Baltimore businesses threaten to withhold taxes amid violence

BALTIMORE — More than three dozen business owners in Fells Point are threatening to withhold tax and permit payments if Baltimore officials don’t restore “basic and essential municipal services.”

News outlets report that in a letter to officials including the mayor and council president, the group complains about illegal alcohol and drug sales, trash pickup, public drinking, parking enforcement and other problems.

The demands come days after three people were shot Sunday in the neighborhood known for its vibrant nightlife.

If the city doesn’t respond, business owners say they’ll withhold tax and permit payments and put them into an escrow account.

A spokesman says the mayor shares their frustrations and has ordered police, public works and transportation officials to address the issues.

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