On February 23, 2023, Associate Policy Director Dominic Butchko testified before the Senate Education, Energy, and the Environment Committee in support of SB 813 – Comprehensive Flood Management Grant Program – Environmental Justice Funding.
The House Environment and Transportation Committee will consider the bill’s cross-file, HB 892, on March 9.
SB 813 requires that at least 40% of funding provided under the comprehensive flood management grant program be reserved for projects in areas with disadvantaged communities facing heightened pollution exposure. The bill also requires the State to reserve an appropriation of $20 million for the comprehensive flood management grant program beginning in fiscal year 2025. Counties wholeheartedly support this effort to protect Maryland’s most vulnerable communities from the dangers of extreme weather events, and welcome the additional resources to undertake flood management and mitigaiton efforts more generally.
From the MACo Testimony:
SB 813 expands the Comprehensive Flood Management Grant Program by increasing funding to $20 million, and requires that at least forty percent of those funds go toward certain communities with high environmental justice concerns. This critical program provides local governments with additional resources to prevent flooding and mitigate against some of the worst impacts of climate change. Without increased state-level investment in flood mitigation or prevention, many of the costs of associated with these projects will be borne by local governments, potentially overburdening the scale suitable for local remediation ability.
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