November 2023 Community Meeting

Type of meeting: 
Meeting date: 
Wednesday, November 1, 2023

1.Gary A. Mullen – artist who has gotten permission to paint a mural at Russell and MLK overpass

Works with BOPA, neighborhood design center, and other Baltimore-based arts organizations. Gary presented some examples of murals he’s painted along with Baltimore City high school students.

Proposed design is abstract crab swimming with fish around. Will use bright colors

Has permission from MD DOT and is now seeking funding – needs the RDA’s help. Would like assistance in applying for south Baltimore gateway partnership grant.

Question from Paul R. – how can we as a neighborhood help?

Needs the RDA to apply on his behalf and handle the money bc to apply for one of these grants you must be a registered 501 C3 organization. This will be a future agenda item for the community to discuss.

Question about budget – is $20,000

2. October recap:

  1. Halloween in the tot lot
  2. October HH was at suspended
  3. Mayor’s cleanup organized by Ms. Lillie was a success


3. Upcoming events:

  1. November HH is at the starting lineup this Friday November 3rd starting at 5:30 pm.
  2. December 8th – Holiday Party here at Pickles on December 8th starting at 7 pm. Details to come in the December newsletter.


4. RDA Elections

President – Nicole Dungee – cares about the neighborhood and thinks the RDA is very important. Wants work on getting better participation and new ideas. Has lived in the neighborhood for 25 years and has two kids that attend BCPS.

VP of Operations – Sidas Saulynas –

VP of Communications – Bill Reuter – Has done this role since 2020 – expanded social media and excited to continue.

Secretary – Maia Tatinclaux – Has been secretary since 2020 – has lived in the neighborhood for 9 years.

Treasurer – Billy Huffnell – happy to help as he can and works in finance.

Parliamentarian – Paul Rubenson – has done this for a long time and lived in the neighborhood for a long time and very committed to the neighborhood.

Members at Large:

Molly Goodfellow – been in the neighborhood since 2017 – interested in children and family programming, happy to help as she can.

Julia Lebherz – Has been in the neighborhood for 6 years, made all the meetings last year and happy to serve as an impartial opinion in discussions/debates.

Gerri Salley – has lived in the neighborhood for over 20 years, has worked on safety committee, has done beautification, and chair of parking committee. Wants to benefit the neighborhood.

Nominated from the floor:

Nicole nominated Syrus Razavi, a second year med student and has lived in the neighborhood for 3 years.

Only 4 of 5 members at large have candidates. Proposed changes to the RDA bylaws were presented on the November ballot for the community to vote on.

5. Bill Fergusen – has been a state senator for 13 years, for 3 years Ridgely’s Delight was in his district, then out for last 10, proposed redistricting has us back in his district. Key issues he is currently working on:

  1. Maryland senate put together a series of laws regulating the purchase and possession of guns in response to a US Supreme Court decision. Mr. Ferguson is for preventing further selling and possession of guns due to the violence we see in Baltimore.
  2. Putting an additional measure on the November 2024 ballot re: reproductive rights to privacy and abortion.
  3. First state to start the 988 system (911 for mental health crisis) – this is a reaction to increase in mental health crises following the pandemic

These are just a few initiatives they are working on.

Question about the stadium – what’s happening?

Legislature put forth $600 million in bonding available for both Ravens and Orioles with 25 to 30 year lease. The Ravens signed right away, but Orioles changed during negotiations and there is currently an MOU in place with the Orioles that is not a legally binding document.

Question about what to do at state level about pedestrians being hit by cars. There are examples of drivers having no consequences – the current law is not written like this. This shouldn’t be the case, a victim can file a complaint against the officer or charges against the driver.

Mr. Ferguson addressed the issue with lack of traffic enforcement – it’s the first thing to go when the focus has shifted to addressing and preventing violent crime. Definitely still a big issue.

Question about homeless population – focus in the City has been on increasing affordable housing and available housing for unhoused people. The state is working to help supplement the City’s housing office. The State is focused on providing individual housing units rather than shelters where people often refuse to go because they feel unsafe.

Need more City services to respond to stop people from doing unsafe things that put residents at risk. Also need more City services offered to unhoused people dealing with mental health problems and substance abuse. This needs to come from the Mayor’s office and the City.

6. Results of the election:

All candidates elected

All changes to bylaws passed