The Howard County Council is a five-member legislative body that serves four-year terms and is elected from five different districts. The Columbia Association, a private, nonprofit corporation, acts as a local government, recreational company, and civic organization all rolled into one. Its board of directors is elected by the owners and residents of Columbia's 10 villages. The Howard County Delegation to the Maryland General Assembly is chaired by Senator Clarence Lam and Delegate Jessica Feldmark.
The Council's primary responsibility is to pass Howard County laws which ensure that our community remains vibrant and strong. They amend zoning rules and approve the County's Comprehensive Zoning Plan which is guided by the Howard Plan 2030, the County's General Plan. The Howard County Government also manages a school system, a police department with nearly 500 sworn officers, a fire department, a water and sewer system, a landfill, and six branch libraries with the highest per capita circulation rate in the state. The Howard County Delegation of the Maryland General Assembly holds working sessions open to the public and public hearings for citizens to weigh in on local bills and state issues.
Every ten years after each census, Congress realigns congressional districts, the state legislature realigns legislative districts, and the Howard County Council realigns council districts after considering advice from a seven-member redeployment committee. Details on future public hearings and delegation meetings are posted on their page as they are scheduled. Typically, all meetings are held in the Banneker Room, located on the first floor of the George Howard Building, 3430 Court House Drive, Ellicott City, MD 21043. The dates and agendas of the hearings are also announced in the Sunpapers and the Howard County Times, and are posted on the bulletin board outside the Council offices. In addition to their legislative duties, Council members also serve on the local Board of Licensing Commissioners, known as the Liquor Licensing Board.
A person who has been elected a member of the Council three times or who has been elected twice and has held a vacancy where he has held office for more than two years cannot be re-elected. Newly elected Council members take office on the first Monday of December of the year of their election. If you would like to contact Howard County Delegation legislators directly, your information appears below in the Delegation Members section. My family and I love living here for many reasons but mainly because Howard County's sense of community is something that should be inspired around the country.
The Howard County Council is located on the first floor of the George Howard Building, 3430 Court House Drive, Ellicott City, MD 21043. He previously served as second vice president of the Howard County Democratic Central Committee and as Howard County Human Rights Commissioner appointed by then-county executive Ken Ulman.