Interview with Mayoral Candidate Nick Mosby

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HOW CAN BALTIMORE, WITH YOUR LEADERSHIP, RECOVER AND GROW FROM THE TRAGIC DEATH OF FREDDIE GRAY?

The unrest highlighted challenges that have plagued our city for years.  Decades of systemic failures and bad policies have dashed hopes for the thousands of young people who call this city home. Social and economic justice is the cornerstone of any healthy society. This is the time to harness our collective frustration, angst, and anger and channel it into change for our home as we consensus build to create a better Baltimore.  We shouldn’t waste this crisis.

Baltimore is uniquely positioned to be a thriving 21st century city and I am uniquely positioned to lead with New Leadership that will deliver Lasting Results to the people of Baltimore City by using a comprehensive model that connects our most challenging issues together, rather than pretending one can be truly improved while the others continue to suffer. It is not enough to fix the schools if there are no jobs after graduation. It is not enough to create jobs if there is no transportation to get people to jobs. It is not enough to crack down on crime without tackling the root causes of crime. That’s why I presented a comprehensive policy platform that has a multi-layered approach to addressing our challenges.



HOW CAN YOU BALANCE THE NEED TO REFORM THE BALTIMORE POLICE SYSTEM

WITH WORKING WITH THE BALTIMORE POLICE DEPARTMENT? IS THIS COMPLICATED BY YOUR WIFE BEING THE STATE’S ATTORNEY FOR BALTIMORE?

Not complicated at all.

We will improve police transparency, require true community policing, combat addiction, and get body-worn cameras on officers within 100 days of taking office. This means:

·         Ensuring that the Police Department equips officers and patrol cars with body and dashboard cameras to ensure the safety of police and the residents they serve.

·         Directing the Police Department to implement a comprehensive community policing strategy that demonstrate resident interaction, walking the beat, and taking every reported crime seriously.

·         Creating a program that helps officers on the beat connect residents with City agencies to address quality of life complaints.

·         Ending mandatory non-disparagement agreements for police misconduct cases to improve transparency and rebuild public trust.

·         Strengthening the civilian review board by filling its vacant seats, adding elected members, and having trained civilian investigators conduct misconduct complaints.

·         Investing in stabilization centers to assist residents arrested for intoxication and overdose by connecting them with the care and services they need to break the pattern of addiction.

·         Creating a Morbidity and Mortality Board that makes policy recommendations after reviewing cases of injury or death for officers or residents and gives injured parties a voice.



We will fight violent repeat offenders by strengthening the Warrant Apprehension Taskforce, employing CitiStat to create a more targeted, impactful approach to chasing down violent offenders, and deploying a better trained police department with stronger connections to the community it serves. This means:


·         Utilizing CitiStat to create data-driven methods that target Baltimore’s violent repeat offenders.

·         Investing in the Warrant Apprehension Unit so that the officers have the resources they need to get violent offenders off the streets.

·         Advocating Truth in Sentencing for violent repeat offenders so that they serve the bulk of their sentences.

·         Utilizing the training facility at Coppin State University for the Police Department and encouraging city officers to pursue study in Criminal Justice by providing tuition reimbursement for officers that agree to a (5) year commitment with the department.

·         Waiving the property tax for police officers willing to live in communities identified as developing communities.

HOW CAN YOU BRING JOBS BACK TO BALTIMORE?

We must attract new business to Baltimore, while providing competitive advantages to our residents to fill the jobs that come with new business. Beyond attracting regional and national employers, we must invest in the small businesses and homegrown entrepreneurs that bring vitality to our local markets and have rooted commitments to our collective success. In this way, we develop a diverse economy with the pool of talent it needs to thrive. The barometer of success should not be solely tied to a four-year college degree, there are amazing associate degrees, certificate programs, and vocational apprenticeships that we must expose to our citizenry.



We will create pipelines to employment by training residents for growing job sectors, facilitating apprenticeship programs with area employers, and providing employer incentives for hiring Baltimore residents. This means:



·         Developing apprenticeship programs that connect Baltimore residents with area businesses.

·         Increasing the competitive advantage of Baltimore apprentices by providing a subsidy to their employers.

·         Creating a Baltimore Neighborhood Corps that employs Baltimore residents to clean and green Baltimore’s neighborhoods.

·         Training City residents for in-demand jobs in healthcare, logistics, and IT at Baltimore City Community College.



We will remove barriers to employment by investing in no-cost expungements, Adult Basic Education, and GED certification for every willing Baltimore resident. This means:



·         Increasing opportunity and reducing recidivism by rerouting Baltimore’s income tax from every ex-offender to businesses that train and hire them for at least (24) months.

·         Creating an expungement task force that provides no-cost expungements for every eligible returning citizen.

·         Creating the Mayor’s Office of Returning Citizens to consolidate job training, employment opportunities, and social services for ex-offenders.

·         Ensuring no resident lacks a basic education by providing GED teaching and testing and arranging classes in computer literacy, for every willing resident without a high school diploma.



