This video shows how Baltimore citizens CAN BE ENGAGED in our public policy and we thank citizens for all their hard work. Again, I would caution that too many steps in this process remain in place and it appears likely 1% Wall Street pols are MOVING FORWARD with export terminals along our waterfront. It was Baltimore County's Kamenetz partnered with far-right Clinton neo-liberal O'Malley that handed Sparrow's Point to these kinds of developments---KNOWING THESE GOALS.
Over a decade ago there was nationwide protest to the public policy being floated by Republican think tanks. These were tied to wanting to hand US ports to outsourced operations by China. 1% Wall Street global pols choose China because of the decades of International Economic Zone structures in China. The goals of outsourcing to global corporations is to have US ports operate in the US just as they do in International Economic Zones overseas----with NO US RULE OF LAW, NO US CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS, AND NO NATIONAL, STATE, OR LOCAL SOVEREIGNTY.
These port policies are illegal, unconstitutional, and a threat to our local sovereignty and citizens in communities around the Baltimore port waterfront will have absolutely no say in how these industrial policies affect their communities.
AES Sparrows Point LNG & Mid-Atlantic Express'
The idea that any global corporation is taking any environmental concerns seriously is laughable.
Maxine Thompson FERC Testimony on AES LNG Proposal
Uploaded on Jun 10, 2008AES Sparrows Point Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) and Mid-Atlantic Express, LLC Pipeline hearing before the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) for the Draft Environmental Impact Statement.
Patapsco High School, Baltimore, Maryland, Monday, June 9, 2008
Videographer: Sandy N. McDonald, III
Here was the conversation a decade ago under Bush Admin telling WE THE PEOPLE the US is not capable of controlling our own US ports. We don't have the know-how---the capability to build corporations that can do so. OH, REALLY???? Wasn't it global Wall Street and CLINTON/BUSH/OBAMA who built those same global ports in International Economic Zones these few decades? Why, yes because the US had the know-how and China did not. This is NPR posing progressive by writing an article allowing 1% Wall Street to claim we must have foreign corporations controlling US ports.
I knew in 2006 the goals of US cities deemed International Economic Zones were driving these outsourcing to foreign corporations. It had nothing to do with not being capable---and this is when national sovereignty issues soared with WE THE PEOPLE in both Republican and Democratic Parties. So, Baltimore City seems to be the point of foreign port control on East Coast no doubt because other east coast port cities would have citizens THROWING THOSE 1% WALL STREET GLOBAL POLS OUT OF OFFICE!
'The first is for the handful of existing U.S.-owned companies to take over all foreign owned terminals. That, he says, is simply inconceivable. These companies would have to instantly grow to ten times their current size'.
Most U.S. Port Terminals Are Foreign-Run
February 26, 200611:59 AM ET
Adam Davidson NPR
Critics of the Dubai Ports World deal have suggested that U.S. ports should be run by U.S. companies. But the vast majority of port terminals are leased and run by foreign companies and that's unlikely to change.
DON GONYEA, host:
With Democratic and Republican politicians challenging a Bush Administration plan to hire a company from Dubai to manage terminals at six American ports, the company this weekend said it was willing to wait 45 days to allow for a more extensive security investigation, that according to the Associated Press.
Several politicians have suggested that no foreign company should manage operations at United States ports. NPR's Adam Davidson looked into how many American port terminals are managed by foreign companies, and what it would take to ensure that only American companies manage American ports.
ADAM DAVIDSON reporting:
There are about 15 major ports in the U.S. Each is divided into a handful of separately operated terminals. That makes roughly 100 terminals.
SSA Marine is the single biggest U.S.-owned terminal operator.
Mr. BOB WATERS (Vice President, SSA Marine): We operate seven of those terminals.
DAVIDSON: Bob Waters is SSA Vice President. And let me repeat what he just said: the biggest U.S.-owned terminal operator manages seven terminals. The next biggest? That's Maher Terminals, in Elizabeth, New Jersey. They manage one terminal. Waters says about a dozen are managed by city or state governments.
Mr. WATERS: Other than that, the rest of the terminals, which comprises about 80 percent of those terminals we're talking about, are operated by foreign entities, primarily shipping lines.
DAVIDSON: So United States companies have eight, foreign companies have 80. Those companies managing U.S. terminals are all over the world, in China, Denmark, Singapore, South Korea.
Could SSA Marine, the nation's biggest terminal manager, take over a significant number of those foreign managed ports?
Mr. WATERS: Well, it would be an interesting challenge.
DAVIDSON: It wouldn't be a challenge, says Peter Tirschwell, publisher of the Journal of Commerce, it would be nearly impossible.
Mr. PETER TIRSCHWELL (Publisher, Journal of Commerce): It would be an extraordinary upheaval, so large as to be difficult to even contemplate it.
DAVIDSON: Imagine that Congress does mandate that only United States companies can operate terminals in U.S. ports, Tirschwell says. There would be two options, and neither is good.
The first is for the handful of existing U.S.-owned companies to take over all foreign owned terminals. That, he says, is simply inconceivable. These companies would have to instantly grow to ten times their current size.
The other option is for U.S. companies in other industries to start offering terminal operation services. That's equally hard to imagine, Tirschwell says.
Mr. TIRSCHWELL: It's a very complex business, and the companies that do it, they all do it on the basis of years of management and expertise, you know, literally refined over decades. It's not the type of business that outsiders traditionally enter.
DAVIDSON: Tirschwell says this isn't just an issue for people who happen to work at ports. The U.S. way of life, our economy, is based on the fast and free flow of internationally traded goods.
A dramatic transformation of the U.S. port system would all but certainly disrupt that trade, he says, and hurt the U.S. economy.
Joe King, former chief of the Terrorism Unit at U.S. Customs, says government has to secure our ports, even if it comes at a cost.
Mr. JOE KING (Former Chief, U.S. Customs Terrorism Unit): There is always a debate in the U.S. government between trade and security. For the last 20 years, trade is winning it.
DAVIDSON: Even King says that foreign ownership is inevitable. Too much security could cause real pain.
Mr. KING: You'd have containers backed up that you could walk across the Pacific Ocean on, they'd be so tightly packed.
DAVIDSON: Some, like Senator Hillary Clinton, have suggested that the U.S. should allow foreign companies to run U.S. terminals, but forbid companies owned by foreign governments. That's almost equally impossible, says Tirschwell, of the Journal of Commerce.
He points out that foreign governments have interests in many U.S. ports. The government of Singapore owns most of a company that operates terminals in Los Angeles and elsewhere. Two Chinese companies, both with close ties to the Chinese government, manage terminals in New York, Long Beach, and other places. And the government of Venezuela owns all or part of marine terminal management at ports in Pennsylvania and Maine.
