AGENDA ITEM 6B
February 2, 2016
zyo1.Lor Legislative Analyst
Bill 52-15, Administrative Procedures - Summary Decision
Government Operations and Fiscal Policy Committee recommendation (2-0, Councilmember
recommended approval of Bill 52-15 with amendments to require:
a motion for a summary decision 30 days before a hearing; and
a finding that the moving party is entitled to prevail as a matter of law when a
motion is granted.
Bill 52-15, Administrative Procedures - Summary Decision, lead sponsor Council
President Floreen at the request of the Hearing Examiner, was introduced on December 8, 2015.
A public hearing was held on January 12, 2016. There were no speakers at the hearing. A
Government Operations and Fiscal Policy Committee worksession was held on January 21.
Most hearings involve the presentation of facts or opinions that are in dispute. At the
conclusion of such proceedings, the presiding officer decides which view is more persuasive. On
occasion, only an interpretation of a law or regulation is at issue.
such cases there are agreed
upon facts but different opinions on the correct outcome.
these latter cases, courts have the
ability to make its decision without an evidentiary hearing when the court sustains a party's motion
for summary judgement. Bill 52-15 would revise the Administrative Procedures Act to similarly
allow a summary decision. Such a summary decision would save all parties from the time and
expense of an otherwise unnecessary evidentiary hearing.
Eng'g Mgmt. Servs. V Md. State Highway Admin,
375 Md 211(2003), the Court of
Appeals found that the Maryland Board of Contract Appeals lacked the authority to grant a motion
for summary disposition in the absence of rules ofprocedure that stated the conditions under which
the motion could be granted. After amending the procedural regulations, the court was satisfied
that the following regulation satisfied the Court's concern:
A party may move for summary decision on any appropriate issue in the case.