We will spur business growth with tax cuts for pass-through entities like LLCs, revamped Enterprise Zones, a robust small business loan fund, gap-financing for smart development in emerging neighborhoods, and a city wide 1 Gigabit fiber optic network that connects Baltimore with the 21st century. This means:



·         Relocating Baltimore’s Enterprise Zones to disinvested communities and refocusing the Zones on attracting manufacturers and new technologies with tax incentives and no-cost land sales of City owned property.

·         Developing a Municipal 1 Gigbit fiber optic network that brings hi-speed, low cost Internet service to every home, business, and institution in Baltimore.

·         Spurring small business growth for City residents by waiving the local income tax on a portion of pass through entities’ profits each year.

·         Creating a small business loan fund that invests in small businesses each year, especially minority- and women-owned businesses, in Baltimore’s BOLD (Building on Leveraged Development) Zones.

·         Promoting Baltimore’s unique culture, while creating jobs and decreasing food deserts, by investing in a City stable for Baltimore’s Arabbers, and facilitating the creation of a Small Grocers Association for new locally owned neighborhood grocery stores.



DO YOU HAVE A PLAN TO LOWER CRIME RATES AND IMPROVE EDUCATION IN POOR NEIGHBORHOODS IN BALTIMORE?

Absolutely!



Accountability in providing quality educational opportunities for all youth, no matter the zip code they reside in, must be a critical focus of City Hall. Our education system should be the launching pad for a vibrant resident base by exposing our youth to careers of the future, providing our youth with the skill set to compete in our job market, and fully equipping our youth to begin building tomorrow’s solutions today.
We will eliminate gaps in the education system, which includes implementing universal prekindergarten, creating magnet middle schools, and bringing Early College High School to scale in Baltimore. This means:



·         Developing a social impact bond for universal prekindergarten so that children are ready to learn when they enter kindergarten.

·         Earmarking City-funding to identify literacy barriers and develop individual learning programs for students behind reading level at 3rd Grade, to decrease long-term literacy gaps.

·         Advocating for the creation of magnet middle schools for STEM, Liberal Arts, and the Performing Arts.

·         Stopping the practice of expelling preschool students, and better incorporating mental health care professionals into early childhood education in Baltimore.

·         Expanding school-based health centers in high schools.



We will build a complete education system that includes tailored attention for all students, implements City Year to create community schools in all of our neighborhoods, and has new recreation centers that ensure students’ well-being after they leave class. This means:



·         Establishing a labor-advisory committee that expands vocational education opportunities and ensures that the training received matches real-world work environments.

·         Building new state-of-the-art recreation centers that utilize vacant spaces, which can include former schools or warehouses.

·         Implementing the City Year program in Baltimore Public Schools to ensure that vulnerable students between 3rd and 9th grade have the support they need to graduate from high school.

·         Improving pipelines to vocational training and higher education by investing in Early College High School so that students graduate with associate degrees.

·         Expanding Youth Works to become a year-round program to incentivize school engagement and expose our youth to the jobs of tomorrow.

·         Collaborating with community partners on an Early Head Start program that better serves children with disabilities.

·         Ensuring that Early Childhood Education programs have a family engagement plan.





We will increase accountability from North Avenue by creating dedicated resources in City Hall that focus on budgeting, program effectiveness, and reports directly to the Mayor so that school policy can become truly informed. This means:



·         Creating a Mayor’s Office of Education Reform tasked with oversight of City funding, and ensuring that the City’s top priorities are being addressed by the Baltimore Public Schools and interconnected with other city agencies, such as Recreation and Parks and the Mayors Office of Educational Development.



HERE ARE THE QUAKER VALUES: SIMPLICITY, PEACE, INTEGRITY, COMMUNITY, EQUALITY, STEWARDSHIP. WHICH ONE REPRESENTS YOU AND WHY?

ALL of these represent me.

·         Simplicity: Often politicians can make things overly and unnecessarily complex. But the basic principles of equality and well-being for all our citizens are very simple.

·         Peace: If there is one thing that 2015 taught us, it’s that peace cannot be kept by force; it can only be achieved by understanding. I truly make an effort to understand everyone’s perspective. Hence, just because we disagree with some, doesn’t mean we have to be disagreeable. You must be at peace with yourself and that makes it easier to create near with others.

·         Integrity: We must choose our thoughts and actions based on values and not personal gain. Politicians are great at making promises. But leaders who operate with integrity are great at keeping them.

·         Community: We are all fruits of someone else’s labor and the Baltimore community has poured so much into me. I am so grateful.  I will spend the rest of my days pouring back into the people of Baltimore myself without measure.  Our success should be judged not on what we have obtained for ourselves but on the tools we have provided the next generation to achieve even greater success.

·         Equality: There will never be justice without equality. We all have differences. And we all deserve to be celebrated for those differences. That’s what makes Charm City so special. We will never have true civilization until we have learned to recognize the rights of everyone.

·         Stewardship: Stewardship means weighing the needs of other people and future generations. We realize that none of us is a self-made person and that part of what we own is wealth that flows from others through us. As a leader, I think more about the next generation instead of the next election. We must put every penny of the city’s budget to its absolute best use. We can’t just survive the moment. We must build for generations to come. And that starts with being a good steward of our resources.

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Interview with Mayoral Candidate Nick Mosby