Adam Davidson, NPR News, New York.
As this article shows-----these kinds of foreign economic zone ports have nothing to do with American business----no goals of making America or the American people strong. These 1% global rich are team ONE WORLD and they do not care as they expand who has interests here or there--they are working together to break down national sovereignty around the world. The Chinese 1% allowed global Wall Street to do so in their nation and now US 1% are returning the favor.
These issues are the 1% real estate policies for ALL US CITY COMMUNITIES---so a Canton community would want the surrounding communities developed as local economies in order that THEY had voices as citizens. No one wins with these kinds of global real estate ZONING AND PERMITTING policies. Sparrow's Points is Baltimore County----Port Covington is Baltimore City and both have used local community association leadership to push all these zoning and permitting policies through claiming them to benefit existing community citizens WHEN THEY WILL NOT.
THE US DOES NOT WANT TO SUBSCRIBE TO THESE SUPERSIZED VISIONS OF GLOBAL CORPORATE CAMPUSES, GLOBAL PORTS, OR GLOBAL FACTORIES---we cannot have a democratic republic with rights as citizens living developed nation lives---no middle-class will rise from extreme poverty.
This is how we know all the shouting in Congress over China's rise in global economics is PRETEND. 1% Wall Street global pols are partnered with the global 1% and their 2% in ONE WORLD policies.
'Chinese firms may also subscribe to a supersized vision of the industry in which an elite group of ports caters to a new generation of mega-vessels'.
China’s foreign ports
The new masters and commanders
China’s growing empire of ports abroad is mainly about trade, not aggression
Jun 8th 2013 | COLOMBO | From the print edition The Economist
FROM the ground, Colombo’s port does not look like much. Those entering it are greeted by wire fences, walls dating back to colonial times and security posts. For mariners leaving the port after lonely nights on the high seas, the delights of the B52 Night Club and Stallion Pub lie a stumble away. But viewed from high up in one of the growing number of skyscrapers in Sri Lanka’s capital, it is clear that something extraordinary is happening: China is creating a shipping hub just 200 miles from India’s southern tip.
The old port is cramped and stuffed full of containers. To its left, a vast new breakwater curves into the ocean. Alongside it a Chinese ship has just delivered three giant Chinese cranes (see picture) to a new container terminal built by a Chinese company and run by an entity controlled by another Chinese firm. The terminal opens in July and will be complete in April 2014. The old port took centuries to reach its present capacity. China will have almost doubled it in under 30 months. Operated at full capacity, it would make Colombo one of the world’s 20 biggest container ports.
This development has split opinion in Sri Lanka. At a gathering of Colombo’s old salts, the mood is optimistic. Tales of Chinese domination are “just scaremongering” says one captain. The port will push Colombo into the big league, says the boss of a repair yard. A few are nervous, though. The Chinese have a hidden agenda, says someone close to the ports authority.
EDITED OUT----PLEASE GOOGLE TO READ ALL.
Darling can’t you hear me, SOS
There are risks to China’s port strategy. The world economy may not recover quickly. Today’s slow growth lowers demand for containers. It also means many shipping lines are losing money, making them nervous about raising capacity by launching lots of new mega-ships. That in turn allows smaller ports to stay competitive.
The immediate outlook is tough for Colombo’s new terminal, in part because of India’s woes. India’s container traffic, having grown at a blistering pace, declined by 4% in April compared with the same month last year. “We never imagined this situation,” says an Indian port boss. Then there is competition. Vallarpadam, a port in the Indian state of Kerala owned by DP World, is only a third full. India’s bureaucrats have relaxed their fiddly rules to help it compete. Ports in Mumbai and Mundra, in west India, already get lots of direct calls from global lines. Other ports such as Chennai are slowly winning more, too.
The age of the mega-ship might secure Colombo’s position, but it is some way off. The initial schedules for the new Maersk and CMA CGM vessels do not include stops in Colombo. Local agents hope other lines will try the port this year. Some expect that patriotic Chinese shipping lines will shift their business to Colombo from other big Asian ports. But that is a stretch. They are losing money and may not want to subsidise Sri Lanka. In 2012 Aitken Spence, a local firm, sold its stake in Colombo’s new terminal, arguing that it was not profitable. Some reckon it will take 15 years for it to break even.
Yet the port industry is about strong nerves. Eventually a recovery will materialise. In fact, the long-term challenge for China’s port operators may be commercial success. If they do create hubs for other countries, these firms’ association—unfairly, or otherwise—with China’s strategic interests will be a liability. Colombo is an example. India’s security grumbles are partly posturing. China is its biggest trading partner, and India’s main state-owned shipping firm gets its vessels repaired in China. But should Sri Lanka ever succeed in dominating India’s trade while being a close Chinese ally, India would surely improve its ports enough to be independent.
Experiences elsewhere offer no clear-cut guide. After political tensions in the South China Sea, China Merchants has withdrawn from a port project in Vietnam. But Cosco’s Piraeus investment, once controversial, is a success, with profits rising and the firm winning plaudits for investing and creating jobs for Greeks.
China’s port strategy is mainly motivated by commercial impulses. It is natural that a country of its clout has a global shipping and ports industry. But it could become a flashpoint for diplomatic tensions. That is the pessimistic view. The optimistic one is that the more it invests, the more incentive China has to rub along better with its trading partners. This, not deliberate expansionism, is what the locals are betting on in Colombo.
Citizens of Baltimore County have been as mad about development as citizens in Baltimore and it is because MASTER PLAN ONE WORLD BALTIMORE is GREATER BALTIMORE---it takes much of surrounding counties as well. Here we see the same annual parade of media reports pretending there are goals of development in Dundalk---when it is right next to Sparrow's Point and will be enfolded into all of global Port of Baltimore industrial global corporate control. As we read in this article Dundalk as in Baltimore communities have associations pushing the zoning and permitting needed for global Port of Baltimore while pretending all this brings JOBS, JOBS, JOBS AFFORDABLE HOUSING AFFORDABLE HOUSING AFFORDABLE HOUSING.
'Across the street from Merritt Park is the North Point Government Center, which the county is selling to a developer to turn into a shopping center to be called Merritt Pavilion. That project has been tied up in legal and zoning issues'.
THESE POLITICIANS ARE NEITHER DEMOCRAT NOR REPUBLICAN---THEY ARE SIMPLY SHOW ME THE MONEY 1% GLOBAL WALL STREET ONE WORLD PLAYERS.
