Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Whether you are new to the neighborhood, or a long-time resident, we hope the following information will be useful for you!

How do I become a member of HSIA?

HSIA Membership information and forms are found here.

How do I get an automobile decal?

Something all residents need to access and enjoy our fine amenities is an automobile decal, free & issued annually by the HSIA. A current decal is required to access the beach and marina parking lots. While there is NO FEE for an automobile decal, all residents (owners & renters) are required to present documentation for each decal requested.

In order to obtain stickers, please photo copy your current vehicle registration(s) (one (1) registration for each sticker request), complete an HSIA Membership form (even if you are not paying dues!), and mail to HSIA, P.O. Box 3485, Annapolis, MD 21403. You may black out all information except Tag Number, Make/Model, Expiration Date, Name, and Address.  We will send you one (1) sticker for each one (1) photocopied, current vehicle/trailer registration submitted. All registrations are required to show a Hillsmere address.  If you have just moved in, and your vehicle registrations do not yet match your Hillsmere address, please include a note that you are a new resident and we will waive the photo copied registration requirement for your first sticker request.  Please make sure you indicate on the Membership form how many stickers are needed.

All residents (owners and renters) have the opportunity to pick up decals in person at the annual “Come And Get it Day” held by HSIA every February. This annual event is announced via newsletter, website and email distribution lists. To sign up for the free, monthly newsletter, please visit the Sea Breeze page. To receive notice of all new posts on our website, sign up here. To join email distribution lists, sign up here (scroll down, in right side bar).

What day of the week is trash & recycling collected?

Trash, Recycling and Yard Waste are picked up on Tuesdays. Need another recycling bin? Not sure how to bundle your yard waste? Visit AACo DPW for more information.

How do I get the Sea Breeze?

Never miss another issue! Find out how to receive the newsletter, and view archived issues here.

How do I join the pool?

Best. Summer. Ever. Join the Pool!

How do I sign up for the community emails?

Sign up here.

How do I request a slip at the marina?

Let’s find a home for your boat. More information here.

How do I obtain a guest pass for the marina or beach?

Any resident can request a guest pass (good for a range of dates) when family or friends are visiting.

How to apply for a Guest Pass

  1. Call the HSIA Administrative Officer @ 410-263-4456 or email [email protected] with the following information:
    a) Your full name
    b) Your full address
    c) The date(s) the pass is needed
  2. Display the issued pass by hanging it on the rear view mirror of the guest vehicle while using all Hillsmere Shores facilities.

Hillsmere Shores Improvement Association appreciates your cooperation, and wishes you and your guests a most enjoyable time.

How do I get a key for boat ramp?

Complete a membership form and mail it with your dues and boat ramp key payment. Be sure to remember to include photo copies of your vehicle and trailer registrations for stickers. Keys are not available on short notice.  Please allow a few weeks processing time.

When is a building permit required?

Are you having work done at your property?  Did you know that an HSIA Building Permit is required every time an Anne Arundel County Building Permit is issued for any work done at your property?  The responsibility of obtaining an HSIA Building Permit falls on the owner, not the contractor.  As of 1/1/2018, the fee for a HSIA Building Permit has increased to $25; $50 if the work has already begun and you failed to apply for an HSIA Building Permit.  The following items are required to obtain an HSIA Building Permit:

  1. A copy of the Anne Arundel County Building Permit.*
  2. A TO SCALE copy of the site plan.*
  3. A TO SCALE copy of the plans and elevations of the structure(s).*
  4. Cash or check in the amount of $25 made payable to HSIA, or $50 if work has already begun without a Hillsmere Building Permit.
  5. Mail payment and all required documents to HSIA, PO BOX 3485, Annapolis MD 21403
  6. Current mailing address, if different from permit address. Hillsmere permit will be mailed via USPS.


