MACo: Oversight for Electric Fences Should Remain Local

On March 2, 2020, MACo Legislative Director Natasha Mehu testified with Bill Jorch, from Maryland Municipal League, to oppose HB 1216 (CF SB 883) – Business Regulation – Security Systems – Battery-Charged Fences. This bill would restrict local permitting authority and oversight over security fences.

From the MACo Testimony:

Counties understand battery-charged fences are intended to serve as security systems to safeguard property and to serve as a deterrent to theft. The fences deliver an electric shock to those who attempt to breach the fence and send a notification to the property owner who may then call the police. Despite providing these novel security functions, they are still fence structures which typically require permits to ensure that the fence design, size, scale and material, are built to county approved codes. These codes help protect sight lines and setback requirements, right of way and easement rights, along with other important location and community-based building matters. It’s important to maintain some level of oversight for the integrity of these  structures.

Follow MACo’s advocacy efforts during the 2020 legislative session on MACo’s Legislative Tracking Database.