IN ADDITION TO CHOOSING among the candidates on Tuesday, voters in Maryland will be setting state and local policy on a variety of issues - through their responses to ballot questions.
On the statewide ballot , we think all 12 questions deserve votes "For". Many involve procedural improvements in state government operations - including one requiring that any state constitutional amendment affecting only one jurisdiction be approved by a majority of voters in that jurisdiction as well as throughout the state. This category includes Questions 1, 2, 3, 8, 9, 10 and 11. Questions 5, 7 and 12 would allow local "quick-take" simplified condemnation procedures.
Question 4 pertains to Prince George's County, where all 11 council members are elected in a county-wide vote - even though each of five council members is required to live in one of the county's five districts. This system has helped the Democratic Party control the county government; it should be changed. A vote "For" supports the switch in 1982 to six at large and five district council members.
The most far-reaching question on the statewide ballots is Question 6. It would require the governor to include in the budget, without revision, money for programs specifically approved by the legislature; the governor could not refuse, as Gov. Marvin Mandel did in clash over the state's foster-care program. We think a vote "For" supports an orderly and democratic legislative process.
On the Prince George's ballot, we have already urged a vote "Against" Question G, the TRIM amendment. Question F - requiring voter approval of all Metro construction bonds - also deserves a vote "Against." It is too restrictive; these bonds currently can be sold by the county executive if approved by a majority of the council - which is fair enough. The rest of the proposals, including one hospital bond issue to complete a project already in progress, deserve votes "For."
On the Montgomery County ballot , we find only two questions worthy for votes "For". Questions A and C, proposing procedural improvements. Questions D and E are the tax and budget proposals that we oppose. Question B would require voter approval of certain capital projects before bonds could be issued - another overly restrictive barrier to effective elected government. Similarly, Question F, forbiding use of county money for certain landfills, is too restrictive.
In Howard County , one ballot question has been drawing considerable attention: Question A, providing for deposits on beverage containers. Aimed at cutting sanitation costs and encouraging sales of beverages in economical returnable containers, this measure deserves voter approval.