Historical Formation & Legal Status
The Board of St. Mary’s County Commissioners (George R. Aud, J. Wilmer Bowles, and J.S. Guy, Jr.), on June 29, 1971 via Resolution No. 71-25 activated State Law Article 44-A establishing St. Mary’s County Housing Authority (a public body corporate and politic; a governmental entity by IRS Standards). This Resolution enabled the Housing Board Commissioners (Dr. James Patrick Jarboe, Mr. Leroy J. Thompson, Sr., Rev. Alfonso J. Harrod, Attorney John F. Slade, III and Mr. Raymond B. Robinson) to begin formal board service on July 19, 1971. The vanguard for St. Mary’s County Housing Authority involved the St. Mary’s County Leased Housing Corporation. This Corporation was established as a private non-profit corporation under the laws of Maryland in response to the demolition of Carver Heights, a declining World War II Navy housing project in Lexington Park, housing modest income civilian workers. The St. Mary’s County Leased Housing Corporation was formed to participate in the US Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Section 23 Leased Housing Program. This Corporation used revenue bonds to obtain financing to construct fifty (50) replacement housing units, plus an office at Tubman Douglass Estates in Great Mills, MD. The St. Mary’s County Housing Authority (SMCHA) leased and managed the new units and eventually all the assets of the St. Mary’s County Leased Housing Corporation were transferred to the Housing Authority. The organizing members of the St. Mary’s County Leased Housing Corporation were J. Michael McCauley, Brent Thompson and Joseph Carter. [While this is not a complete history, it should be mentioned that the NAACP, VISTA and others interested in providing a solution for the families who were about to be displaced also became involved and contributed.] * In 1990, the County Commissioners adopted Articles of Organization for SMCHA pursuant to Resolution No. 90-24, December 11, 1990 and recorded in Liber 007, page 281. This recordation listed the name of the authority as the Housing Authority of St. Mary’s County, Maryland (HASMC).
The Board of County Commissioners of St. Mary’s County, Maryland (BOCC) created the St. Mary’s County Housing Authority pursuant to Resolution No. 71-25 adopted on June 29, 1971 and recorded in Liber 1, Folio 179. Furthermore, on July 19, 1971, the BOCC made the Authority operational by appointing 5 persons as Commissioners of the St. Mary’s County Housing Authority. Their Commissioner service began on that date per Resolution No. 71-25.
Thereafter, Articles of Organization were adopted in 1990 pursuant to BOCC Resolution No. 90-24 and recorded in Liber 007, Page 281, naming the authority as the Housing Authority of St. Mary’s County, Maryland (HASMC). Accordingly, HASMC is also known as St. Mary’s County Housing Authority.
HASMC is a public body, corporate and politic, of the State of Maryland, exercising public and essential governmental functions, established pursuant to and operating under articles of organization (the “Articles”) adopted in accordance with Maryland Annotated Code 44A, and recodified as Title 12 of the Housing and Community Development Article of the Maryland Annotated Code effective October 1, 2006, as amended (the “Act”). In short, HASMC is a Governmental Unit per IRS standards.
Under State Law, its formation as a Housing Authority also positions HASMC as an instrumentality of the United States of America via the United States Housing Act of 1937, as amended. This Act and State Law exempt HASMC from local, state, and federal taxation.
HASMC is a not-for-profit governmental entity and, as a public body, is tax exempt; this exemption has not been modified or revoked by the Internal Revenue Service. Program activities for which the HASMC participates in are consistent with the Internal Revenue Service Code and HASMC’s tax exempt status. The HASMC has and/or will notify the Internal Revenue Service of any substantial and material changes in its character, purpose, and methods of operation, when applicable.
- A public housing agency is defined as a political subdivision of the State according to federal law dealing with taxation. A political subdivision must possess recognized sovereign power(s), i.e., the power to tax, the power of eminent domain or police power. (HASMC has the power of eminent domain.)
- A public housing authority is “Operated in the interest of the public without profit to private persons”.
- § 170 of the Internal Revenue Code provides: Charitable contributions to governmental units are tax-deductible under § 170(c)(1) of the Internal Revenue Code if made for a public purpose.
- A public housing authority is not a 501(3)(c) organization.