Harford County Council Lets Proposed Zoning Appeal Charter Amendment Expire

As previously reported on Conduit Street, the Harford County Council has been considering a proposed charter amendment that would remove the Council from hearing zoning appeals cases.  The amendment was proposed to address concerns about council members not being able to discuss zoning issues with constituents because of their role as a zoning appeals board.  However, a number of Harford residents testified against the amendment at a recent public hearing.  A June 18 Baltimore Sun article reported that the amendment is now dead as council members did not take it up for a vote at their last meeting and the council will not reconvene until after the deadline to vote on the amendment has passed.  From the article:

The Harford County Council seemed to bow to public outcry Tuesday night, failing to act on a charter amendment that would have removed the council as the zoning appeals board. …

Councilman Dick Slutzky, the amendment’s main defender, declined to comment after Tuesday’s meeting.

After a public hearing earlier this month drew more than a dozen residents complaining about the amendment, Slutzky said he would be willing to reconsider his stance.  …

Bill Wehland, one of the opponents of the charter amendment, said after the meeting he was surprised the vote did not come up.  …

Councilman Dion Guthrie, another major supporter of removing the council as zoning board, said later that night he plans to talk with residents about zoning issues and “let the chips fall where they may.”  …

Guthrie said the council felt obligated to let the amendment die, after the outcry at the public hearing.

 

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