There are 157 incorporated municipalities in Maryland. The oldest incorporated city in Maryland is Annapolis, founded in 1708. The most recent municipal incorporation was North Chevy Chase in Montgomery County, which was established in 1996.
The largest Maryland municipality is Baltimore City with a population of 621,000. The smallest municipality is Port Tobacco in Charles County with 13 residents.
Municipalities and counties are equal forms of government under Maryland law.
There are no municipalities in either Baltimore or Howard Counties.
Under Marylandís Smart Growth laws, all municipalities are considered Priority Funding Areas (PFAs).
Municipalities provide essential quality-of-life services such as water and sewer, police protection, trash removal, recycling, snow removal, parks and recreation, road maintenance, and streetlights.
Marylandís municipalities, on average, rely on the local property tax to fund over two-thirds of municipal general fund budgets. Other general fund revenue sources include State aid, business licenses, personal income taxes, and user fees.
The median Maryland municipality has a population of 1,800, employs 10 staff members, maintains a budget of a slightly over $1 million, and covers an area of about three- quarters of a square mile.
Unlike counties, municipalities do not receive recordation fees or transfer taxes on properties sold within their borders.
Municipal Highway User Revenues (HURs) were reduced in FY 2010 from approximately $45 million to $1.6 million. Since that date, municipalities have received a total of $65 million, which is less than one-quarter of what they would have received if HURs were fully funded during those years.
The property tax set off issue has been a municipal concern for many years. Many municipal residents pay county property taxes for county services that they do not receive.
The imposition of both a county and municipal property tax on municipal residents is a significant financial burden for many municipal residents and can be a deterrent to attracting new development to cities and towns.