(A)   (1)   For the purpose of this section, the following definitions shall apply unless the context clearly indicates or requires a different meaning.
         LOCAL FIRM. A business entity that has its principal office in Garrett County or maintains an active business in Garrett County as defined and evidenced by criteria set by the County Commissioners by ordinance or resolution.
         NONRESIDENT FIRM. A business entity that is not a local firm.
   (B)   The County Commissioners may establish by ordinance or resolution a local preference program applicable to contracts awarded by the county by competitive bids in accordance with this section.
   (C)   (1)   Under a local preference program established under this section, if the state or the political subdivision in which a nonresident firm is located gives an advantage to its resident businesses, the County Commissioners may give an identical advantage to the lowest responsive and responsible bid from a local firm over that of the nonresident firm.
      (2)   An advantage may include:
         (a)   A percentage preference;
         (b)   An employee residency requirement; or
         (c)   Any other provision that favors a local firm over a nonresident firm.
   (D)   An ordinance or resolution adopted under this section may reserve to the County Commissioners the right to provide in a solicitation for competitive bids that a local preference is not available under the contract.
   (E)   A local preference is not available under any contract if the County Commissioners determine that the preference would be inconsistent with the provisions of any applicable federal or state grant or program.
(1986 Code, § 20-14.1)  (1997, Ch. 589)