Real Transformation Calls on Baltimore City Liquor Stores to Follow Laws on Book

Real Transformation Calls on Baltimore City Liquor Stores to Follow Laws on Book

Contributor Cory McCray. Photo source: corymccray.com
Contributor Cory McCray. Photo source: corymccray.com

Have you ever heard of Transform Baltimore? Well a few months ago, I read an article about the initiative to create healthier neighborhoods/communities within Baltimore City. I was most impressed by the conversations about reducing the amount of liquor stores in the urban community. I thought that everyone was aware of the damage that corners inundated with liquor stores can produce, and how the Transform Baltimore initiative to have liquor stores follow the laws on the books would eventually reduce the problem and send Baltimore in the right direction. Well, the no-brainer isn’t really a no-brainer. This discussion is being brought in front of the Baltimore City Council and possibly to the Mayor of Baltimore City if it makes if it makes it passed the Baltimore City Council first. There is a possibility that this may not make it out of the Baltimore City Council.

I was taken back upon finding out, which made me research the issue a little more. I would like to shed light on facts that I found relevant upon conducting my research:

• Neighborhoods that are inundated with liquor stores are associated with higher rates of violent crime such as homicides, rape, aggravated assaults, rape, robbery, burglary.

• Low-income neighborhoods are the most adversely affected with the over concentration of liquor stores.

• Today there are 1,300 liquor stores in Baltimore City with a decreasing population, that at one time had over one million residents.

• In 1971, Baltimore City Zoning Code calls for 1 liquor license per 1,000 residences, and with today's population Baltimore City should have 625 liquor licenses.

• In 1971, Baltimore City Zoning Code did not permit new Class A liquor licenses to be distributed in residential neighborhoods.

• Non-Conforming Liquor stores that are still in residential neighborhoods are generally in areas with high poverty levels.

We know the problem; there is a viable and easy solution to rebuild neighborhoods in Baltimore City. The facts are listed; I would ask that everyone follow the issue as it goes before the Baltimore City Council. The future depends on the choices that you make today.

This article was originally posted on Cory McCray's blog.

Cory V. McCray was born and raised in Baltimore City and currently resides in the Overlea Community. He received his education through the Baltimore City Public School System. After graduating from High School, he completed a five-year apprenticeship program with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 24. By the age of twenty-one, he became an accomplished business owner in the Belair-Edison community. Since the age of 24, he has devoted his time to giving back to the communities in the Northeast Baltimore area by presiding on several executive boards, while also participating actively with numerous local unions. He continues to be an energetic advocate for social justice and wears many hats in support of effective leadership.

To learn more about Cory, visit his website, CoryMcCray.com.