Vital Facts Profiles of Maryland

Posted by Facts Profiles of Maryland on 1/23/2003 1:00:42 PM | Views: 0 |

Vital Facts Profiles of Maryland

Rich in over 350 years of history and natural resources, Maryland has four regions, each with its own appeal. The central part of the state is horse country, noted for its breeding farms and race tracks as well as for its recreational attractions and national historic shrines. The western part is a mountainous four-season recreation area. Southern Maryland, one of the greatest pleasure-boating centers on the east coast, is also the heart of the state's tobacco industry.

The eastern shore is tidewater country, with lush farms and quaint fishing villages. The state has approximately 4,100 miles of tidal shoreline, and more than 740,000 acres of open space and recreation area. Although Maryland is composed of 23 counties (plus Baltimore City, which is not part of any county), more than 33% of its residents, 1.4 million people, live in Prince George's and Montgomery counties.

Tax Situation: Income: State from 2% on the first $1,000 of taxable income to 5% on taxable income in excess of $3,000. County taxes on individuals range from 30% to 60% of the state income tax liability. Real estate: $.21 per $100 assessment (plus county and municipal tax rates). Property taxes; 40%/$100 of fair market value (amount phased in over 3 years).

Throughout Maryland certain categories of dozens may apply for property tax relief: 100% disabled veterans pay no property tax on their personal residence; 100% blind persons are exempted from paying property tax on the first $6,000 of personal residence assessed value; a credit is allowed to homeowners who earn up to $36,000; elderly or disabled homeowners or renters may receive special tax credits. Sales: 5% on meals and goods, not repair services (exempt some grocery food, prescription drugs). Salad bar, snack foods are taxable. 23.5 cents/gallon gasoline. Liquor: $1.50/gaL; for wine, $.40/gal.; for beer, .09/gal. Cigarettes: $.36/per pack of 20. Amusement tax, 1/2 lo 10% depending on jurisdiction (county, city, town) setting the rate.

Public Facilities and Services: In addition to county and some local police, more than 1,600 Maryland State Troopers, quartered at 26 installations, are on constant patrol. Although most libraries in the state are under county control, there is a statewide arrangement which permits you to borrow or return books anywhere in Maryland.

Public Schools: Maryland's 24 public school systems exercise considerable local control under a strong and progressive State Board of Education. Public schools throughout the state number 1,262 including elementary, middle and combined grades, high schools, and vocational-technical centers. Public school enrollment: 790,938; estimated average teachers salary: $40,653. Salary range is $22,817 to $60,435. Various counties in Maryland have adopted ungraded or individualized teaching situations in some public schools, mosdy for grades 1-6. Average spending per pupil was $6,412 in public schools.

This excludes expenditures for new equipment, adult education, school construction, debt service, student body activities, community services, which are offered through local governments. Non public school statistics include: total 1,024, including 457 kindergarten and preschool facilities, 332 elementary schools, 72 secondary, 163 middle and combined grade schools. (Catholic system: 128 elementary, 29 secondary, I middle and 11 combined grades, about 56,848 students.) Total non-public school enrollment: 159,723.

Colleges and Universities: Higher education in Maryland includes: 17 2-year community college systems, publicly operated and state accredited; 3 private state accredited 2-year colleges; 13 public 4-year colleges and campuses of the University of Maryland; and 22 independent 4-year state accredited colleges and universities.

Organizations: In the densely populated areas of Maryland which may be considered part of the Washington environment, the new settler will find the civic, fraternal, professional, patriotic, cultural, and social groups in which he or she has an interest. For example: Montgomery County Association for Retarded Citizens (educational advocacy training), offers preschool, community, residential programs, adult day programs, library, transportation services, information and referral, parent support, family services. Information: (301) 948-5792. Prince George's Association, with some similar services: (301) 925-7050. (See Community Profile for details.)

Recreational Facilities: Maryland operates an extensive parks and forestry program. The state parks system includes approximately 240,000 acres, 35 state parks, with 39 fishing areas and 19 public boat landings. The Department of Natural Resources manages 125,00 acres in 10 state forests, mosdy in Western Maryland and the Eastern Shore.

Hunting, in season with permit, is allowed on most state forest land and some of the forests offer stocked fisheries. There are about 130 boat landing open to the public for fishermen, sailing enthusiasts, and boaters, plus numerous private and commercial docks and landings along the many miles of rivers, lakes and Chesapeake Bay in Maryland. Extensive additional park resources are made available by municipalities and counties in Maryland. (See Vital Fact Profiles that follow.)

Medical Facilities: Many of Maryland's 52 accredited hospitals (1994-95) are located in the Washington and Baltimore areas, but medical facilities are convenient to all areas of the state. There are more than 25 alcohol treatment facilities, 209 nursing homes, and 11 ambulatory surgical centers (1993-94) accredited in Maryland. Two of the most well-respected teaching hospitals in the country are located in Baltimore. Johns Hopkins University Hospital specializes in many areas, including cancer and eye disorders.

The University of Maryland Hospital is one of the foremost centers in shock trauma care, using Medivac helicopters to support their emergency care system. The National Institutes of Health, in Bethesda, is the federal research organization, often on the leading edge of medical discoveries. Physician referral is required to participate in NIH studies or treatment. The state is pursuing a program of health cost containment to reduce excess hospital capacity,

Driver's License: Must be obtained within 30 days of establishing Maryland residence. Applicants 16 to 18 years must have passed an approved driver's education course and must present a certificate from the course. Learner's permits can be obtained at 15 years, 9 months. First time permittees charged S30 for 4-year license. Motorcycles are licensed under the same regulations and fees. Officers and employees of the United States are exempt from licensing requirements vrhile driving on official business in a vehicle owned or leased by the United States. Non-resident permit $20. Students and interns must pay a $18 non-resident fee for permit if their states have reciprocity with Maryland. Military personnel and dependents may use valid licenses from home of record.

Insurance: You will be required to carry liability insurance in the amounts of $20,000 per person and $40,000 per accident; property damage in the amount of $10,000 per accident. Uninsured motorist coverage in like amounts.

Motor Vehide Taxes and Inspections: The Maryland excise tax is 5% of the purchase price of the vehicle, if recently purchased and not tided in the applicant's name in another jurisdiction, and if verified by a notarized Bill of Sale, signed by both buyer and seller, which describes the vehicle by year, make, and serial number. The 5% excise tax is based on the "fair market value" of the vehicle, if the vehicle is tided in the applicant's name in another jurisdiction, unless the vehicle is over 7 years old, in which case the tax is based on a minimum of $500.00.

Annual registration fee for cars: $70 (2 years) (up to 3,700 Ibs.) and $97 (2 years) (over 3,700 Ibs.). Vehicles must be inspected biannually for emissions, unless the vehide is over 15 years old. Diesels are exempt. Testing fee is $8.50 cash. Failure to have vehicles inspected can result in suspension of driving license. There is a $10 late fee per month for late inspection.

Right Turn on Red:Are permitted in Maryland at all traffic lights after turning vehicle stops to yield right of way, unless the intersection is otherwise marked.

Speed Limits: Controlled access highways and dual-lane through highways 55 MPH, except in those areas specifically marked 65 MPH, ordinary highways 50 MPH, business or residential 25 MPH to 35 MPH, and 15 MPH in school zones




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