1-year candidate residency rule restored

Schmoke backs action

state had cut time in half

June 02, 1999|By Gerard Shields | Gerard Shields,SUN STAFF

The Baltimore City Council unanimously voted last night to restore the one-year residency requirement for city mayoral candidates, reversing a state law approved in April by Gov. Parris N. Glendening that trimmed the term to six months.

Mayor Kurt L. Schmoke said last week that he would sign the measure. The state law, introduced by some Baltimore legislators, was intended to entice Kweisi Mfume, president of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, to run for mayor. Mfume announced last week that he would not be a candidate.

West Baltimore Councilman Keiffer J. Mitchell Jr., who supported Mfume's candidacy but opposed changing the residency law, welcomed last night's council vote as keeping the city charter intact. Mitchell called the General Assembly's change in the city law a slap to the council.

"This shows some backbone and shows our strength," Mitchell said. "We want to make sure that the next mayor of Baltimore knows all the ins and outs of our city and its people."

In other action, Southeast Baltimore City Councilman Nicholas C. D'Adamo Jr. introduced a bill that he hopes will recruit police officers to Baltimore. Later this summer, the Police Department expects as many as 250 officers to retire when an incentive program expires. Under the bill, the city would allow officers from surrounding communities to come into the force with up to five years of experience and receive similar pay. Now, regardless of experience, they must start with rookie pay at $27,312.

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