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Govt for the Many, or the Few? Speak Up by Monday, April 15th, or it will be the Few.

Updated: Apr 10

In the great Star Trek movie "The Wrath of Khan," Spock gives up his life to save the crew of the Enterprise because "the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or the one."

Right now, the Anne Arundel County Council is preparing to pass Bill 26-24 as "emergency legislation" that will privilege the needs of the few over the needs of the rest of us. The bill would reduce from 14 days to just 7 days the period during which a property owner must notify neighbors of a zoning change they are requesting.

Realistically, 7 days is not enough time for citizens to notice and read the posted signs, research the implications of the proposed zoning change, coordinate with neighbors, and contact their Council rep.

GAN pressed for a 30 day notice period, but agreed to the compromise 14 day period with the understanding it would not be shortened.

We, the Growth Action Network (GAN), believe this is important because the Council has already received dozens of requests to change zoning from just 25% of the county, with many more to come over the next two years. And in most cases, these requests are bypassing the review by the citizen Stakeholder Advisory Committees at work on these very matters for the past 18 months, and reviews by the Office of Planning and Zoning, and the Planning Advisory Board.

Many Councilmembers says that too many requests came in too late to honor the 14 day period. The Council could decide to hold the rezoning bills until the fall, but they would rather ram this through, privileging their donors and other latecomers at the expense of the rest of the community.

This is government of the few, for the few, at the expense of the many.

GAN urges you to contact all Council members and request that the 14 day notification period be retained. Submit written testimony opposing bill 26-24 at and consider attending the Council meeting on April 15th to testify in person.

Realistically, the bill will probably pass. But the Council should hear loud and clear that we are watching and paying attention, and that their votes on this bill show us where they stand -- for the many, or just the few.


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