BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Baltimore City Councilwoman Shannon Sneed is pushing for residency requirements for certain Baltimore City Police command staff, with a council bill proposed at a council meeting on July 13.
The ordinance, “Baltimore City Police Officials- Residency Requirements (20-0562), allows the Mayor and City Council to require Baltimore City Police command staff at the rank of captain and above to live in the City.
Sneed said she believes residency requirements is one way to ensure public employees both “respond and care about their constituents,”
“Public employees who live in their jurisdiction and have constituents as neighbors, are relatable and have a stake in the community in which they serve,” she said in a statement Thursday.
Under the bill, each command staff must be a resident and registered voter of the City at the time of the command staff member’s appointment and remain a resident and registered voter of the City throughout the entire time of office.
They would have 120 days after the date of hire or promotion to a command staff member position to begin to reside in the City.
She cited a level of mistrust in the City’s local institutions and said City residents “deserve officers who are willing to improve community relations,”
If a command staff member failed to comply, they would be automatically terminated, under the conditions of the bill.
The police commissioner would also have to submit a report to the Mayor and City Council detailing the residency and voter registration status of all command staff members by June 30 each year.
If passed, they propose the ordinance would take effect on January 1, 2022. Read the full council bill here.