Miller and Busch Say “No” to Stormwater Fee Repeal

A January 16 Baltimore Sun B’More Green blog article reported that the two presiding officers of the Maryland General Assembly gave their strongest assurances to date that they opposed to repealing the 2012 legislation that required 10 counties to adopt a stormwater remediation fee (called the “rain tax” by some of the fees opponents).

The leaders of the Senate and House of Delegates predicted Thursday morning that lawmakers won’t be repealing the stormwater fees in the state’s largest jurisdictions this year.

At a breakfast hosted by the Annapolis and Anne Arundel County Chamber of Commerce, Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller Jr. responded to a question about whether the fees would be repealed by saying flatly: “We’re not going to repeal the stormwater fee.”

House Speaker Michael E. Busch then quickly piped up: “Second!”

While both presiding officers were clear in their intentions regarding a repeal, President Miller has previously raised concerns about the fee being applied consistently across different counties and its burden on nonprofit and religious organizations.  MACo believes that all of the affected counties went through an intensive and challenging process to establish their fees or alternative stormwater funding mechanisms and some of those counties have expressed concern about being forced to reopen that process.