The county commissioners appointed yesterday Robert A. "Max" Bair as Carroll's new zoning administrator.
Bair, an executive assistant to the commissioners, had been acting zoning administrator since Jan. 18.
He was one of 17 applicants for the post, but was not the candidate favored by the county planning commission.
The planning panel voted 3-1 to recommend Claude Rash, one of three brothers who won county approval last year to rezone their Woodbine farm for a golf course community.
"Max has been employed by the county for nearly 30 years and is very familiar with zoning procedures," said planning commission Chairwoman Deborah L. Ridgely, who added she was not surprised by his appointment.
Sources close to the commissioners said the three-member board appointed Bair in part because they wanted to avoid any political backlash that Rash's appointment might have caused.
The commissioners' 2-1 decision to rezone 145 acres of the Rash farm prompted a warning from Gov. Parris N. Glendening that Carroll's requests for well permits and road and school construction money would receive a cool reception from the state.
The governor was opposed to the golf course development because it violates his Smart Growth legislation to curb sprawl.