Contact:  District 3, Robert Curran

State Senator: Nathaniel McFadden

State Delegates: Talmadge Branch, Cheryl Glenn

5503 Richard Avenue

5503 Richard Avenue

5503 Richard Avenue, opposite side

5503 Richard Avenue, opposite side

3706 Southern Avenue

Many thanks (again) to Reader RJW for his photo and narrative:  “Boarded up, overgrown lawn, trash cans uncovered and overflowing.”

Property Address:  3607 Southern Avenue, Baltimore, MD 21206

Property Owner:  Paul W. Johnson, same address

City Council District and Contact:  District 3, Robert Curran

3706 Southern Avenue

3502 Echodale Avenue

Property Address:  3502 Echodale Avenue, Baltimore, MD 21214

Property Owner:  Christine Tsiotsias, same address.

City Council District and Contact:  District 3, Robert Curran

While the owner’s name and address have not been changed in the Maryland tax database, according to the notice on the front door, the property is now under the management of Bank of America.  It’s apparent they’re not maintaining the property, as it’s boarded up and overgrown — what a shame.

3502 Echodale Avenue

Vacant dwelling notice on 3502 Echodale Avenue, instructing people to report issues with the home to Bank of America.

3502 Echodale Avenue, side view

Again, many thanks to “Reader RJW” for the info and photos!