The following editorials appeared in other zoned editions...

REGIONAL ROUNDUP

February 28, 1993

The following editorials appeared in other zoned editions of The Baltimore Sun last week.

Anne Arundel County

* County government's hallowed system of checks and balances hasn't done much checking lately. Since its election two years ago, the Anne Arundel County Council has, with one notable exception, been powerless to influence, slow down or stop Executive Robert R. Neall. Time after time, the seven lawmakers have taken a back seat while he drives the government wherever he wants. And they often don't know where he's going.

Here's an example: When Mr. Neall announced how he intended to manage a property tax cap, Council Chairman David G. Boschert was right there by his side, a symbol that the legislative and executive branches were together on the issue. But later it was clear the council didn't know what was happening. Mr. Boschert said he had doubts about Mr. Neall's idea; the rest of the council didn't seem to understand it. Yet they approved it anyway -- over the objections of their own budget adviser! . . .

One could argue that the county hasn't stalled in gridlock. . . . But this council has been too submissive. If it doesn't climb into the front seat with Mr. Neall, it should at least muster enough influence to get a look at his map. (Feb. 23)

Howard County

* Howard County Council members confront the midpoint in their four-year terms with few accomplishments of which to boast. In fact, the council is better defined by what it hasn't accomplished.

From councilmanic redistricting (still pending) to the defeat of legislation designed to create more affordable housing, council members have shown no consistency in their political philosophy and direction.

The comprehensive rezoning of the eastern portion of the county -- more unfinished business -- has council members locked in a bitter battle with constituents over the amount of growth the two sides will accept. . . .

With Democrats Shane Pendergrass, Vernon Gray and Paul Farragut rumored to be eyeing higher office, the rule of the day is often every man for himself. Likewise, Republicans Darryl Drown and Charles Feaga are sometimes at odds over matters reflecting the differences between their districts. . . .

[It is] a County Council proceeding in several directions at once, with no clear plan or objective in sight. (Feb. 23)

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