howard county

The three-year-old saga of Maryland’s draconian requirement that petition signatures match exactly the signature on a voter’s registration card is not closer to resolution. An appeal to the U.S. Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals was denied Monday. The federal court decided to punt, saying there are no federal issues and sending the matter back once again to state court.

We’ve been telling you for some time about Maryland’s ridiculously strict requirements for a valid signature on a referendum petition. That requirement has taken out another effort by citizens to exercise their referendum rights in Howard County as 36% of their petition signatures were rejected.

At Citizens in Charge Foundation we seek to keep the initiative & referendum process open and accessible for those citizens who have it, and expand the process to those citizens who do not. We believe that the initiative & referendum process is a right that every citizen should have, regardless of what issue or policy they intend to use it for.

I am writing to provide an update on the CB58-2008 referendum petition drive that started last November after the Howard County Maryland Council approved a 300% zoning increase for the size of grocery stores in Turf Valley.You may recall that citizens gathered over 9,300 signatures to place this legislation on the ballot for voters to decide in the 2010 election.