All statutory references contained herein refer to Maryland Code, Article 49B, unlessotherwise noted.
At the time the present actions commenced, § 42, entitled “Civil actions fordiscriminatory acts – Montgomery County, Prince George’s County, and Howard County,”subsection (a), provided:Authorized.–In Montgomery County, Prince George’s County,and Howard County, in accordance with this subtitle, a personwho is subjected to an act of discrimination prohibited by thecounty code may bring and maintain a civil action against theperson who committed the alleged discriminatory act fordamages, injunctive relief, or other civil relief.Md. Code, Art. 49B, § 42(a) (1957, 2003 Repl. Vol.).In 2009, § 42 was recodified, without substantive changes, as subsections (a) and (b)of § 20-1202 of the State Government Article, entitled “Howard, Montgomery, and PrinceGeorge’s Counties.” Those subsections currently provide:(a) Scope of section.–This section applies only in HowardCounty, Montgomery County, and Prince George’s County.(b) Civil action authorized.–In accordance with this section, aperson that is subjected to a discriminatory act prohibited by thecounty code may bring and maintain a civil action against theperson that committed the alleged discriminatory act fordamages, injunctive relief, or other civil relief.Md. Code, State Gov’t Art., § 20-1202(a)-(b) (1984, 2009 Repl. Vol.). Because § 42(a) wasin effect at the time the present actions were commenced, throughout this opinion we shallrefer to § 42(a) as the governing statute, rather than § 20-1202 of the State GovernmentArticle.The three appeals presently before the Court were argued (and are decided) togetherbecause of a single legal question they share: whether the Washington Suburban SanitaryCommission (hereinafter, “WSSC” or “the Commission”) qualifies as a “person” underMaryland Code, Article 49B,
(hereinafter, § 42(a)), and, therefore, is subject to