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You Tell Us: How Would You Rate Baltimore City's Openness?

Patch wants to know what our readers think about various issues impacting their lives.

A recent blog on this site brought to light a study that gave Maryland government for its openness.

But seeing as this website is primarily focused on Baltimore City, Patch wanted to find out how our readers view the city government when it comes to openness.

The city certainly receives a lot of complaints, especially when it comes to issues such as , the and

Baltimore has also undertaken such projects as OpenBaltimore to make city data on issues such as real property taxes, parking citations and vacant buildings readily available to the public.

How would you rate Baltimore City's openness? Tell us in comments.

Mike T March 21, 2012 at 12:59 PM
depends on what you are interested in. with matters related to direct interactions between the city and residents the level of openness is not bad in my experience. matters of the city government's self administration are a totally different story.
Dennis The Cynic March 21, 2012 at 01:45 PM
Very little streaming media available. Outdated recordings for Board of Estimates. The data that is given out is questionable at best. With some exceptions, very limited engagement with citizens from our elected officials. They have made strides over the past four years, but overall... D+ at best. The worst part is the technological/civic community would certainly be glad to help if city hall reached out more often.
AnnKangarouse March 21, 2012 at 04:24 PM
As if you have to ask.......... HORRIBLE. IMMORAL. And I WISH...ILLEGAL to hold SO MUCH information behind closed doors. Think about it folks.... why would our city 'leaders' an dsuch have to HIDE so much if everythings on the up and up. Citizen taxpayers have NO CLUE what takes place in the BOE meetings. There's a reason why the public has very little notice, a reason why much of the BOE information is coded and a reason why some citizens are kept OUT of the building during these meetings. Horrific and deplorable behavior and there's not a damn thing we can do about it. Even a notoriously corrupt organizations such as the BDC is/was required to abide by the sunshine law, they refused. And got away with it and STILL get away with it. The ONLY solution to this is for the FEDS to do a full investigation. WHERE is all the money going???????? WHY when the federal and state dollars come in, do they rarely, if at ALL end up at the intended destinations? Why is this money being used to purchase thousands and thousands and thousands of dollars on gift cards?? Then the gift cards are distrubuted amongst city leaders and developers??? Ya sorta can't blame the powers that be to REALLY open the books though right??? They certainly don't want to end up in federal prison for their crimes....
Laura P March 21, 2012 at 08:14 PM
Any city where three or four individuals holding a grudge can undermine a private citizen and conspire to take his property for over a decade, resulting in disaster for one of the nation's most famous theaters - a theater that was consistently rated one of the best in the country under the stewardship of said private citizen, then take that property and hand it over to someone far less qualified to run it, when any other major city in the country would have been giving the former owner all the support they could - that city gets a grade of E- in my book. Shame on you, Baltimore! This has got to be one of the worst cities in the country.
AnnKangarouse March 22, 2012 at 12:44 AM
I give them a combined grade of BOE and BDC!
Sean Tully March 22, 2012 at 03:32 AM
I can't grade how "open" the city government is but I can say that they are very reluctant to change policies when their shenanigans are revealed, witness the erroneous water bill problems.
Tharris March 22, 2012 at 10:41 AM
Well, how would you rate a process where the BDC withholds expert input from a RFP evaluation team? How about meeting at City Hall with the mayor (and her development staff) who, sitting three feet from you, looks you in the eye and agrees to take advantage of a gratis, expert, independent consultation prior to awarding said RFP. Then you find after the award that the free initial expert consultation was never used. Does this sound like a process in which you would place your trust that: A) options were thoroughly explored? B) expert guidance was actively engaged and/or taken into account? C) taxpayer funding is being wisely spent?
AnnKangarouse March 22, 2012 at 01:04 PM
More of the city's shenanigans (unethical crimes) need to be revealed by more than those who have suffered the consequences. Local 'investigative" media needs to catch up to speed here on these issues. A have a few other grades to toss into the mix here. An F and a U......
AnnKangarouse March 22, 2012 at 01:11 PM
http://northbaltimore.patch.com/blog_posts/the-other-side-of-the-integrity-report
AnnKangarouse March 22, 2012 at 03:53 PM
http://www.msba.org/sec_comm/sections/realprop/groundrules/winter07/thesunshine.asp

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