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House Bill Would Authorize Local Governments To Create An Infrastructure Fund

House Bill 55, now pending in the Maryland General Assembly, would authorize a county or municipality to “establish a local trust fund or other appropriate fund for the purpose of repairing or rehabilitating infrastructure with communities that are subject to the requirements of the Maryland Condominium Act or the Maryland Homeowners Association Act.”  The bill, which would add new Section 1-1318 to the Local Government Article, is expressly intended to address circumstances in communities in which the original developer designated roads and other infrastructure a private components to be owned and maintained by the condominium associations or homeowners associations.  The Bill’s preamble notes that owners living in such communities “are burdened by paying for repairs and services for the types of infrastructure that would otherwise be paid for by local governments, as well as paying property taxes that support this type of infrastructure in other condominium associations and homeowners associations with publicly managed infrastructure.”  Any fund created pursuant to this proposed legislation could be used to repair “infrastructure that is traditionally maintained by the county or a municipality for the benefit of the public, including roads and storm management facilities,” but may not be used to repair recreational facilities used exclusively by homeowners and guests.  Any such fund would be financed from property taxes paid by the members of the affected condominium or homeowners association.  A county or municipality could establish eligibility requirements, but must prioritize those associations the exhibit the greatest need for repair or rehabilitation.