Town of Mount Airy, MD
Carroll County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
General powers. The Council shall have the power to pass all such ordinances not contrary to the Constitution and laws of the State of Maryland or this Charter as it may deem necessary for the good government of the Town; for the protection and preservation of the Town's property rights and privileges; for the preservation of peace and good order; for securing persons and property from violence, danger or destruction; and for the protection and promotion of the health, safety, comfort convenience, welfare and happiness of the residents of and visitors in the Town.
Specific powers. In addition to, but not in substitution of, the powers which have been, or may hereafter be, granted to it, the Council also shall have the following express ordinance-making powers:
Advertising. To provide for municipal advertising, for the printing and publication of statements of the receipts and expenditures of the municipality, and the publication and codification of all laws, ordinances, resolutions or regulations adopted by or affecting the municipality.
Aisles and doors. To regulate and prevent the obstruction of aisles in public halls, churches and places of amusement, and to regulate the construction and operation of the doors and means of egress therefrom.
Amusements. To provide, in the interest of the public welfare, for licensing, regulating or restraining theatrical or other public amusements.[1]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 42, Amusement and Video Games.
Appropriations. To appropriate municipal moneys for any purpose within the powers of the Council.
Auctioneers. To regulate the sale of all kinds of property at auction within the Town and to license auctioneers.
Band. To establish a municipal band, symphony orchestra or other musical organization, and to regulate by ordinance the conduct and policies thereof.
Billboards. To license, tax and regulate, restrain or prohibit the erection or maintenance of billboards within the city, the placing of signs, bills and posters of every kind and description on any building, fence, post, billboard, pole or other place within the Town.
Bridges. To erect and maintain bridges.
Buildings.[2] To make reasonable regulations in regard to buildings to be erected in the Town and to grant building permits for the same; to formulate a building code and a plumbing code and to appoint a Building Inspector and a Plumbing Inspector and to require reasonable charges for permits and inspections; to regulate and restrict the height, number of stories and size of buildings and other structures, the size of yards, courts and open spaces and the location and use of buildings, structures and land for trade, industry or residence; to establish the distance buildings or any part thereof, fences or walls shall be erected from inner curb of street line; to direct in what part of the Town wooden buildings shall not be erected or constructed; to authorize and require the inspection of all buildings and structures and to authorize the condemnation thereof in whole or in part when dangerous or insecure and to require that such buildings and structures be made safe or taken down; to remove or cause to be removed buildings or other structures that may be dangerous to persons passing along or over any of the public ways or sidewalks of the Town.
Editor's Note: As to building construction generally, see Ch. 47.
Cemeteries. To regulate the interment of bodies and to control the location and establishment of cemeteries.
Community services. To provide, maintain and operate such community and social services for the preservation and promotion of the health, recreation, welfare and enlightenment of the inhabitants of the municipality as the legislative body may determine.
Cooperative activities. To make agreements with other municipalities, counties, districts, bureaus, commissions and governmental authorities for the joint performance of or for cooperation in the performance of any governmental functions.
Corporate name. To change the corporate name of the municipality, provided that no such change shall affect any rights, duties or obligations held by the municipality, and provided further that such ordinance shall first be submitted to and approved by the qualified voters of the municipality at a regular or special municipal election.
Curfew. To prohibit the youth from being on the streets and public places at unreasonable hours of the night.[3]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 51, Curfew.
Dangerous improvements. To compel persons about to undertake dangerous improvements to execute bonds with sufficient sureties conditioned that the owner or contractor will pay all damages resulting from such work which may be sustained by any persons or property.
Departments. To create, change and abolish offices, departments or agencies, other than the offices, departments and agencies established by this Charter; to assign additional functions or duties to offices, departments or agencies established by this Charter, but not including the power to discontinue or assign to any other office, department or agency any function or duty assigned by this Charter to a particular office, department or agency.
Dogs.[4] To regulate the keeping of dogs in the Town and to provide for the licensing and taxing of the same; to provide for the disposition of homeless dogs and dogs on which no license fees or taxes are paid.
Editor's Note: See Ch. 43, Animals.
Explosives. To regulate or prevent the storage of gunpowder, oil or any other explosive or combustible matter; to regulate or prevent the use of firearms, fireworks, bonfires, explosives or any other similar things tending to endanger persons or property.[5]
Editor's Note: As to firearms and similar devices, see Ch. 58, Firearms and Similar Devices.
Filth. To compel the occupant of any premises, building or outhouse situated in the Town, if it has become filthy or unwholesome, to abate or cleanse the condition; and after reasonable notice to the owners or occupants to authorize such work to be done by the proper officers and to assess the expense thereof against the property, making it collectible by taxes or against the occupant or occupants.
Finances. To levy, assess and collect taxes and to borrow money within the limits provided by this Charter; to expend municipal funds for any purpose deemed to be public and to affect the safety, health and general welfare of the Town and its inhabitants; to have general management and control of the finances of the Town.
