Rawlings-Blake: Votes Have Nothing To Do With Husband’s Job
BALTIMORE (WJZ)—Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake says she’s done nothing wrong. Now the Baltimore Sun’s editorial board agrees. It sides against questions raised in a recent newspaper report involving the mayor, her husband and ethics.
Adam May has the latest twist at City Hall.
Rawlings-Blake responded to the Sun article and headline her staff calls “exaggerated.” It claims she voted on deals involving her husband’s employer.
“Let me be clear, not a single one of the routine items approved by the Board of Estimates since December has anything to do with my husband’s job,” Rawlings-Blake said.
Kent Blake was recently hired by Hopkins Community Physicians as a patient intake coordinator.
As he was scheduling appointments in a call center, the mayor did vote to approve grants for Johns Hopkins.
But according to a list of the grants obtained by WJZ, the $ 900,000 in question does not involve her husband’s direct employer. Instead most of the money is for HIV prevention and treatment.
The city solicitor is now reviewing the ethics code. He also told our media partner, the Baltimore Sun, the mayor’s husband works for a separate legal entity than Johns Hopkins itself.
“While I’m waiting for a full briefing from the city solicitor, based on the votes I’ve taken, he sees no ethical lapse,” Rawlings-Blake said.
And now the Sun’s editorial board agrees.
Titled “No Conflict of Interest,” it writes the mayor has voted on a dozen contracts involving the sprawling entity that is Johns Hopkins, but none of them directly involve the branch her husband works for.
Editors also suggest the mayor could have avoided the issue if she had been open about her husband’s new job.
Rawlings-Blake has abstained from votes involving Community Physicians since December.
She’s waiting for the opinion from the city solicitor on how to proceed with future votes for Hopkins as a whole.