At a Baltimore County Council meeting last month, Councilman Izzy Patoka questioned the aesthetics of a planned affordable housing apartment building, Red Maple Place, on Joppa Road in Towson.

Patoka, who questioned why they wouldn’t have an attractive building, said: “No disrespect to Glen Burnie, but do we want to be Glen Burnie? Do we want to look like Ritchie Highway?”

Anne Arundel County Council Chair Allison Pickard, who represents Glen Burnie, was not amused.

“I was shocked and angered,” Pickard said.

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“Glen Burnie is a fantastic place to live with a strong sense of community,” she told Patoka in an email. “If you have to throw shade to make yourself or (your) community feel big or better, you are doing it all wrong.”

Pickard invited Patoka to have lunch with her in Glen Burnie so she could show him around.

“The people who call Glen Burnie home don’t deserve your ugly comments about their community,” she told Patoka. “I expect better.”

Patoka said he immediately regretted dissing Glen Burnie and he apologized to Pickard.

“As soon as I said it, I wanted to pull the words back into my mouth,” Patoka said. “There’s really no excuse for it. I own it and I made a mistake and I apologized for it.”

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In an interview, Pickard said Glen Burnie is one of Anne Arundel County’s older communities, dating back to 1888.

“It was a stop along the rail line from Baltimore to Annapolis,” Pickard said.

She added: “Glen Burnie has seen a lot of change since it was first founded and it continues to reinvent itself.”

For example, the Glen Burnie Revitalization Implementation Task Force worked with consultants to come up with a 10-year plan in 2022 to reimagine the Glen Burnie Town Center.

“I’m hoping we’re on the edge of another renaissance for Glen Burnie,” Pickard said. “It’s a naturally occurring more affordable area and it certainly has been underinvested in.”

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As for Pickard’s offer to come have lunch sometime, Patoka said he might take her up on it.

“I would love to do that and I’ll continue to have a dialogue with Councilwoman Pickard on that,” Patoka said.

Correction: This story has been updated to correct the spelling of Allison Pickard’s surname.