Democrats and Republicans do not push policy that kills national and local free markets----that kills citizens voice in their own government----that kills our local and national sovereignty---but here we see Baltimore County pols as with Baltimore City doing all of the above-----they are Wall Street players ---get rid of them!
I would say that Crandell was never a Democrat----he was a 1% Wall Street global corporate neo-liberal but he is at least now running as a far-right Reagan Republican
'Crandell Switches Parties, Targets Olszewski
The former Dundalk Democrat has joined the Republican Party and set his sites on unseating the four-term incumbent
By Bryan P. Sears (Patch Staff) - July 5, 2013 5:34 am ET'
Baltimore County Council approves new Dundalk-area revitalization district
Contact ReporterThe Baltimore Sun
Councilman Todd Crandell, a Dundalk Republican, said the area "could use some incentive for revitalization."The Baltimore County Council agreed Monday to designate a group of properties along Merritt Boulevard in Dundalk as the county's 18th commercial revitalization district.
"This is an area that could use some incentive for revitalization," said Councilman Todd Crandell, a Dundalk Republican who represents the area and sponsored the bill.
The revitalization zone includes commercial buildings, a union office and a fire station. The district includes an area near the intersection of Peninsula Expressway and Merritt Boulevard, and stretches west to Sollers Point Road. It includes properties on Merritt Avenue and Eilers Avenue.
Properties within commercial revitalization districts are eligible for programs and incentives aimed at improving their appearance and marketability.
Within the districts, the county offers free "architect on call" consulting for exterior design projects, as well as interest-free loans for exterior improvements, tax credits for improvements and grants for projects such as hosting farmers' markets and improving security.
Dundalk government center stalled amid legal, political wrangling
Crandell said the nearby Merritt-Sollers Point area has "stagnant economic development." He described the new revitalization zone as a "small but important corridor" for Dundalk. He said multiple properties in the new zone are for sale, and he hopes the incentives now available might make them more attractive to potential buyers.
Crandell's bill creating the district passed unanimously. It was co-sponsored by Council Chairwoman Vicki Almond, a Reisterstown Democrat.
Dundalk is beginning to see an uptick in commercial investment. North of the new revitalization area on Merritt Boulevard is the Merritt Park Shopping Center, which has seen a face-lift and the addition of two restaurants: Texas Roadhouse and Chili's.
Across the street from Merritt Park is the North Point Government Center, which the county is selling to a developer to turn into a shopping center to be called Merritt Pavilion. That project has been tied up in legal and zoning issues.
A few miles away is the former Bethlehem Steel mill at Sparrows Point, where a redevelopment project is expected to boost the area's profile and employment. The steel mill site has been sold and rebranded as Tradepoint Atlantic, an industrial campus. FedEx is opening a distribution hub there, and Tradepoint Atlantic will unveil a new marketing center this week in hope of attracting more tenants.
The Merritt-Sollers Point Commercial Revitalization District is the third such district in Dundalk. The others are the Dundalk district in the Old Dundalk neighborhood and the North Point district, centered around the intersection of Merritt Boulevard and Wise Avenue.
Other Baltimore County revitalization districts are in downtown Towson, on Frederick Road in Catonsville, on Eastern Boulevard in Essex and on Belair Road in Overlea.
Baltimore has over these few decades seen a downtown development having nothing to do with bringing economic stability and community strength----it simply has been one hotel and restaurant after another. We watch as restaurants fail and hotel rooms are largely empty because this is building FOR ONE WORLD BALTIMORE----here we have yet again the same development in Canton extending from Harbor Point where we see nothing but global hotels and restaurants encircling our Baltimore Harbor. We know the jobs that come with these industries---global labor pool and third world wages.
Think a few decades from now how this development will effect our homeowners in these gentrified communities---they are not building to strengthen our middle-class homeowners---they are creating what will accomodate traveling global executives---there is no stability in communities where everyone is tourist/global business people.
MANIFEST DESTINY------FOR GLOBAL 1% AND THEIR 2%!
'Gesturing to a map of the eastern edge of the city, with new blooms of buildings in Harbor East, Harbor Point, Brewers Hill and Canton, the architect working with COPT called the firm's plans "kind of manifest destiny."'
There is no one more the Wall Street player than Cole---the farm team O'Malley
HARBOR EAST IS A LIVE, WORK, PLAY COMMUNITY? I'm there all the time-------I don't see too many happy citizens
"I think long term, you're going to see the areas ultimately develop," he said, citing the 20-some years it took for Harbor East to come into its own as a "live-work-play" community."
BILL COLE OF WALL STREET BALTIMORE DEVELOPMENT WILL LOOK INTO IT. REALLY???
With two new projects, waterfront development would continue
The master plan presented by Corporate Office Properties Trust for its $1 billion Canton Crossing project, where it wants to build five to six office buildings and a marina with restaurants and possibly residences.
(Elkus Manfredi Architects)
Natalie ShermanContact Reporter
Two new projects continue Bmore waterfront's evolution: It's "kind of manifest destiny."Two new proposed office projects in Canton and Harbor Point presented to the city Thursday would continue the evolution of Baltimore's Inner Harbor from its industrial past to a work-live-play future.
Corporate Office Properties Trust, the big Columbia-based real estate trust, started seeking city approval for a roughly $1 billion development that would transform 10 acres of east Canton waterfront into a new urban center with five or six office buildings, a hotel, restaurants and shopping, a marina and potentially residences.
Beatty Development Group also presented initial plans to the city's design panel for its fourth building in Harbor Point, a 315,000-square-foot office and hotel complex next to the Morgan Stanley Thames Street Wharf building.
Both projects sustain the eastward march of commercial renewal along the Inner Harbor that started with Harbor East and what was the 1st Mariner Bank tower, now named for insurer CareFirst, and continues with the ongoing development of Harbor Point.
Gesturing to a map of the eastern edge of the city, with new blooms of buildings in Harbor East, Harbor Point, Brewers Hill and Canton, the architect working with COPT called the firm's plans "kind of manifest destiny."
Tower at Harbor Point starts to rise
"The building that's the CareFirst building now was maybe out ahead of its time in terms of development … but that was a good thing, because now the marketplace and the city has begun to catch up," said David Manfredi, a principal at Boston-based Elkus Manfredi Architects. "Certainly our adjacency to Canton … leads to the logical conclusion that there is the opportunity to do something urban, mixed-use, with real density and really extend the water's edge, not only in terms of development, but in terms of access."
COPT's plans call for 1.1 million square feet of office buildings, 100,000 square feet of retail and dining space, a 300-room hotel, 350 residential units, 200 marina slips and 100,000-square-feet of development — likely residences and restaurants — on a new pier. The waterfront promenade would be extended. Designs also call for a small green space.