Per our Deeds & Covenants, HSIA’s sideline setbacks (15′) are different from the County (7′), so we encourage anyone having work done at their property to reach out to the HSIA Building Permit Chair, before designing your structure or applying to the County. Failure to obtain a Hillsmere Building Permit prior to the start of construction will result in a Stop Work Order and, at a minimum, an increase in the cost of the permit. You may reach the Hillsmere Building Permit chairperson via email, [email protected] or by calling 410-263-4456 (HSIA 24-hour voice mailbox) and leaving a message.

Contact the Permit Committee with questions. Visit AACo Permit Center for additional information.

What is a Special Community Tax District?

Anne Arundel County designated Hillsmere Shores (aka Hillsmere Estates) a Special Benefit District in June 1965 ( County Code, § 4-7-204[ff] ) .  This means that homeowners in our community pay an additional tax, administered by the County, that provides the funds needed to maintain Community-owned property. The HSIA Board of Directors is responsible for working within the County’s guidelines to spend the money collected for the purpose of construction, maintenance, and repair of, and snow removal from, non-County-owned roads, streets, alleys, sidewalks, curbs, street or road signs, street or road lights, bulkheads, drainage ditches, and culverts; maintenance of community areas; acquisition, development, improvement, and maintenance of community real and personal property; establishment and operation of a community security program; and covering the administrative expenses incidental to carrying out these purposes, including postage and mailing, auditing, insurance, and legal costs.

Each year the HSIA Board of Directors creates a budget for the coming year and sets the tax rate for the SCBD based on anticipated needs. The Special Tax Budget is sent via postal mail to all Hillsmere Shores property owners, published in the Jan/Feb newsletter, and is available online. In brief:

  • HSIA can request the County to levy a tax on Hillsmere Shores residents for spending on activities, improvements, maintenance, security, etc. that benefit the entire community.
  • County law regulates what the money raised from the SCBD tax can be spent on.
  • SCBD tax money cannot be spent on items that benefit only part of the community. For example, no Special Tax monies can be spent for Piers and Harbor boat slips or to build canoe racks or dingy racks. 
  • HSIA does not levy the tax. HSIA is not empowered by the residents of Hillsmere Shores to levy a tax. If HSIA was a Homeowners Association, it could do that.  
  • Anne Arundel County levies the tax. Once HSIA requests the County to impose the tax, the County can change the amount or not levy the tax at all.   
  • The tax is levied per lot unless for some reason, the property is tax exempt.
  • The tax is mandatory.
  • The tax is paid by the property owners at the time they pay their normal property tax.

Further reading: Anne Arundel County’s Finance Dept. Special District Taxing Guidelines

What is the difference between an Improvement Association vs. Home Owners Association?

Home Owners Association vs Home Improvement Association

When does the Board of Directors meet? When are General Meetings?

Schedule of Meetings

How do I reserve the beach for a private party?

We now have a Beach Calendar for you to view when planning your next event at the beach! Visit Reserve the Beach for details. 

How do I report a lost/found pet?

Visit AACo Animal Control to report a lost pet, reclaim a pet and view lost pet listings.

Are residents allowed to use the Community Message Board?

Yes, residents are allowed to use the message board for personal announcements (ex: birthdays, welcome home, yard sale, lost & found, etc.). When posting signage, please do not use nails or screws. Signage may be attached with push pins, tacks and/or 1/2″ or smaller staples. Please remove your signage within a few days. Please be aware that all HSIA-related signs have priority. Please note: no commercial advertising is allowed! 

What is the snow removal procedure in Hillsmere?

AACo DPW handles snow removal in Hillsmere Shores. For snow removal information, review AACo Snow Removal FAQs . To request service, visit AACo Snow Removal site.

How do I contact Security?

Please, CALL POLICE FIRST in all emergencies, before contacting security. AACo Police non-emergency number is 410-222-8610. Call 911 for all emergencies. Hillsmere security can be reached at 410-263-4456, or [email protected]

If you still have questions, please email us or call our 24-hour voice mail, 410-263-4456. The HSIA voice mail system is available for all residents as a means of communication between residents and members of the community association. When leaving a message, include your name, phone number, and a brief message. We will talk to you soon!