The Avalon Shores residential community does NOT have a homeowner’s association. We are a Maryland Special Community Benefit District (SCBD). There are three types of special taxing districts in Anne Arundel County (Special Community Benefit Districts, Shore Erosion Control Districts, and Waterways Improvement Districts). Each type of district is established by legislation of the County Council. The law concerning Special Community Benefit Districts appears in Article 6, Section 2 of the Anne Arundel County Code.
Each Special Community Benefit District must be administered by a community association that is incorporated, that is open to all property owners in the district, and that represents a majority of property owners in the district. Our community is administered by the Avalon Shores Civic Association, a registered, bonded, not-for-profit civic association. Election of officers and board members is held annually and all adult resident property owners are eligible to vote and to hold office if elected. Residents need to realize the importance of active community participation in their own civic association, which plays a large role in deciding local tax levels and administering community solutions to shared needs.
Special Community Benefit Districts are formed for a wide variety of purposes—the community itself wants some public benefit that it would not receive otherwise. Purposes for forming into a Special Community Benefit District might include: to maintain community owned property, to offer special security or police protection, to improve community facilities, to repay loans, or to fund certain insect or pest control programs. Our community expenses are decided and covered as outlined below.
We must prepare and submit to the County a yearly budget detailing how tax funds collected will be spent and the tax rate necessary to support the budget. Thus, each year, the Board of Directors develops a budget to cover the operating and maintenance expenses of the common community property (the ball field and playground, the playground at the beach area, the swimming area, swim platform, and nettle net, the boat ramp, fishing pier, all the landscaping expenses for the common space, and any other critical or agreed-upon community needs). The budget is then presented to residents and voted on at a public meeting. Once approved by the residents, the budget is submitted to Anne Arundel County for their approval. When the County approves the budget, the bottom line is divided by the number of properties, which sets the portion of the County taxes we all pay that will be dedicated to meet the budgeted expenses. As property owners, we are taxing ourselves to fund the particular benefits for which our Association was formed. We tell the County what tax rate to collect and they do it, in conjunction with any other County taxes they levy. That’s where the funding comes from for our Association.
Each district must pay to the County a yearly administrative fee that is a percentage of the special taxes assessed on the properties in the district. Currently, the rate is 5%, with a minimum of $100 and a maximum of $2,000. Special Community Benefit Districts must submit yearly financial reports that are reviewed by the County Auditor and are subject to stringent State of Maryland regulations.
For further information regarding our SCBD, contact:
Special Taxing District Coordinator
Anne Arundel County
P.O. Box 2700 MS 1400
Annapolis, Maryland 21404