COPT eyes office development along Canton waterfront
Neither COPT nor Beatty Development said they intend to start building without tenants.
At Harbor Point, Beatty Development is starting to pitch its proposed 135-foot-tall building, to include a roughly 156-room hotel, to tenants, said Jody Clark, the firm's chief operating officer.
Developer Michael Beatty, who helped the Paterakis family create Harbor East, launched his own firm in 2013 to develop Harbor Point. The 20-story Exelon tower is underway there now. The firm also expects to start construction of the 289-unit Point Street Apartments in September.
Wayne H. Lingafelter, president at COPT's development and construction arm, said his firm is "cautiously optimistic" that it might begin infrastructure work at the site about this time next year. He said COPT likely will seek a partnership with the city on some of that work and with other groups for the residential and hotel portions of the project.
COPT is a real estate investment trust that historically has focused on suburban office buildings in the Mid-Atlantic but recently began diversifying with some urban properties. It recently added two downtown office buildings to its portfolio, including the Transamerica tower for $121 million. As of June 30, it owned 179 offices properties with about 18 million square feet of space.
The firm is negotiating with Exxon Mobil, which once owned the Canton site, about undoing restrictions on the deed that currently prevent residential development, Lingafelter said.
The oil company declined to comment on potential changes to the deed restrictions.
Baltimore Development Corp. President William H. Cole IV said the city is supportive of the project, but discussions have not started about specific contributions and it is too early to say what, if anything, the city would be prepared to contribute.
"It's very early," he said. "I'm thrilled to have them and excited to work with them."
Demand for office space could allow one of COPT's proposed buildings and the new one in Harbor Point to rise within five years, though they raise questions for older office buildings in downtown's historic core, said Bob Manekin, managing director of Baltimore's Colliers International offices, who works on office leasing.
He suggested that COPT could have an easier time finding a tenant in the near term than Beatty Development, given expected rents, which he anticipates will be higher in Harbor Point to make up for the expense of constructing on the capped former chromium site. For people coming from I-95, the Canton location also avoids traffic on Boston Street.
"I think long term, you're going to see the areas ultimately develop," he said, citing the 20-some years it took for Harbor East to come into its own as a "live-work-play" community."
COPT's site is part of a larger group of parcels once owned by Edwin F. Hale Sr., who won city approval in 2002 for 1.5 million square feet of office space, as well as residential, retail and hotel buildings and a marina there.
COPT, one of four groups that now own pieces of that site, is asking the city to allow it to increase the density of development allowed on the land still governed by that plan, bringing total development to nearly 2.2 million square feet of office, about 278,000 square feet of retail, 712 residential units, 300 hotel rooms and an additional 100,000 square feet of development on the pier.
Other projects are also in the works.
Merritt Properties, which owns about 2.2 acres there, said this spring it wants to build a parking garage behind its athletic club on Boston Street and an office building in what is now a parking lot on Boston Street. Georgia-based Pollack Shores also is seeking approval for an apartment building.
All the new development would increase the number of required parking spaces in the area by 4,500 for a total of more than 7,000. There are currently about 2,500.
Some parts of the plan remain up for discussion. Under current city regulations, any development on a pier must have uses that relate to the water, planning director Thomas J. Stosur said.
The main road providing access to the site, Clinton Street, is also a truck route serving what remains an industrial port zone just to the south.
Cole said the city would work with the developer on traffic issues.
"We'll work with the developer and all adjacent developers on any and all solutions that we can come up with to help ease traffic issues over there, but we live in a city and I don't believe we should base all of our decisions on traffic," he said. "These are urban areas, so density is generally a good thing."
Members of the Urban Design & Architecture Review Panel did not object to the added development but said they wanted to see traffic studies and understand better how the height of the buildings would affect shadows at nearby parks.
The proposed buildings range from small one-story structures to a 400-foot residential tower — about 100 feet taller than the adjacent CareFirst structure. They would stand next to Canton's waterfront park.
Gary Bowden, a UDARP member who lives on the waterfront, said he did not want to see the park's harbor views get blocked by the marina and "rich people's boats."
"I'm concerned about any more marina development in this part of the city, particularly along the public walkway," he said.
Discussion of the public space also dominated discussion of the Harbor Point project, which included changes that reduce the amount park space between the two office buildings and add a traffic circle that extends to the water.
Clark said Beatty Development anticipated the criticism and would look at possible changes.
Below we see the perfect example of how our US cities deemed Foreign Economic Zones have community associations that fill with GLOBAL WALL STREET PLAYERS---as time comes to develop that community. Here we see the Canton Community Association just as East Baltimore had its community association filled with Johns Hopkins and Wall Street Baltimore Development leaders pushing to build that huge global corporate campus for Hopkins. Mr. Flanagan is that NEW BALTIMORE CITIZEN hailing from Bloomberg's NYC and look----he is an UnderArmour executive---so, how do we think a CCA President tied to global UnderArmour from NYC will move public policy regarding zoning, permitting, and development?
Senior Creative Director at Under Armour
Baltimore, Maryland Area
Marketing and Advertising
- Siquis, Ltd.,
- Frank Strategic Marketing,
- Pratt InstitutePratt InstituteGreater New York City Area
This is all we hear in Baltimore-----Baltimore City Hall is just giving citizens what they want----it is these community association leaders that city hall sees as all Baltimore citizens.
Below we see where the fledgling CCA is looking to appear connected to the community. The standard of action in Baltimore with any Wall Street Baltimore Development Corporation 'LABOR AND JUSTICE' organization and these community associations is to install team Wall Street first and then recruit citizens with team Wall Street directing most of the policy stances in that association.
'Doug Kaufman, Vice President, and Valerie Kent, Board member, spoke about the Marketing Committee. The process was started in April for a marketing audit. She said the CCA knows it needs to communicate better and to have a greater sense of community'.
Canton Community Association
CCA Minutes for 12/9/2015Jan. 6, 2016
CCA Public Meeting December 9, 2015
The meeting started at 7:05PM in the Church on the Square. President Sean Flanagan introduced himself and thanked everyone for attending. The food was supplied by Pie 360 at 3731 Boston Street. He said this is the latest we have had a Public meeting. The one in October was with Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake. The meeting in November was with Recs and Parks discussing the Canton Waterfront plans.
Sean said the CCA is working on several issues including Transform Baltimore and the Canton Waterfront. A marketing survey was conducted with 370 responses received; this should help us build the Canton Community Association.
There will be Board elections in January if anyone is interested.
