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How can property be rezoned?

Residents of or business owners in Anne Arundel County, Maryland, who want to use land for a purpose it is not zoned for will have to submit a rezoning request to the Zoning Division of the Office of Planning and Zoning, asking that the land be rezoned from one classification to another. If the land is located within 1,000 of tidal waters, it is included in the Chesapeake Bay Critical Area and a Critical Area report must be submitted along with the rezoning application.

The report must address any impact the rezoning will have on the area and a detailed explanation of how the impact will be mitigated. An application received for a rezoning request within the Chesapeake Bay Critical Area will be rejected in the report's absence.

Once an application has been accepted, a case number will be assigned. A number of agencies will review and comment on the request, including the Department of Natural Resources. After the Zoning Division reviews the application and the comments submitted by the various agencies, it will formulate its findings and recommendations, after which a hearing will be scheduled.

The property owner must post signs on the property notifying others of the proposed rezoning at least 30 days prior to the hearing. All property owners within 175 feet of the property will receive a written notice of the hearing. Once the hearing is concluded, the rezoning will be granted or denied. If the property owner disagrees with the decision, the property owner may appeal to the County Board of Appeals. Because of the complex nature of zoning laws, a landowner may find it helpful to use the services of an attorney with experience in real estate law to help submit an application or file an appeal.

Source: Anne Arundel County Citizens Information Center, "Rezoning Process", August 28, 2014

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