Friday, November 13, 2015

Democracy in Action

This is going to be brief because I sliced up my right index finger this morning opening a tin of corned beef and, for heaven's sake, that's my primary typing finger.


We often feel that we have something to say to the powers that be but nobody asks us. "Well, I would have said something, but nobody asked me." The big news in Howard County is that someone is asking, and you need to seize your chance to be heard.


1. Join in and participate in one of HCEA/PATH 's Listening Sessions and share your opinions on Howard County Schools. These meetings are short (one hour only), to the point (3 questions for discussion),and civil (no one will jump on you if they disagree).


2. December 1st at 7:30 pm.

The Howard County Delegation of the Maryland General Assembly, chaired by Delegate Shane Pendergrass and Senator Guy Guzzone, will hear testimony from the public on drafted local bills. (No testimony on stateside issues will be permitted as a second hearing devoted to them will be scheduled.)

Any individual may speak for up to 3 minutes as long as they are signed up. Signup will begin at 6.45pm in the Bannekar room and will close at 7.20pm. Advance sign up is not available. The delegation encourages you to bring written copies of your testimony (preferably 15) to distribute to us, though it is not a requirement to speak. The hearing is scheduled as follows:

Tuesday, December 1st, 2015 - 7:30 p.m.Banneker Room, George Howard Building3430 Courthouse Drive, Ellicott City, MD

The 2016 legislative session will begin on January 13, 2016

TWO BILLS DIRECTLY RELATED TO HOWARD COUNTY EDUCATION:Howard County Public School System - Access to Public Information Ho. Co. 9-16By: Delegate Miller

  • FOR the purpose of requiring a certain notice provided by the custodian of a public record for the Howard County Public School System be made in writing under penalty of perjury; requiring the custodian to provide written notice to an applicant regarding the right to file a certain complaint with the State Public Information Act Compliance Board; requiring the custodian, under certain circumstances, to petition the Public Access Ombudsman concerning a request to inspect a public record; providing that the custodian may deny inspection of an intra-agency letter or memorandum only after a declaration by a court under certain circumstances; and generally relating to the Howard County Public School System and access to public information.

Howard County Board of Education - Elected School Board Ho. Co. 12-16By: Delegate Atterbeary

  • FOR the purpose of requiring that, beginning with a certain election, certain members of the Howard County Board of Education be elected by districts and certain members be elected at large; providing that a member elected to the county board from a certain geographic area but whose district boundaries are subsequently altered may remain as a member of the county board for a certain period; providing that in making an appointment to fill a vacancy on the county board the County Executive of Howard County shall endeavor to ensure that the county board reflects certain characteristics of the county population; providing for the termination of the terms of certain members of the county board; providing for the application of this Act; providing for a delayed effective date; and generally relating to the election of the members of the Howard County Board of Education

3. December 8 at 7pm.

The Rouse Community Foundation Building Room 400.

Details to Follow.

There will be a Town Hall Meeting for Citizens to meet with some of their State Delegation to let them know how they feel about what's going on with the school system. I do not know if other topics will also be discussed.

I believe this is the result of efforts by Warren Miller, Delegate for District 9A and Frank Turner, Delegate for District 13 .

Both Sides of the political aisle are rallying to help the citizens of Howard County have their voices heard.


Forgive the wholesale copying and pasting but I'm one finger short and I want to get this information out. I participated in one of the Listening Sessions on Sunday. When it was over, one UUCC member stood up and said, "This is democracy in action."

I'm asking you to share this information and these dates widely. Please make every effort to participate and show that stakeholders care about our school system and deserve to have their voices heard.


People don't come around asking for your opinion every day. Let's show them democracy in action.



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