The December 1 date for the Canton Library reopening has passed. The equipment is still there. It is hoped to be opened by the middle of February 2016. The CCA made a $5,000 contribution to the library fund.
There is a boxing event at the DuBurns Arena this Saturday, December 12 which will bring in about 1,000 people. There will be an impact on the neighborhood.
There is a meeting on Monday, December 14 about the St. Patrick’s Day Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). It will be here at the church. The CCA’s Economic Development Committee (EDC) meeting is the same night at the Broom Factory.
Dan Tracy mentioned a few other things. The will be a toy drive on Saturday, Dec. 12 at O’Donnell Square. The Highlandtown Exchange Club (a nonprofit community service organization) is selling chances for a Taste of our Community at $5.00 each. The train garden at the engine house (520 S. Conkling Street) started November 28. There are also brochures about dining and shopping in Highlandtown.
Denise Aversa, CCA Secretary, mentioned Baltimore Link which will involve renaming existing Mass Transit Administration (MTA) modes with changes to be made. This will be a big deal and people are urged to be aware of it. Brochures were made available. The link is: http://mta.maryland.gov/BaltimoreLink.
Sergeant Jeffrey Featherstone - Community Collaboration Division:
The Sergeant spoke about the area. He feels that Canton is fantastic and sees it as “thriving”. He gave a report on four stolen autos, two commercial robberies, one street robbery, nine larcenies from cars and 16 burglaries from the home for the last thirty days. Some of this happened because of open windows and doors. He warned people to be more mindful.
He advised that if something is on Facebook, he can be contacted at 410-396-2422
443-695-9983 to verify it. Or Sean can be contacted. His job is to find out if something did indeed happen.
There were a few questions about patrols around Patterson Park. There are park rangers helping in that area.
The district is back to posts again which means one policeman for the park along with plainclothes police. He can get us information about COP walks in Patterson Park. As far as foot patrols, he said that gets complicated for a big area. Sergeant Jeffrey Featherstone - Community Collaboration Division
Sean brought up nuisances and complaints in the 1100 block S. Curley Street. When someone asked about people driving away from the Square appearing to be drunk, he said to please get the tag number, a good description of the person and the direction they are heading.
As for texting and driving, that is sometimes up to the officer’s discretion and depends on the officer’s time. It was brought up about people running stop signs, and texting while driving in the area of Hampstead Hill Academy (500 block S. Linwood Avenue).
CCA – Marketing Survey:
Doug Kaufman, Vice President, and Valerie Kent, Board member, spoke about the Marketing Committee. The process was started in April for a marketing audit. She said the CCA knows it needs to communicate better and to have a greater sense of community.
The website needs to be more user friendly. Doug asked for volunteers – writers, developers, public relations people and photographers.
Dan Tracy spoke on the new proposed Zoning Code along with maps. This has been a four year process after not having been changed for 40 years. This area is mainly residential. He wants to make this process known to residents and businesses. Copies of the report are available here tonight. Kate Edwards is our City Planner.
Dan asked if there were any questions. He said Councilman Jim Kraft welcomes feedback from the CCA. He said they are trying to get a list on social media. The final meeting is December 15.
Recs & Parks:
The Canton Waterfront park is undergoing changes with the disposition of property of the Department of Public Works (DPW). The Baltimore Police Marine Unit will be the only one left. The issue of what to do with remaining property is the question. The CCA sees this as the last chance for green space since there is a lot of new development in the future – Canton Crossing, Corporate Office Properties Trust (COPT), Merritt and the Kauffman Electric (3400 Boston Street) property.
This will be a lengthy process. Recs & Parks is pushing to have the ice rink from Patterson Park moved to the waterfront. This would impose a big impact on this area. It’s been suggested to have something for older children down there. Recs & Parks will bring feedback from the November meeting back to the CCA Board for another general meeting.
The meeting adjourned at 8:35PM.
Here are the candidates for this Canton community and surrounding areas---they raised tons of money because they are all connected to these global corporations and committed to ONE WORLD BLOOMBERG ECONOMIC ZONE 2 NORTH AMERICA----we see connections to Brian Frosh and other Montgomery County pols BFF with the FED and Wall Street---and most of them are far-right Wall Street Clinton neo-liberals RUNNING AS DEMOCRATS IN BALTIMORE.
FOLKS---THE REPUBLICAN PARTY IS WEALTH AND CORPORATE POWER---PLEASE GET OUT OF OUR PEOPLE'S DEMOCRATIC PARTY!
These will be those community association leaders all dying to build, subsidize, change zoning and permitting all for global corporate campuses and global factories. These 5% to the 1% better WAKE UP-----Wall Street players do not make it to the global 2%.
I have spoken about Zeke Cohen and his ties to Teach for America and global corporate neo-liberal education and Matthew McDaniel looks to be that global corporate lawyer. WE THE PEOPLE must look closely and think what a ONE WORLD GLOBAL CORPORATE RULE CITY STATE would want for its government---they would want global lawyers----global executives----global defense industry----and global Wall Street----and that is what we are getting much of in these election races tied to our newly gentrified communities in Baltimore----------------------------------SHAKE IT UP----STOP THE FARM TEAM GLOBAL WALL STREET -------
As an attorney representing local businesses, I have seen firsthand the difficulty job creators are having in Baltimore. Residents of the First District aren’t interested in seeing another politician or bureaucrat representing them at City Hall. Rather, people in our area are looking for someone who is outside of the political structure that has so mismanaged Baltimore’s affairs for decades.
As a teacher in West Baltimore I realized that our youth are never challenged to lead. Young voices are absent from the civic conversation. So I started a non profit where I teach leadership to high-schoolers. My students have passed two state laws, spoken in India and at the White House. Kids that were written off are now thriving in college. I am an educator, entrepreneur, and problem solver.
'the difficulties job creators have' is always tied to more deregulation more tax free and subsidy, more zoning and permitting for those 'businesses'. The difficulties job creators have had in Baltimore is a Master Plan by Wall Street Baltimore Development deliberately keeping our local economy stagnant, misappropriating all Baltimore's revenue to a few global corporations----it had nothing to do with regulations and taxes.
REALLY FOLKS----MORE IVY LEAGUE LAWYERS. I would ask citizens to look at the 21st century military to see whether these candidates are global corporate defense because IT MATTERS---that's what I have seen with this 'progressive' veterans' organization
'Another top money-getter is Scott Goldman, 34, an Army officer and attorney who lives in Fells Prospect with his wife and young son. A Harvard graduate who earned a Bronze Star in Afghanistan, he is endorsed by the progressive veterans organization VoteVets.org'.
