Hutchinson calls for regional unity

May 03, 1994|By John E. Woodruff | John E. Woodruff,Sun Staff Writer

The Baltimore area's growth will be limited until "we take seriously the need to think, plan and act as a single region," Donald P. Hutchinson told the Greater Baltimore Committee last night.

"We talk about it at cocktail parties, but we do not do anything to challenge anyone to do something" about knitting the area into a vTC single market, said the former Baltimore County executive, who was named president of the area's most influential businessmen's association last year.

Mr. Hutchinson recalled a painful Baltimore memory to drive home his message. "Indianapolis might never have taken the Colts [football team] away from Baltimore if that area had not organized itself on an urban-suburban regional basis," he said.

Mr. Hutchinson urged GBC members to serve as the "regional strategic problem-solver" to tackle the area's two most pressing problems: crime and education.

"Crime is not the city's problem; it is the region's problem," he said.

He called for a new night court as the center of a 24-hour regional criminal law cooperation effort.

Also last night, the GBC elected William L. Jews, president of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Maryland, as its chairman, succeeding lawyer Decatur H. Miller.

The night also was Gov. William Donald Schaefer's eighth and last GBC annual meeting as governor and his 23rd including his years as mayor of Baltimore.

"I like this last year the best," the governor said after listening to eulogy-like praise from all sides, including Mayor Kurt L. Schmoke, "though sometimes it makes me wonder if I'm still living."

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