The Conduit Street blog is generated by the Maryland Association of Counties (MACo).
MACo is a non-profit and non-partisan organization that serves Maryland’s counties by articulating the needs of local government to the Maryland General Assembly. The Association’s membership consists of county elected officials and representatives from Maryland’s 23 counties and Baltimore City. MACo’s members determine Association policy and positions on executive and legislative proposals through an elected Board of Directors and a volunteer Legislative Committee. Through MACo’s advocacy, training, education programs, and annual conferences, members are provided with endless opportunities to improve their capacity to serve their residents.
Ten organizations representing professional county government staffs are affiliated with MACo. These affiliates work to enhance their members’ effectiveness, and assist the Association in formulating its legislative agenda and in structuring conference presentations.
MACo is the only organization serving the needs of county elected officials and governments across the state. MACo’s main office is located in downtown Annapolis.
Legislative and Intergovernmental Relations
MACo provides a single unified voice for county governments throughout the state. The Association advocates for county positions before the General Assembly, the Governor and executive branch officials, and federal decision-makers.
Each county has representation on the MACo Legislative Committee, the cornerstone of the Association’s advocacy efforts. The Committee meets weekly during the General Assembly Session to determine the Association’s positions on legislative issues and intergovernmental relations which have an impact on county governments.
During the interim, the Committee plans MACo’s legislative initiatives for the upcoming Session. The Committee, in conjunction with MACo staff, research and track all proposed legislation affecting county governments in Maryland.
Education and Training
MACo hosts three annual conferences that offer continuing education for county elected officials and representatives of Maryland’s 23 counties and Baltimore City. The goal of the Conferences is to provide county decision-makers and other participants with a clearer perspective on the challenges facing counties, and most importantly, to provide strategies for addressing these challenges. Designated sessions at the conferences qualify for credit with the Academy for Excellence in Local Governance.
- The Winter Conference is a 3-day event and is held in January. It draws nearly 500 county and state elected and appointed officials. Educational Session topics focus on reviewing timely issues that will be relevant during the upcoming Maryland General Assembly Session.
- The Summer Conference is held mid-August in Ocean City and centers around networking with county and state officials, and connecting with businesses who have a stake in county government activities or services.
- The Administrators & Attorneys Fall Conference provides a forum for discussion of legal and management issues for county administrators and attorneys.
Information and Research
MACo disseminates information through the Association’s website, the Conduit Street blog, Twitter, events and meetings, legislative reports and white papers, and publications. Must-read publications include the MACo Directory of County Officials, and the e-Newsletter, Courthouse News. MACo staff offers technical assistance, research, and support to county members. The Association serves as a clearinghouse for issues pertaining to Maryland county government.
MACo is located in downtown Annapolis at 169 Conduit Street. The phone number is 410.269.0043 or 301. 261.1140. The fax is 410. 268.1775.