These will be those community association leaders all dying to build, subsidize, change zoning and permitting all for global corporate campuses and global factories. These 5% to the 1% better WAKE UP-----Wall Street players do not make it to the global 2%.
A big-money, two-party race for City Council heats up in Southeast Baltimore
Left to right, the nine candidates running for the Baltimore City Council's 1st District seat: Zeke Cohen (D), Liz Copeland (R), Scott Goldman (D), Jennifer Susan Dudley (R), Mark Edelson (D), Sean Flanagan (D), Ed Marcinko (D), Matt McDaniel (R) and Mark Parker (D).
(The Baltimore Sun)
Luke BroadwaterContact Reporter
The Baltimore Sun
Democrats are raising a ton of money in Baltimore's 1st District, where a Republican could win.In Southeast Baltimore, there's a big-money City Council race going on that folks are calling a "street fight."
Three Democratic candidates have raised more than $100,000 — enough to rival the fundraising of some campaigns for mayor. Republicans believe the winner of the April 26 primary has a legitimate shot in November's general election for the first time since the 1940s.
It's a power struggle to succeed Councilman James B. Kraft, who is leaving the seat after 12 years to seek a judgeship. With nine candidates running, neighbors in the bustling district that includes Little Italy, Fells Point, Canton and Highlandtown say it is not uncommon for multiple campaigns to knock on their door on the same day.
"We're all working hard," said Zeke Cohen, an educator who was the first candidate to emerge about a year ago and has $103,000 on hand. "It's a street fight. It's a grind."
Mileah Kromer, director of the Sarah T. Hughes Field Politics Center at Goucher College, said money is pouring into the council race in part because the district is an economic center of Baltimore — with more businesses and individuals with higher income than some districts.
Roughly Speaking podcast: 1st District City Council candidates (episode 82)
The candidate who emerges from such a competitive race, she said, could become a rising political star.
"A lot of people who run for City Council and win end up running for state legislature, Congress or even mayor," Kromer said. "These donors have a vested interest in using the City Council as a training ground."
The race will also test just how conservative Southeast Baltimore has become. In the 2014 gubernatorial race, 1st District voters chose Republican Larry Hogan over Democrat Anthony G. Brown by 53 percent to 47 percent, signaling that the area is in play for both parties.
"Is there a real Republican wave in the district or was it just a Larry Hogan anomaly?" Kromer asked. "This is a real test of Hogan's coattails."
The three Republicans in the race had raised little money as of the last reporting deadline in January. Joe Cluster, executive director of the Maryland GOP, says the party will offer support once the primary is over.
The Democrats "all have a lot of money," he said, "but they're going to spend a lot of it in the primary."
"Whoever our nominee is, we plan on introducing them to the big donors around the state. We have very few competitive races this year. This is one of them, and the party will put effort into it."
Registered Democrats outnumber Republicans in the district, as in the rest of the city. Even as they were helping to elect Hogan two years ago, District 1 voters chose Democrats Brian E. Frosh for Maryland attorney general and Peter Franchot for comptroller.
Six Democrats are seeking the council seat.
Cohen, 30, of Canton, is director of The Intersection, a nonprofit that helps Baltimore high school students prepare for college.
He says he plans to press the city to increase access to prekindergarten, expand the youth summer jobs program, reduce fees on small businesses and increase community walks with the police.
Part of his campaign money — $7,600 — has come from Leadership for Educational Equity political action committees, the political wing of Teach for America. He is an alumnus of the program, which places recent college graduates at schools in poor communities.
Another top money-getter is Scott Goldman, 34, an Army officer and attorney who lives in Fells Prospect with his wife and young son. A Harvard graduate who earned a Bronze Star in Afghanistan, he is endorsed by the progressive veterans organization VoteVets.org.
If elected, he says, he will work to make neighborhoods safer, schools stronger and development smarter, using property tax reform. He has $109,000 on hand, with many top donations from out of state.
Attorney Mark Edelson, 31, of Canton has raised more than $100,000. He says 85 percent of his donations are from Baltimore or its surrounding counties. He received $2,000 from the Beatty Development Group, which is building the more than $1 billion Harbor Point project in the district.
The South African immigrant says his platform includes the creation of "transit hubs," where residents can choose from Zipcars, buses, bike shares and water taxis. He wants to streamline city permitting, increase staff in the inspector general's office and reduce property taxes.
Lutheran pastor Mark Parker, 32, has raised $32,000. The Highlandtown resident says the city needs new leadership after the unrest that followed the death of Freddie Gray, a 25-year-old black man who died in April after suffering a spinal injury in police custody.
With at least six City Council seats turning over this year, Parker said the time is ripe to transform city government. He wants to expand recreation and mentoring for youth, improve parks and improve transportation options. He also wants Baltimore Public Schools CEO Gregory Thornton to communicate better with the community.
"The stakes are pretty high for the future direction of our city," said Parker, who is married with two children. A Spanish speaker, he has been endorsed by CASA in Action, an organization that supports immigrants.
Retired DEA agent Ed Marcinko, 56, of Upper Fells Point, who has raised $16,000, says he stands out from the other candidates because he does not have another job.
"The other candidates, they're lawyers, administrators and ministers," he said. "We need a full-time council person."
If elected, he says, he would support small businesses and advocate for constituents. He says he is the only candidate in the race to sign a pledge to fight planned zoning changes in Fells Point that would allow taller buildings.
"I've been a public servant all my life," Marcinko said. "My parents helped save Fells Point from the highway. I've been a community activist for close to 20 years."
Sean Flanagan, 44, a former president of the Canton Community Association, calls the amount of money being raised by his competitors "excessive."
"I hate to see that kind of money raised for a primary race for a council," he said. "That said, they all recognize this is a going to be a competitive race."
Flanagan opposed the Red Line light rail project, helped raise about $130,000 for the Canton branch of the Enoch Pratt Free Library and helped bring radio station WTMD's "First Thursdays" concerts to Canton.
Flanagan says he is the candidate best positioned to balance development and neighborhood interests.
"Patterson Park is the new waterfront of the 1st District," he said. "We've got incredible things happening. But what are the impacts to the neighborhoods?"
Baltimore has not elected a Republican to office since 1963, when Theodore R. McKeldin was elected mayor. Daniel Ellison, the last Republican to serve on the Baltimore City Council, left office in 1942.
That record has not stopped the three Republicans in the race, who have a combined $5,000 on hand.
Liz Copeland, 38, an administrator for the Department of Social Services, says the election offers a chance to make history.
The Canton resident wants to "hold criminals accountable," reduce taxes and fees, and promote school choice.
