As previously reported on Conduit Street, the Senate Education, Health, and Environmental Affairs Committee is reporting out the Administration’s septic system bill with amendments that do not address the concerns raised by MACo. MACo will oppose the reported Senate version and argue for amendments on the bill.
MACo’s concerns with the bill fall into six general areas:
- Approval of residential subdivision plats and lot/street lines by the Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE)
- Approval of the new land use “tiers” by MDE and the Maryland Department of Planning (MDP)
- Definition and criteria for the tiers
- Definition of “major” and “minor” subdivision for purposes of the bill
- Future nutrient offset requirements or use of best available nitrogen-reducing technology (BAT) for septic systems should be subject to General Assembly review and approval
- Grandfathering of projects currently in the development pipeline
MACo has prepared a summary sheet that further describes its six areas of concerns. MACo will continue to work with both proponents and opponents of the bill to have our concerns addressed. The House version of the bill has been held in the Environmental Matters Committee, pending what happens in the Senate. If a bill does pass over, the House will likely work off of the Senate bill and Environmental Matters Committee Chair Maggie McIntosh has formed a workgroup to consider bill changes and amendments.