MACo has sent a letter to the Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) requesting a meeting with Secretary of the Environment Bob Summers over scope and implementation concerns of proposed regulations that would require the use of best available nitrogen removal technology (BAT) in all new and certain replacement septic systems. In its letter, MACo highlights three areas of concern: (1) the scope of the regulations; (2) the cost of the regulations on county governments; and (3) implementation issues. The Secretary’s office has indicated that the Secretary is willing to meet with MACo during the week of August 19.
The Maryland Conference of Environmental Health Directors, which is the MACo affiliate for county environmental health officers, has also sent a letter to Secretary Summers raising similar concerns. While supportive of the goal to reduce nitrogen runoff from septic systems, the Conference has requested that MDE suspend instituting the BAT regulations until MDE and the Conference can meet and hopefully resolve the Conference’s concerns.
The public comment period for the proposed BAT regulations ends on August 15. Those wishing to submit comments to MDE should be mail, call, email, or fax them to:Mr. Jay Prager Deputy Program Administrator Water Management Administration Maryland Department of the Environment 1800 Washington Boulevard Baltimore, MD 21230-1708 firstname.lastname@example.org (phone) 410.537.3780 (fax) 410.537.3163
Both MACo and the Conference previously submitted written testimony to the Joint Committee on Administrative, Executive, and Legislative Review (AELR) when AELR heard the proposed BAT regulations. Ultimately, AELR voted to approve the proposed regulations.