The former Democrat was a member of the liquor board, which was criticized heavily by state auditors in 2013. She says that the agency was hampered by politics and that she tried hard to hold bars accountable. Copeland said she decided to become a Republican as she watched the Democratic Party become more liberal.
"I was always a conservative Democrat, but in the last eight years, I've become more and more concerned about government's inability to show fiscal restraint," she said.
She said the 1st District is "an area where people put party affiliations aside and choose candidates based on the individual."
Her main rival in the GOP primary is lawyer Matthew McDaniel, 27, a Canton resident who says he sees a sea change taking place in Southeast Baltimore.
"If there's a place in the city that is a breakthrough area, it's this district," he said. "If you look at Dundalk, the whole district switched to Republican."
If elected, McDaniel pledges to build "strong working relationships" with police and help local businesses "stay open and prosperous."
He says his message can appeal to both Republicans and Democrats.
"I'm running against corruption and for transparency and audits," he said. "We need to make the city more affordable for people. Everybody wants lower property taxes, better trash collection and safer streets."
Jennifer Susan Dudley, 50, a school guidance counselor who lives in Bayview, describes herself as a "moderate Republican."
She says her top priority would be increasing the police presence in the community.
I shout often against Trans Pacific Trade Pact because it will be used to make legitimate the goals of US cities deemed Foreign Economic Zones to operate as global International Economic Zones do free from US national, state, and local laws and US Constitutional constraints. This is what Baltimore has done for these few decades without putting it to law or public voice---they JUST DO IT. Here is the policy MOVING FORWARD ONE WORLD and we see it taking California from #1 ranking in the world across all quality of life and human rights social progressive to being the worst in the world in all these same measures. This was the Reagan/Schwarzneggar as far-right governors and is why CA is a decade or so ahead of other US cities. We see San Diego, LA, San Fran, Sacramento all tied to being CHARTER CITIES.
Here we see the global Wall Street neo-liberal think tank Brookings Institute calling this the METROPOLITAN POLICY PROGRAM.......CHARTER RULE. It is simply yet another tool for installing ONE WORLD ONE GOVERNANCE BY GLOBAL CORPORATE RULE. We see voters installed these charter rule policies---know what? Baltimore citizens have not had a voice on these charter amendments because we never are told what they mean----they simply say THIS WILL HELP THE POOR AND CREATE JOBS AND AFFORDABLE HOUSING.
WE KNOW THE WALL STREET PLAYERS IN OUR US CITIES TODAY---LIKE BALTIMORE ---WILL BE MOVING FORWARD BY SUGGESTING WE NEED CHARTER RULE NOW THAT GLOBAL CORPORATIONS ARE GAINING CONTROL OF OUR CITY.
'There is a great body of existing research looking into the implications of Dillon's Rule, home rule, and charters, as well as numerous listings of states with home rule and those with Dillon's Rule. The Brookings Metropolitan Policy Program has detailed research on Dillon's Rule, including a listing of which states employ it. The National League of Cities has a City 101 Guide that includes an explainer of local government authority'.
It's Complicated: State and Local Government Relationships
by Alisha Green
Understanding how governments function and interact with each other is essential to understanding where and how transparency reforms will make a difference. When we look at local governments, we have to consider not only how that government is structured, but also how it operates in relation to the state structures that surround it.
We use cities as an example in this post for the sake of consistency and clarity, but these different relationships can apply across the spectrum of municipal governments and municipal government structures.
There are two basic types of interaction between cities and states:
- A general law city has a structure largely shaped by a state's law or constitution. The municipality can adopt local ordinances setting rules for its residents, but only within the range allowed by state law. This format can also be shaped by Dillon's Rule, which essentially means that local governments only have the powers granted to them by the state. There is debate about the challenges and benefits of this system. Some local governments feel the rule restricts them when they try to deal with evolving issues such as a growing population with changing needs. A general law city would have to seek power from the state to deal with new problems if that authority hasn't already been explicitly granted, and that's where this system can be seen as a constraint.
- A charter city or home rule city functions more autonomously from state laws and regulations. These cities have a charter establishing how government will be structured, what its duties are, and what local ordinances will be. The process for creating a charter or revising an existing charter varies from state to state. Any municipality with a charter is still subject to state laws, however. It might have more authority to deal with local issues, but any laws it sets are subject to the state law and constitution. Even in the places that have home rule, they might sometimes feel more like a general law city if the state is aggressive with the amount of legislation it passes impacting local policies and authority.
It's important to keep in mind that there's no clear line between the ways municipalities and their state interact. There are many ways the philosophies of general law, Dillon's Rule, charters, and home rule overlap. A city can have home rule but be in a state that applies Dillon's Rule, for example. This is the case in Michigan: the state's constitution gives local governments the power to adopt charters and have home rule, but it also employs Dillon's Rule by setting some guidelines for how municipalities operate.
The only one real commonality between general law and home rule structures is that there is always some degree of state control to which a municipality is subject and some degree of autonomy invested in a local body. That variability, and the state-to-state differences in relations with local government, is where there's an added layer of complexity for transparency.
How a state and local government interact can impact everything from how finances are handled to how public utility decisions are made. We'll be continuing to explore these as we work toward crafting meaningful transparency recommendations.
There is a great body of existing research looking into the implications of Dillon's Rule, home rule, and charters, as well as numerous listings of states with home rule and those with Dillon's Rule. The Brookings Metropolitan Policy Program has detailed research on Dillon's Rule, including a listing of which states employ it. The National League of Cities has a City 101 Guide that includes an explainer of local government authority.
The US and its cities will be called those struggling countries after this coming economic crash from US Treasury and state municipal bond fraud.
HOME RULE is not local when our US cities are captured by global Wall Street and Foreign Economic Zone structures.
How in the world did the US under FDR social Democratic policy become the world's economic engine with strong employment strong wages, strong corporate profits for much of this CENTURY all under Federal regulations, taxation, strong public sector----HOW DID WE DO THAT ----CERTAINLY NOT BY ONE WORLD POLICIES.
Where do all our rights as citizens, public justice, constitutional rights lie? In our Federal and state constitutions.
Should Struggling Countries Let Investors Run Their Cities?
Honduras contemplates creating a first-world oasis in the middle of its weak economy.
Women scuffle with a soldier during a protest near the National Congress in Tegucigalpa January 25, 2013. (Jorge Cabrera/Reuters)Last month, the Honduran Congress approved the creation of independent commercial cities called Employment and Economic Development zones (or "ZEDE" for their Spanish acronym). Supporters of the ZEDEs, including Honduran President Porfirio Lobo Sosa, hope they will offer an alternative to the corruption and governance challenges that hamstring Honduras's economy. They believe that replacing parts of Honduras's ineffective regulations with new rules and institutions overseen by international experts will stimulate much-needed competition, economic growth, and foreign investment.