Fire. To suppress fires and prevent the dangers thereof and to establish and maintain a fire department; to inspect buildings for the purpose of reducing fire hazards, to issue regulations concerning fire hazards and to forbid and prohibit the use of fire hazardous buildings and structures permanently or until the conditions of Town fire hazard regulations are met; and to take all other measures necessary to control and prevent fires in the Town.[6]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 60, Fire Prevention.
Food. To inspect and to require the condemnation of, if unwholesome, and to regulate the sale of any food products.
Franchises. To grant and regulate franchises to water companies, electric light companies, gas companies, telegraph and telephone companies, transit companies, taxicab companies and any others which may be deemed advantageous and beneficial to the Town, subject to the limitations and provisions of state law. No franchise shall be granted for a longer period than 50 years.
Garbage. To require, regulate and/or provide for the collection and removal of filth, garbage or any matter or thing that is or may become injurious to the health or comfort of the inhabitants of the Town of Mount Airy and to provide whether the expense, if any, shall be borne by individual property owners or tenants or shall be paid for in whole or in part by the Town.[7]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 64, Garbage, Trash and Litter.
Grants-in-aid. To accept gifts and grants of federal or state funds from the federal or state governments or any agency thereof and to expend the same for any lawful public purpose, agreeable to the conditions under which the gift or grant was made.
Hawkers. To regulate and provide for the issuing of licenses or permits for hawking, peddling and vending of wares and merchandise of every description upon the public ways in the Town and to regulate and provide for the issuing of licenses or permits to all persons who may go from house to house to vend or sell any wares or merchandise; to regulate and provide for the issuing of licenses to all traveling persons who dispense medicines or medical advice.
Health. To protect and preserve the health of the Town and its inhabitants; to appoint a public health officer and to define and regulate his powers and duties; to prevent the introduction of contagious diseases into the Town; to establish quarantine regulations and to authorize the removal and confinement of persons having contagious or infectious diseases; to prevent and remove all nuisances; to inspect, regulate and abate any buildings, structures, places or conditions which cause or may cause unsanitary conditions or conditions detrimental to health; provided, that nothing herein shall be construed to affect in any manner any of the powers and duties of the State Board of Health, the County Board of Health or any public general or local law relating to the subject of health.
House numbers. To regulate the numbering of houses and lots and to compel owners to renumber them or in default thereof to authorize and require the work to be done by the Town at the owner's expense, such expense to constitute a lien upon the property collectible as tax moneys.
Inspections. To authorize and require the inspection of gas pipes, water pipes, plumbing apparatus, electric lines and wires and drainage and sewage systems on private property and to compel repairs thereon.
Jail. To establish and regulate a station house or lockup for temporary confinement of violators of the laws and ordinances of the Town and to make provision for the use of the Carroll County Jail and the Frederick County Jail.
Licenses. To issue licenses to any and all persons entering into or beginning transient business in the Town for the sale of any goods, wares or merchandise; to license and regulate all restaurants, pawnbrokers, junk dealers, fire and slaughter sales, auctioneers and auction sales; to license and regulate any business or calling or place of amusement; to establish and collect fees and charges for all licenses and permits issued under the authority of this Charter.
Liens. To provide that any valid charges, taxes or assessments made against any real property within the municipality shall be liens upon such property to be collected in the same manner as municipal taxes are collected.
Lights. To provide for the lighting of the Town.
Livestock. To regulate and prohibit the running at large of cattle, horses, swine, fowl, sheep, goats, dogs or other animals; to authorize the impounding, keeping, sale and redemption of such animals when found in violation of the ordinance in such cases provided.
Markets. To obtain by lease or rent, own, construct, purchase, operate and maintain public markets within the Town.
Merit system. To establish a merit system in connection with the appointment of all municipal officials and employees not elected or appointed under the Constitution or public general or public locals laws of the state, and to request and avail themselves of the facilities of the Commissioner of State Employment and Registration for the administration of such merit system without unnecessary expense.
Minor privileges. To regulate or prevent the use of public ways, sidewalks and public places for signs, awnings, posts, steps, railings, entrances, racks, posting handbills and advertisements and display of goods, wares and merchandise.
Noise. To regulate or prohibit unreasonable ringing of bells, crying of goods or sounding of whistles and horns.
Nuisances. To prevent or abate by appropriate ordinance all nuisances in the Town which are so defined at common law, by this Charter or by the laws of the State of Maryland, whether the same be herein specifically named or not; to regulate, restrain or prohibit the keeping or running at large in the Town of all animals and fowl; to regulate, to prohibit, to control the location of or to require the removal from the Town of all trading in, handling of, or manufacture of any commodity which is or may become offensive, obnoxious or injurious to the public comfort or health. In this connection the Town may regulate, prohibit, control the location of or require the removal from the Town of such things as stockyards, slaughterhouses, cattle or hog pens, tanneries, renderies and livery stables. This listing is by way of enumeration, not limitation.
Obstructions. To remove all nuisances and obstructions from the streets, lanes and alleys and from any lots adjoining thereto or any other places within the limits of the Town.
Parking facilities. To license and regulate and to establish, obtain by purchase, by lease or by rent, own, construct, operate and maintain parking lots and other facilities for off-street parking.
