Inside City Hall: Armed guards at city pools nixed for now

It was one of those amazing expenditures that seems to whiz through the Board of Estimates every Wednesday – a Department of Recreation and Parks request today to spend $171,000 to hire armed guards to provide security at city pools this summer.

Amazing, quite literally, because the guards would come from Amazing Security & Investigations LLC, of College Park, which holds a service contract with Baltimore to provide security personnel.

Rec and Parks said it needed the guards at city pools between May 25 and September 3, while – at the very same time – the agency’s pool funds would be slashed by $105,769 under Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake’s 2013 budget.

(Under the proposed budget, six of seven neighborhood wading and splash pools will be closed this summer, while six park pools and 13 walk-to pools would remain open.)

Proposed expenditures by city agencies spend weeks winding their way through high-level bureaucratic approvals and political vetting before they are submitted to the board.

Rec and Parks, however, withdrew the armed guard request shortly before the start of today’s meeting and has gone back to the drawing board to determine its aquatic security arrangements. A red flag was raised by someone.

“The department is continuing to evaluate the plan. A final decision has not been made,” spokeswoman Gwendolyn Chambers said late today.

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  • Mair

    Does anyone in City government have a grasp on reality?

  • Shereese Maynard

    They took it back because they forgot to use the secret code “clusterf_ckthecitizens.” These people are disgusting but they learned from a pro. Owe-Malley would be proud

  • Unellu

    Subliminally the rulers are terrified of the unruly ruled creating havoc.  Armed guards!  The Parks and Recs department sounds Putinesque.  If blood flows in one of the pools and there is literally a blood bath then they can shut down all the pools without compunction.  Case closed!

  • p johnson

    Don’t use that money one rent a cops, spend it on some more BCPD officers. Then smartly deploy an office (or two) at any pools that have problems…..Oh wait that probably wouldn’t help get $$$ to some politically connected business.

  • Mair

    Considering the size of the police department, and then throw in the sheriff’s department – why is there a need to contract with a ‘security agency’?

  • Ktrueheart

    Another reason to CUT the over-inflated Baltimore City Police Department budget … Whose mission appears to lock-up/incarcerate our children, NOT protect them!

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