A Sprawling Mess

Baltimore residents want to dump the Environmental Control Board

Many people seem to be livid at the Environmental Control Board lately. At least three lawsuits involving the board are currently pending in Circuit Court, and Baltimore Inspector General David McClintock says complaints have reached his office. Full Story »

Posted by Mary Hartney - via Baltimore City Paper (News + Features)

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Review

RaShawna Sydnor
4.2
by RaShawna Sydnor - Mar. 25, 2011

I enjoyed the the fact that various players that were interviewed, the varying angles and the the content of the story. It didn't read one sided and allowed the voice of citizens, members of the board and local officials.

If I had no experience with process, I may have had a different view but my grandmother has been recipient of these violations. My grandmother who responsibly disposes of her trash in her can (with chili pepper for the rats) has received citations because others dispose of trash in her cans which may cause them to overflow or go without the top being sealed. Now as a senior, she does not have 50.00 to throw around nor does she have the financial ability or transportation to appeal herself to death so that she doesn't have to pay the fine! These are the instances that should be considered while looking at the bigger picture. If we are going to make a difference in attitudes, the process has to be fair and forthright with all i's dotted and t's crossed. The fact that the board doesn't have to follow the formal "rules of evidence" is both unfair and unscrupulous. Based on this rule, from the moment the citation is issued you are considered guilty and given the right to appeal seems to stand as another way for the city to collect more money. How on earth does someone get fined 700.00 for an unregistered cat (what is that by the way), for all I know I could have an unregistered dog, I never filed a notice with the city! It just seems to me that in an attempt to protect the city from those that abuse the system - as with absentee landlords, slum-lords and other of the like - the average citizen is paying the price. Yes, we want our city's trash problem under control and yes, I think most realize the importance of the citations on a larger scale but, who fines the city when abandoned building collapse on people, when the cops block traffic unnecessarily or when the potholes in the street tear your car a new muffler!!! Let's be fair here, fine those that you can prove; for those that are unfairly fined, give them their proper due process and think beyond the money. The real question is whether or not the issues we have with garbage have decreased with the increase in fines and it sounds like they haven’t so who is really winning here?

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RaShawna's Rating

Overall
4.2

Good
from 12 answers
Quality
4.1
Facts
4.0
Fairness
4.0
Sourcing
4.0
Style
4.0
Context
4.0
Depth
4.0
Enterprise
4.0
Relevance
5.0
Popularity
4.5
Recommendation
5.0
Credibility
4.0
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