Parking meters. To install parking meters on the streets and public places of the Town in such places as by ordinance they determine, and by ordinance to prescribe rates and provisions for the use thereof; but the installation of parking meters on any street or road maintained by the State Highway Administration shall be subject to its approval.
Parks. To establish and maintain such parks, gardens, playgrounds and recreational facilities as, in the discretion of the legislative body, are deemed to be for the health and welfare of the municipality and its inhabitants.
Pensions. To provide a retirement or pension system or a group insurance plan for its officers or employees or for including its officers and employees in any retirement or pension system operated by or in conjunction with the state, on such terms and conditions as state laws may prescribe.
Police force. To establish, operate and maintain a police force. All Town policemen shall have the powers and authority of constables in this state.
Police powers.
To prohibit, suppress and punish within the Town all vice, gambling and games of chance; streetwalkers and the keeping of bawdy houses and houses of ill fame; all tramps and vagrants; all disorder, disturbances, annoyances, disorderly conduct and drunkenness.
To enforce all ordinances relating to disorderly conduct and the suppression of nuisances equally within the limits of the municipality and beyond those limits for 1/2 mile or for so much of this distance as does not conflict with the powers of another municipal corporation.
Public property.
To acquire property, real or personal, within or without the boundaries of the Town for any public purpose by purchase, gift, bequest, devise, lease, condemnation or otherwise; to construct and maintain all buildings necessary for the operation of the Town government; to control and protect the public grounds and property of the Town; and to convey any real or leasehold property when no longer needed for the public use, after having given at least 20 days' public notice of the proposed conveyance; to control, protect and maintain public buildings, grounds and property of the Town.
To take by gift, grant, bequest or devise and to hold real and personal property absolutely or in trust for parks or gardens or for the erection of statues, monuments, buildings or structures or for any public use, upon such terms and conditions as may be prescribed by the grantor or donor and accepted by the municipality; to provide for the proper administration of the same; and to convey the same when such legislative body determines that it is no longer needed for public purposes, subject to the terms and conditions of the original grants.
Public utilities. To establish, construct, own, purchase, control, operate, maintain, manage or regulate any utilities, including a water supply system and a sewage disposal system.
Purchases through Purchasing Bureau. To provide for the purchase of materials, supplies and equipment through the Purchasing Bureau of the State Department of General Services whenever desirable.
Quarantine. To establish quarantine regulations in the interests of the public health.
Regulations. To adopt and enforce within the corporate limits police, health, sanitary, fire, building, plumbing, traffic, speed, parking and other similar regulations not in conflict with the laws of the State of Maryland.
Removals and suspensions. To remove or temporarily suspend from office any person who has been appointed to any municipal office and who after due notice and hearing is adjudged to have been guilty of inefficiency, malfeasance, misfeasance, nonfeasance, misconduct in office or insubordination; and to fill the vacancy caused by such removal or suspension.
Seal. To make, have and use, and from time to time, alter a common Seal.
Sidewalks. To regulate the use of sidewalks and all structures in, under or above them; to require the owner or occupant of premises to keep the sidewalks in front thereof free from snow or other obstructions; to prescribe hours for cleaning sidewalks.
Staff. The authority to override the termination of a Town employee by the Mayor as set forth in § C4-4B.
[Added 2-1-2010 by Res. No. 2010-01[8]]
Editor's Note: This resolution also redesignated former Subsection B(55) through (58) as Subsection B(56) through (59), respectively.
Sweepings. To regulate and prevent the throwing of sweepings, dust, ashes, offal, garbage, paper, handbills, dirty liquids or other unwholesome materials into any public way or onto any public or private property in the Town.
Vehicles. To regulate, license and tax wagons, automobiles, taxicabs and any other vehicles used in the Town for transporting goods or persons for hire.[9]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 105, Vehicles and Traffic.
Weights and measures. To inspect and regulate all weights and measures used within the Town.
Zoning and planning.[10] To zone and plan the Town in accordance with state law.
Editor's Note: See Ch. 98, Subdivision of Land and Site Plan Review, and Ch. 112, Zoning.
The enumeration contained in § C3-1 is not to be construed as limiting the powers of the Town to the several subjects mentioned.
For the purpose of carrying out the powers enumerated in § C3-1 of this Charter, for the preservation of cleanliness, health, peace and good order of the Town, for the protection of the lives and property of the citizens, and to suppress, abate and discontinue or cause to be suppressed, abated or discontinued all nuisances within the corporate and sanitary limits of the Town, the Council may pass all ordinances which shall from time to time be deemed necessary. To ensure the observance of these ordinances, in addition to the usual action of debt or such other civil remedies as may exist in such cases by law for the recovery of the penalties thereto affixed, the Council may affix thereto penalties of a fine not exceeding $500 or imprisonment for not exceeding 90 days or both. The Council may also make provision for municipal infractions as set forth in § C12-5.
All the powers of the Town shall be exercised in the manner prescribed by this Charter, or, if the manner be not prescribed, then in such manner as may be prescribed by ordinance.