Baltimore housing officials issued a fresh $500 citation and code violation notice against Democratic Mayor Catherine Pugh, faulting her for a new roof on her Ashburton home that doesn’t meet historic preservation standards.
A housing code violation issued Monday orders Pugh to remove any work done without permits by May 2 or face criminal penalties of up to $500 per day. A $500 citation also was issued Monday, city records show.
Tammy Hawley, a spokeswoman for the housing department, said the investigation started after the Baltimore Brew news site reported April 2 on the updated roof. The issue arose because the house is in a neighborhood regulated by the city’s Commission on Historic and Architectural Preservation.
“The slate shingles were replaced with regular shingles, and that would not be in compliance with CHAP district requirements,” Hawley said.
Steven Silverman, Pugh’s attorney, did not respond Tuesday to a request for comment about the citation.
The citation is a new problem for the house, which Pugh bought in late 2016, shortly after she became mayor.
In 2017, the housing department issued fines to a contractor for work done without proper permits on the home in the 3400 block of Ellamont Road. The penalties ultimately escalated to $2,500. Those issues went unaddressed for almost two years, even though the city’s top housing official presented Pugh with a memo outlining the problems.
Hawley said a $1,500 penalty connected with the first citation has now been paid. She didn’t know the status of the additional $1,000, which was in the form of a permit surcharge.
The memo outlined several steps Pugh needed to take to bring the house into compliance with city historic preservation rules.
On April 15, the housing department received an application for a permit to perform plumbing, heating and electrical work on the house. The application seeks to extend a permit for the same work issued in 2017.
In the new case regarding the roof, officials issued the citation and a violation notice. The notice is to force Pugh to take action to remedy the permitting problems, Hawley said.
“You can’t just pay a citation and walk away,” she said.
Pugh has been on a leave of absence from her role as mayor since April 1 as she recovers from a bout of pneumonia.