Recommendations to Strike Balance between Municipalities and Counties
BALTIMORE- Secretary Audrey E. Scott, of the Maryland Department of Planning (MDP), briefed the Maryland House Environmental Matters Committee Tuesday regarding land annexations in the State, and announced the Department has released a report on State annexation matters and recommendations compiled from the Annexation Workgroup that convened in 2005.
Governor Robert L. Ehrlich, Jr. stated, "It is critical to identify appropriate land use for Marylanders. The recommendations in the Department of Planning Annexation Report seek to strike a balance between municipal and county positions while being responsive to the challenges of annexations in Maryland."
Secretary Scott briefed the members of the work group, stating, "We have concerns about annexations in Maryland, especially on the Eastern Shore. We need to recognize these problems so that we may provide technical support and expertise to help resolve them." Secretary Scott stated further, "The Annexation Report makes modest recommendations to increase the level of planning and communication in the annexation process. Rational annexations are important for successful planned growth. I am confident a more deliberate planning process, coupled with more dialogue between municipalities and their counties, will improve substantially planned growth for Maryland residents."
Secretary Scott chaired the Annexation Workgroup, which met April through September 2005 and included representatives from the Maryland Association of Counties (MACo), the Maryland Municipal League (MML), and a planning professor from the University of Maryland. The workgroup was charged with studying State annexation matters and making a final report of background and recommendations for those interested in addressing challenging annexation matters. This report and supporting information can be downloaded from the Maryland Department of Planning's website at http://www.mdp.state.md.us/annx.htm.