Striving to create sort of a Hong Kong on the Caribbean is controversial, however, and detractors fear that the ZEDEs will fail, undermine the country's already weak institutions, and also hurt the land rights of marginalized indigenous groups.
Honduras is one of the poorest and most insecure countries in Latin America: an estimated 60 percent of the population lives below the poverty line, and it has the highest per-capita homicide rate in the world, according to the UN. Income inequality, broken institutions and corruption are the norm. Honduras also suffers from political instability and a culture of impunity, which were reinforced by a recent military coup. Past reform efforts have failed in large part because of opposition from a small group of entrenched elite families that control key state institutions and entire sectors of the economy.
Against this backdrop, the government has sought out new approaches to tackling Honduras' problems. It started to explore the concept of charter cities in 2009 after the president's chief of staff viewed a TED talk by the famous economist Paul Romer on the subject.
According to Romer, autonomous economic zones attract investment, create jobs, and promote economic activity. (e.g. the U.K. or Canada) instead of the often-corrupt local institutions. A zone's adoption of another country's regulatory regime provides the stability, predictability, and transparency that businesses seek out. It also allows the host nation to experiment with new (and hopefully superior) regulatory regimes before deploying them throughout its territory.
Romer rejects the notion that such zones are neocolonial because they do not rely upon two key underpinnings of colonialism -- coercion and condescension.
Local leaders remain sovereign. They elect to invite another country to assist with the administration of the zone, specify the scope of authority ceded to the other country, and determine how that country is to be compensated. Romer cites Mauritius's decision to use the Privy Council -- the U.K.'s highest court -- as the court of final appeal in Mauritius as a successful example of outsourcing certain administrative procedures to other countries. The arrangement promotes investment in Mauritius by giving investors confidence that any disputes related to their investments will be resolved fairly by the experienced and neutral Privy Council as opposed to less-respected local courts.
The Lobo Administration seized upon this concept as a potential answer to Honduras' economic and political woes, and it has worked over the past three years to build such zones on Honduran territory. In early 2011, the Congress passed a law allowing for the creation of ZEDEs, which was subsequently struck down as unconstitutional by the Supreme Court.
A new law was drafted to address the concerns of the Supreme Court and included a series of constitutional amendments to allow for the creation of such zones and the grant of autonomous judicial power to them. That law was approved on June 12 and Honduras is now moving forward with the establishment of the first of 12 planned ZEDEs. Local residents are scheduled to vote on them in November 2013.
According to Shanker Singham, an international trade and competition expert advising interested parties on this initiative, the ZEDEs are inspired by Romer's ideas but add significantly to them. Honduras is focused on how an autonomous regulatory regime can unleash the forces of competition and generate substantial wealth creation.
The structure of the ZEDEs ensures that Honduras itself--not only outside investors--derives maximum benefit from them. As investors and businesses begin to locate their activities in a ZEDE, its land becomes more valuable (just as it did in Singapore, as that small nation became a hub of economic activity), which generates wealth for landowners, including the local government, investors, and so on.
Similarly, the economic activity within the ZEDE generates profits in the form of taxes, concession fees, and equity stakes in new ventures. The government receives a sizeable share of this money. Honduras would also benefit from the new jobs created in and around the zone through existing international businesses that relocate there and from new businesses that form there. Economic growth is possible because the vested interests that traditionally benefit from lack of competition (and oppose reform efforts) do not exist in these as-of-yet undeveloped areas. After all, no powerful family would have had any reason to use its money and influence to obtain, for example, a monopoly in a barren part of the country devoid of commercial activity.
Under this vision, each ZEDE would be governed by a board that would have authority to establish the zone's regulatory system (which is independent from Honduras' existing laws). The Board would be comprised of elements of the host government and investors, as opposed to an outside government. The board delegates the day-to-day management of the zone to the administrator -- an outside technocrat -- who is given authority to oversee an investor-friendly environment. The administrator also works with a developer on the physical development of the zone's land (a goal of the ZEDEs is to promote construction on previously unused land). The recent constitutional amendments help ensure the regulatory autonomy of the zone and the government's commitment not to intervene in its affairs.
The broad contours of the concept have historical precedent. There are several well-known examples of successful zones, including the City of London, Hong Kong, Dubai, and the Bahamas. In the City of London, there is a board comprised of aldermen and the Lord Mayor; the aldermen are chosen via direct election by both individuals and businesses that operate in the City, and the City has long had rights and privileges that distinguished it from the rest of England, such as the ability to regulate its banks independently and keep its markets open seven days a week, instead of the much more limited hours of other markets in the country.
In Hong Kong, which followed a different path to "one-country, two-systems," there is a legislative council whose members are chosen by a small group of HK citizens who are themselves elected to represent various professional and other organizations. In the Bahamas, a private entity (the Grand Bahamas Port Authority) acts as both developer and regulator under an agreement with the Government of the Bahamas. There are a host of special economic zones in China and elsewhere that are also designed to stimulate investment and business growth. For these reasons, several countries are currently working to establish ZEDE-like areas, including Morocco and Georgia.
Not everyone in Honduras supports the creation of ZEDEs, however. Some lawyers, activists, and other opponents stress that ZEDEs are an affront to Honduran sovereignty. They even argue that the creation of separate judicial systems jeopardizes rights enshrined on the Honduran Constitution. Indeed, weak institutions may enable the ZEDEs to be captured by corporate interests that take advantage of Honduras instead of growing its economy. They also fear that the limited land rights of indigenous Garifuna groups will be further threatened.
Even if these criticisms prove to have merit, ZEDEs may be a smart move for Honduras. It may very well be easier to solve the country's systemic governance challenges -- which drive its poor economic outlook and dire public security situation -- by starting afresh, even within small parts of its territory.
The new regulatory systems in the ZEDEs could set an example for the rest of the country to emulate. Starting with ZEDEs in small, undeveloped parts of Honduras allows for the fine-tuning of their rules (which are new to the country) and avoids confronting entrenched interests (i.e. the handful of families with a stranglehold on Honduras's economy) that blocked previous reform efforts. That way, the success of the ZEDEs could be proved before potentially expanding them to larger swaths of Honduran territory.
Only time will tell if ZEDEs help Honduras tackle the myriad challenges facing its weak state or further undermine its tenuous stability. Creating a new Hong Kong or Dubai on the Caribbean may be difficult, but even incremental success could catalyze much-needed economic growth and improvements to the rule of law in Honduras, not to mention set an example for other developing countries to follow.