Farragut to head Howard Council Columbia-area representative will lead body for 1 year.

Councilman Paul Farragut will be named chairman of the Howard County Council tonight.

The current chairman, C. Vernon Gray, today confirmed that Farragut has agreed to serve a one-year term as chairman of the five-member council and that the other members approved of his selection when polled over the weekend.


Farragut, 50, a Democrat, will be formally chosen during a vote at the council's legislative session tonight, which follows an annual dinner of members at an Ellicott City restaurant to discuss new assignments. The decisions have been made and those actions are a formality, Gray said.

Council chairmanships are one-year terms.


"We've rotated," said Gray, D-3rd. "He can do it; he wants to do it. I think he should be afforded the opportunity."

Farragut, who is mild-mannered and by far the least controversial council member, was appointed by the county's Democratic Central Committee to replace the retiring Ruth Keeton in March 1989. He was elected to a full term last November when he defeated Republican Michael Deets in the fourth councilmanic district, which encompasses western Columbia.

As chairman, he will preside over council meetings; set the agenda for public hearings, work sessions and legislative sessions; reply to requests from the county executive and administrators; and act as a spokesman for the council before other groups.

Gray said Shane Pendergrass, D-1st, who preceded Gray as the council chairman, would become vice chairman. Gray said he would chair the zoning board.

The liquor board chairman will be Charles C. Feaga, R-5th, who also will serve as the council's representative to the Maryland Association of Counties. Darrel Drown, R-2nd, will be the representative to the Baltimore Regional Council of Governments.