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Statutes Text

Article - Land Use


    (a)    In this division the following words have the meanings indicated.

    (b)    “Adaptive reuse” means a change granted by a legislative body under § 4–207 of this article to the use restrictions in a zoning classification, as those restrictions are applied to a particular improved property.

    (c)    “Charter county” means a county that has adopted charter home rule under Article XI–A of the Maryland Constitution.

    (d)    “Code county” means a county that has adopted code home rule under Article XI–F of the Maryland Constitution.

    (e)    “County” means a county of the State or Baltimore City.

    (f)    (1)    “Development” means an activity that materially affects the existing condition or use of any land or structure.

        (2)    “Development” does not include a normal agricultural activity.

    (g)    (1)    “Legislative body” means the elected body of a local jurisdiction.

        (2)    “Legislative body” includes:

            (i)    the board of county commissioners;

            (ii)    the county council; and

            (iii)    the governing body of a municipal corporation.

    (h)    (1)    “Local executive” means the chief executive of a local jurisdiction.

        (2)    “Local executive” includes:

            (i)    the board of county commissioners;

            (ii)    the county executive;

            (iii)    the executive head; and

            (iv)    the mayor.

    (i)    “Local jurisdiction” means a county or municipal corporation and the territory within which its powers may be exercised.

    (j)    (1)    “Local law” means an enactment of the legislative body of a local jurisdiction, whether by ordinance, resolution, or otherwise.

        (2)    “Local law” does not include a public local law.

    (k)    “Person” means an individual, receiver, trustee, guardian, personal representative, fiduciary, representative of any kind, partnership, firm, association, corporation, limited liability company, or other entity.

    (l)    (1)    “Plan” means the policies, statements, goals, and interrelated plans for private and public land use, transportation, and community facilities documented in texts and maps that constitute the guide for an area’s future development.

        (2)    “Plan” includes a general plan, master plan, comprehensive plan, functional plan, or community plan adopted in accordance with Subtitle 4 of this title and Title 3 of this article.

    (m)    “Priority funding area” has the meaning stated in § 5–7B–02 of the State Finance and Procurement Article.

    (n)    (1)    “Regulation” means a rule of general applicability and future effect.

        (2)    “Regulation” includes a map or plan.

    (o)    “Sensitive area” includes:

        (1)    a stream or wetland, and its buffers;

        (2)    a 100–year flood plain;

        (3)    a habitat of a threatened or endangered species;

        (4)    a steep slope;

        (5)    agricultural or forest land intended for resource protection or conservation; and

        (6)    any other area in need of special protection, as determined in a plan.

    (p)    “Special exception” means a grant of a specific use that:

        (1)    would not be appropriate generally or without restriction; and

        (2)    shall be based on a finding that:

            (i)    the requirements of the zoning law governing the special exception on the subject property are satisfied; and

            (ii)    the use on the subject property is consistent with the plan and is compatible with the existing neighborhood.

    (q)    (1)    Except as provided in paragraph (2) of this subsection, “state” means:

            (i)    a state, possession, territory, or commonwealth of the United States; or

            (ii)    the District of Columbia.

        (2)    When capitalized, “State” means Maryland.

    (r)    (1)    “Subdivision” means:

            (i)    the process and configuration of land by which one or more lots, tracts, or parcels of land are divided, consolidated, or established as one or more lots or parcels, or other divisions of land, consistent with criteria established by the legislative body of the local jurisdiction; or

            (ii)    the land so subdivided.

        (2)    “Subdivision” includes resubdivision.

    (s)    “Variance” means a modification only of density, bulk, dimensional, or area requirements in the zoning law that is not contrary to the public interest, and where, owing to conditions peculiar to the property and not because of any action taken by the applicant, a literal enforcement of the zoning law would result in unnecessary hardship or practical difficulty, as specified in the zoning law.

    (t)    (1)    “Zoning law” means the legislative implementation of regulations for zoning by a local jurisdiction.

        (2)    “Zoning law” includes a zoning ordinance, zoning regulation, zoning code, and any similar legislative action to implement zoning controls in a local jurisdiction.

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