MACo Chesapeake Checkpoint Symposium Draws Crowd From Across State

Nearly 70 people attended MACo’s Chesapeake Checkpoint Symposium on June 24, 2015, to hear updates about the Chesapeake Bay Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) and discuss issues around the Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) permits  and nutrient and sediment pollution from the Susquehanna River/Conowingo Dam.  Attendees included Maryland Delegate Stephen Lafferty, Secretary of Planning David Craig, and county elected officials and personnel from as far west as Allegany County and as far east as Somerset and Wicomico Counties.

20150624_132826_resized

Audience members listen to a federal and state update on the status of the Bay TMDL (Click on photo to enlarge)

Speakers included Secretary of the Environment Benjamin Grumbles, Secretary of Natural Resources Mark Belton, and representatives from the United States Environmental Protection Agency, Harry R. Hughes Center for Agro-Ecology, Chesapeake Bay Foundation, Maryland State Builders Association, Maryland Farm Bureau, Clean Chesapeake Coalition, American Rivers, Exelon, AquaLaw, and Anne Arundel, Montgomery, and Cecil Counties.  The Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments helped moderate the MS4 discussion panel.

20150624_103936_resized

Anne Arundel Council Member Chris Trumbauer (standing in white shirt) provides welcoming remarks at the start of the symposium (Click on photo to enlarge)

Secretary Grumbles reiterated his desire to work collaboratively with county governments to allow for the most cost effective and flexible solutions possible to meet TMDL goals.  He also announced that the Department of the Environment would be resuming their work on establishing an Accounting for Growth policy, which is required as part of Maryland’s Watershed Implementation Plan.  Secretary Belton discussed the work of the Department of Natural Resources in establishing management strategies and implementation plans to meet the larger water quality and habitat goals found in the 2014 Bay watershed agreement.

Each attending county also provided a brief update of their TMDL progress and challenges during the lunch break. At the breakout session for MS4 counties, participants created a list of seven MS4 issues that MACo and the counties plan to present to Secretary Grumbles in July.

Anne Arundel County Department of Parks and Recreation hosted the symposium at Quiet Waters park and Funk & Bolton PA and the Local Government Insurance Trust were sponsors of the event.

For further information, please contact Les Knapp at 410.269.0043 or lknapp@mdcounties.org.

Close Menu
%d bloggers like this: