Septics Legislation Introduced, Governor Defends Proposed Policy

At a Monday press event to mark the introduction of the Governor’s initiative on septic systems, The Baltimore Sun reports that “The governor said he wanted to end a ‘proliferation’ of new housing on septic systems.”

The Sun describes the major bill provisions:

The bill would require any housing project of five or more homes to either hook up to a public sewer system or be served by a shared waste treatment system that is approved and monitored by local and state government. Smaller developments or individual homes could still be built on septic, but would have to use higher-quality systems that remove more nitrogen — and which cost about $12,000 more than a standard septic system.

The Governor’s surprise announcement of this policy priority at the State of the State address came too late for the formal introduction of Administration-sponsored legislation, so this proposal will have private sponsors. Delegate Steven Lafferty, a speaker on growth issues at MACo’s recent winter conference, has introduced HB 1107, and Senator Paul Pinsky has introduced the cross-filed SB 846.

Read the full bill text here.

The pair of bills are likely to be before the MACo Legislative Committee for consideration at its February 23 meeting.

Michael Sanderson

Executive Director Maryland Association of Counties

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