Referendum History
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Court of Appeals refuses to hear final appeal on FIXHOCO zoning referendum.

The Court of Appeals MD's highest court court, issued an opinion on August 19, denying certiorari (the right to hear an appeal) and will NOT allow a final appeal of the lower court's decision by the Court of Special Appeal's opinion by Honorable Judges Peter B. Krauser, James A. Kenney III, and Alexander Wright, Jr. During oral arguments on August 4th, they seemed to understand the need to protect any referendum against arbitrary action and delays, yet they upheld the Howard County Board of Election's decision to not place FixHoCo's zoning referendum on the ballot this November. The referendum would allow the voters to decide whether to overturn a few parts of the County Council's 2013 Comprehensive Zoning bill (CB-32-2013) that thousands of citizens believe allowed overly dense development, and unsafe effects on natural resources, burdening taxpayers with infrastructure improvements not borne by developers. (continued on the right below)


Howard County board is too cozy with developers

As a new participant in Howard County's comprehensive zoning process last year certain things became increasingly evident over time ("Special appeals court strikes down Howard zoning referendum," Aug. 13): Read more online:

This is the proposed wording for the referendum on the Zoning Act. 


Should the following zoning decisions approved as part of the Howard County 2013 Comprehensive Zoning Plan (CB 32-2013) enacted Aug. 6, 2013, be kept from going into effect?

[  ] Yes
[  ] No

Rezonings to Much Higher Intensity Use:

Clarksville: 6166/6100/6070 Guilford Road; 12585 Clarksville Pike; Ellicott City: the majority of 5771 Waterloo Road (Shipley's Grant historic site);

Highland: 13306/13454 Clarksville Pike;

Fulton: 11595 Scaggsville Road (Maple Lawn South);

Elkridge: 7275, 7239, 7281, 7269,7223, 7283 Washington Blvd. (includes Rosa Bonheur cemetery and nearby properties.).


Savage: 8550/8554 Fair Street: Rezoning from"Business" to 10 houses per
net acre;

Carry-over of July 24, 2013 zoning for Normandy Shopping Center properties & 12540 Clarksville Pike into 2013 Zoning Plan.

Definition change: "farming" to include application of processed human- waste to land.

Limitation that cumulative "footprint" of "farming" structures (i.e., barns) on residentially zoned property with a house be "subordinate/incidental" to principal use.

Posted August 19, 2014


Court Refuses to Hear....

Pro bono attorneys, Susan Gray and Allen Dyer, non-partisan candidate for the Board of Education, spent countless hours, days, evenings, and week-ends, for many months, since last July, as did many volunteers, to protect referendum rights for Maryland voters. They are considering the options left available to protect referendum rights. Many politicians, candidates and other supporters have worked for our cause, to give the voters the right to Referendum, which is guaranteed by the Howard County Charter. "We are, of course, very disappointed that the Court of Appeals won't correct the lower court's ruling which thwarted the rights of citizens to petition by referendum. The Court of Special Appeals gave the local Board of Elections leeway to ambush by arbitrary action and delays, any referendum. Those were the court's own words. They recognized that the Board of Election's policies can ambush referenda, and then did nothing to stop it, and the Court of Appeals refuses to fix it." said Lisa Markovitz, FixHoCo Chair. Alan Schneider, FixHoCo Vice-Chair and Democratic candidate for County Council District 5, stated, "It is shocking that referendum rights are not strongly supported by the Board of Elections, County Officials, and lower court judges. It reinforces feelings expressed by many voters in Howard County; something is wrong and needs to be fixed. We need to hold elected officials accountable."

Submitted by Lisa Markovitz

Posted August 20, 2014

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© 2014 Citizens Working to Fix Howard County | PO Box 154 | Fulton MD 20759-0154 | (240) 389.3770

Linked websites and their data are for your convenience; they don't necessarily reflect the position or opinions of Citizens Working to Fix Howard County.