Business owners in the historic waterfront Baltimore neighborhood of Fells Point sent a scathing letter to the city’s Democrat leadership, threatening to withhold taxes unless the elected leaders “empower police” to do their jobs in response to a crime wave resulting from the left-wing’s “defund the police” agenda.
“What is happening in our front yard — the chaos and lawlessness that escalated this weekend into another night of tragic, unspeakable gun violence — has been going on for far too long,” the 37 restaurant and store owners wrote in their letter on Tuesday, according to a report by the Western Journal.
“We have struggled through a global pandemic, enduring restaurant shutdowns and mask mandates,” the group continued. “For months, we have been holding on by a thread, waiting for daybreak, worrying whether we will make it or if we will be the next business to shutter our doors for good.
“But we have reached our breaking point,” the business owners said. “Our elected leaders have closed their eyes and ears and turned their backs on our community for long enough. We are fed up and frustrated, and we now realize that nothing will change unless we demand action.”
Therefore, the group is demanding that lawmakers “ask police to do their job, stop illegal alcohol and drug sales on the streets, enforce basic traffic and parking laws, and pick up the trash.”
“Frankly, it is pathetic that we have to beg for these basics. But this is where we are,” they added.
And in order “to compel our leaders to do their job,” the business owners added that they will “withhold our city taxes and minor privilege and permit fees and place those funds into an escrow account, which we will not release until and unless basic and essential municipal services are restored.”
“Bottom line: Please do your job so we can get back to doing ours,” the letter concluded.
Much of Baltimore — which has been run by Democrat mayors since 1967 — has been crime-infested for decades, reports The Western Journal, adding that the violence has increased over the past year, amid the left-wing’s demonization of law enforcement.
“Mayor Scott shares the business owners’ frustrations over the violence across the city, and has ordered the Baltimore Police Department, Department of Public Works, and Department of Transportation to work collaboratively to address it,” said the mayor’s office in a statement, according to a report by WMAR-TV.
“The Mayor is working tirelessly to hold people committing violence accountable, remove violent offenders from our streets, and identify illegal firearm traffickers so Baltimore residents can enjoy a night out without fear of endangerment,” the statement added.
The statement did not address the business owners’ warning that they will withhold taxes if they don’t see improvement.