Brandon Block


City Council forces incinerator to clean up or shut down

Photo by Artondra Hall, via Flickr

Baltimore’s trash incinerator must drastically reduce its chemical emissions to comply with a bill passed unanimously by the Baltimore City Council on Monday night, which plant officials say may force it to close down.

Founders of Banneker Blake Academy allege bias in push to close charter school

Image courtesy of Benjamin DuBose

Ahead of a school board vote tonight on whether to close Banneker Blake Academy for Arts and Sciences, an all-boys charter aimed at underserved black youth, the school’s founders argue that school district officials are singling them out on the basis of fabricated violations.

“It’s completely untrue,” executive director Carl Stokes, a former city councilman and school board member, said of the claims made in the school district’s Oct. 23 renewal report recommending the Banneker Blake Academy’s closure, which focused heavily on numerous alleged failures to document the delivery of special needs services to students.

With focus on vulnerable House seats, Joshua Harris and the Green Party eye election upsets

Joshua Harris. Image via Facebook.

On paper, the 32-year-old Joshua Harris boasts the kind of background Democratic strategists salivate over. Raised in poverty by a single mother in Chicago, he credits basketball with teaching him the skills that made him the first in his family to graduate from college. In 2012, Harris moved to Baltimore to work for a nonprofit that provides scholarships to African-American youth, and later served as a legislative aide to Democratic Del. Charles Sydnor in Annapolis. He started an arts-based nonprofit in Hollins Market, where he lives, and sits on the boards of numerous community associations, including the Downtown Baltimore Family Alliance, the NAACP’s Baltimore branch and Arena Players, Inc.

New rule would cut emissions at BRESCO incinerator, but nearby residents say it’s not enough

Marvin Hayes, manager of the Baltimore Compost Collective, speaks at a rally calling on the operators of the BRESCO incinerator to further reduce emissions. Photo by Brandon Block.

Laqeisha Greene’s children suffer from asthma, and she said they’ve been hospitalized for it three times in the past year and a half.

“My children can’t go outside to play,” the South Baltimore resident said, “because of these emissions that are being produced by BRESCO.”

Q&A: The creators of ‘Putin On Ice’ discuss Russian history, theater as protest and the ‘Putin in us’

Photo by Britt Olsen-Ecker.

Playwright Lola B. Pierson and director Yury Urnov are adamant that their new show has nothing to do with news items about Vladimir Putin or Donald Trump, is not a part of the #resistance, is not even about Putin, really.

After review, City Schools overturns scoring error that left English for Speakers of Other Languages students out of selective high schools

Three students with the group SOMOS testify at a June 12 school board meeting.

Twenty-four eighth graders in Baltimore City’s English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) program have been offered spots at selective high schools this coming year after a June internal review by City Schools of a scoring error, Baltimore Fishbowl has learned after filing a public information request with City Schools.

Activists: ICE ‘arbitrarily’ detains woman who had been making routine check-ins

Marta Rodriguez looks to the heavens after leaving her appointment with ICE in May. Photo by Brandon Block.

After self-reporting in May without incident, a New Carrollton woman who appeared for her check-in with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement at the agency’s Baltimore field office was detained this morning.

For second time, Keith Davis Jr. trial ends with a hung jury

Keith Davis Jr. Image via Facebook

For the second time, the trial of Keith Davis Jr. in the shooting death of Pimlico Race Course security guard Kevin Jones has ended with a hung jury.

This was Davis’ third trial for the murder of Jones, who was shot 11 times on his way to work in the early morning of June 7, 2015.

‘Family belongs together’: One woman walks out of the Baltimore ICE field office, though not everyone gets to leave

Marta Rodriguez looks to the heavens after leaving her appointment with ICE. Photo by Brandon Block.

Marta Rodriguez walked out the front door of the Baltimore Immigration and Customs Enforcement field office and everyone cheered.

The crowd of 100 or so friends, family, church members, and organizers–holding signs with phrases like “sanctuary for all,” “keep families together” and “we stand with Marta”–had accompanied her to her ICE check-in earlier this morning, because they weren’t sure if she was coming back.

Q&A: Three Goats Baltimore owners talk growing up in East Baltimore, not giving bougie status to street food, and more

Chef Michael “Curly” McRae, left, and Gabe Holden at Three Goats Baltimore. Photo by Brandon Block.

“It’s only him and I,” says chef Michael “Curly” McRae. “We’re the dishwasher, security, everything.”

“Him” would be Gabe Holden, who, along with McRae, launched the new Three Goats Baltimore, an outrageously down-to-earth taco and arepa dive in Mount Vernon on Jan. 28. Although the two met only nine years ago, they spent their childhoods orbiting each other in East Baltimore.