QUESTION A: GOVERNING PERSONNEL REGULATIONS FOR COUNTY EMPLOYES.
This charter amendment is designed to give the County Council the right to initiate and pass laws concerning personnel policy. At present, the council is considering a comprehensive measure establishing a new merit system for county employes. Passage of the ordinance would clarify the council's right to put that law into effect.
The council now has the right to approve regulations drawn up by the three-member, bipartisan county personnel board - regulations governing such things as employe qualifications, job classifications and hiring and firing porcedures. Passage of this measure would clarify the council's right to legislate on these matters.
QUESTION B: VOTER APPROVAL OF CAPITAL IMPROVEMENT PROJECTS.
This question would require voter approval of certain capital improvement projects before the county could issue bonds to finance the projects.
At present, the County Council must pass a capital budget - in addition to its operating budget - containing proposed capital projects that have appeared regularly in the annually published Six-Year Capital Improvement Program.
If approved, this question would require that capital projects costing more than a set amount - to be determined by the council - and other capital projects that the council determines are of public interest be individually authorized by the voters. This requirement would be bypassed only by a vote of five members of the seven-members council, if the capital project involves more than one jurisdiction or if it is required by law or by an interstate agreement.
QUESTION C: CHANGING QUALIFICATIONS FOR VOTERS WHO SIGN REFERENDUM PETITIONS.
Under current law, all "qualified voter" have been allowed to sign petitions putting a referendum question on the ballot; this has been interpreted to mean "registered voters." This question, if passed, would change the language of the charter to read "registered voters."
In addition, this question, if passed, would extend the time for obtaining signatures. Currently, a petition must be filed 75 days after a bill becomes law; under the new procedures, a petition could be filed 90 days after a bill becomes law, provided half the necessary signatures have been obtained within the first 75 days.
QUESTION D: BUDGETARY CONTROL.
If approved, this question would require that increases in the county budget could not exceed the percentage increase in the Consumer Price Inded for the same year. This requirement could be waived only b a vote of five of the seven County Council members.
The present practice is for a majority of the County Council to approve operating budgets. There is now no limit on budgetary increases. (This question will not go into effect if Question E is passed.)
QUESTION E: TAX RATE CUTBACK.
This is the TRIM question advocated by the members of the group called Tax Relief in Montgomery. If approved, it would cut the present property tax rate to $2.25 Per $100 of assessed valuation. The imposition of new taxes or an increase in other country taxes, except fire district taxes, would be forbidden unless the council declared a state of emergency, held public hearings and six of the seven council members voted for the change.
At present, tax rates are set by a majority of the County Council, subject to requirements of state law.
QUESTION E: LANDFILLS ON RESIDENTIALLY ZONED LAND.
The question, if approved, would forbid use of county funds to operate a landfill on land zoned for residential use. At present, state law requires the county to select landfill sites, subjects to state approval.