About Statutes

This page accesses the Code of Maryland (Statutes) and the Maryland Municipal Charters and Resolutions as compiled and maintained by the Department of Legislative Services.

The Code is arranged by and organized into “Articles” (e.g. Transportation Article), which are further subdivided into “titles”, “subtitles”, “sections”, “subsections”, “paragraphs”, subparagraphs”, etc.

Note that the “official” compilation of the laws (Chapters) enacted at each session of the General Assembly is published by the State as the “Laws of Maryland”, commonly referred to as the “Session Laws”. The Session Laws for each session are compiled chronologically by chapter number and serve as the source law from which the statutes accessed here are derived.

While the “Laws of Maryland” (Session Laws) constitute the official laws of the State, this Code and the annotated versions noted below are accepted as “evidence” of the law in all State courts and by all public offices and officials (See § 10-201 of the Courts & Judicial Proceedings Article). However, in the event of a conflict between the Code and the Session Laws, the Session Laws prevail.

Note: Annotated versions of the Code, published by LexisNexis and West, are available in book and online formats. These Annotated Codes include references to case law, related citations, and explanatory notations.

The Municipal Charters are updated each year by incorporating all charter resolutions received by the Department through May 31 of that year. Individual Municipal Resolutions are published to the General Assembly website as they are received by the Department.

Statute Text

Article - Local Government
(a)    (1)   The voters of a code county may submit to referendum, by petition, a public local law or a part of a public local law enacted under this subtitle.
(2)   The referendum shall be:
(i)   at the next regular congressional election unless the county commissioners, by resolution, schedule a special election;
(ii)   in accordance with the requirements of Title 7 of the Election Law Article as to time, notice, and form; and
(iii)   for adoption or rejection by a majority of those voting on the question.
(b)    (1)   Subject to paragraph (2) of this subsection, a referendum petition shall:
(i)   be filed with the county board of elections within 40 days after a public local law is enacted; and
(ii)   contain the signatures of at least 10% of the voters of the code county.
(2)   If more than one–half but less than the full number of signatures required to complete a referendum petition against a public local law are filed within 40 days after the public local law is enacted, the time for the public local law to take effect and the time for filing the remainder of signatures to complete the referendum petition is extended for an additional 40 days.
(c)    (1)   Subject to paragraph (2) of this subsection, a referendum petition may consist of several papers.
(2)   Each paper shall:
(i)   contain the full text of the public local law or part of the public local law petitioned to referendum; and
(ii)   have attached to it an affidavit of the individual who procured the signatures on the petition that certifies that to the best of the individual’s personal knowledge, information, and belief:
1.   each signature on the petition is genuine; and
2.   the signers are voters in the code county.
(d)   The county board of elections shall verify the voter registration of each signer.
(e)    (1)   Except as provided in paragraph (2) of this subsection, if a legally sufficient referendum petition on a public local law is filed with the county board of elections, the public local law does not take effect until 30 days after its approval by a majority of the voters voting on the question.
(2)   An emergency law petitioned to referendum:
(i)   remains in effect from its effective date notwithstanding the filing of the referendum petition; but
(ii)   is repealed 30 days after its rejection by a majority of the voters voting on the question.