BALTIMORE, MD (October 7, 2013) - Maryland Legislature's Speaker Michael Busch and Maryland Housing and Community Development Secretary Ray Skinner announced that Central Baltimore Partnership (CBP) is the recipient of a $1.485 million grant for 12 projects within their area of operation through the Baltimore Regional Neighborhood Initiative (BRNI).
"This grant represents an extraordinary opportunity for the neighborhoods of Central Baltimore to continue their forward progress. The recipients represent the range of needs critical to make this community robust and ensure that its residents trust it to be a safe and vibrant place to live, work, and be engaged citizens," said Fred Lazarus IV, president of the Maryland Institute College of Art and chairman of the CBP. [...] READ FULL RELEASE
The Homewood Community Partners Initiative (HCPI) began with an announcement by the Johns Hopkins University president and the trustees had taken the decision to make a special investment in the area next to south of the Homewood campus. The adopted policy framework identified 11 neighborhoods and five topics of concern: clean and safe neighborhoods; blight elimination and housing creation; public education; commercial and retail development; local hiring and purchasing; and workforce development. Hopkins then engaged Joseph McNeely, Executive Director of the Central Baltimore Partnership, to design and facilitate a board community engagement process to identify a strategic, integrated set of programs and investments.
Over seven months the HCPI process consulted with, involved and mobilized the commitment of virtually all stakeholders in the 11 neighborhood areas. The resulting report, Homewood Community Partners Initiative, a Call to Action: Findings and Recommendations, set forth a common vision for the future are, a concise set of strategies for realizing that vision, and the series of program recommendations for advancing those strategies. It calls on a broad range of public, private, and nonprofit interest to collaborate in pursing those strategies and implementing those programs.
During the fall and winter of 2012 various institutions, organizations and neighborhood groups within the 10 neighborhoods reviewed the recommendations and made commitments to be collaborators in and to provide resources for implementing the HCPI agenda. The Central Baltimore Partnership, with support from JHU, has been facilitating collaborative implementation of the recommendations. In December, JHU's president, Ron Daniels, made the first financial commitment, $10 million over five years, toward the total $60 million budget of the HCPI recommendations. Governor Martin O'Malley also made a commitment through the Central Baltimore Partnership, incorporating $3 million in his capital budget for FY 14, the first installment of what is expected to be a multiyear state infusion of resources. The Mayor has committed the city and its agencies to implementing specific recommendations.
The Central Baltimore Partnership established jointly with JHU a 27 member HCPI Task Force, representing a cross-section of stakeholders, to serve as an advisory committee on implementation and on JHU's commitment to implementation. Partnership and JHU staff have been working with existing programs identified for expansion in the HCPI report; and with small ad hoc teams on recommendations for new programs. Proposals for expanding existing programs are being reviewed by stakeholders and the HCPI task force and taken to a variety of funding sources, in some cases including JHU. As soon as resources and capabilities are in place, program expansions will be implemented. The ad hoc teams will be producing fully formed concepts which identify goals, activities, program operators and resource requirements for each of the new programs. These will be reviewed with stakeholders, the HCPI task force and the Central Baltimore Partnership Steering Committee.
Existing programs being planned for expansion: Healthy Neighborhoods; Live near Your Work; school improvement strategies at Margaret Brent and Barclay public schools; public safety.
New programs being developed: development financing gap fund; housing sales campaign; Neighborhood Small Grants Fund.
Over the winter and spring, neighborhood organizations and other stakeholders have also been reviewing the recommendations for community improvements that involve public space and streets, traffic, public safety and other quality of life issues. These are being prioritized and task forces set up on the leading issues.
No events are currently scheduled.