Shifting Stormwater Regulations in Maryland

For Inlet - water drops on branch - crop

Maryland Department of the Environment, et al. v. Anacostia Riverkeeper, et al.

Many MS4 communities within the entire Chesapeake Bay watershed were waiting anxiously on a decision from the Maryland Court of Special Appeals regarding the Maryland Department of the Environment, et al. v. Anacostia Riverkeeper, et al. This suit alleged that the MS4 permit issued by the Maryland Department of the Environment to Montgomery County, Md., violated the Federal Clean Water Act and state of Maryland law – which the court agreed. Read more about the decision at Holland & Knight.

Rain Tax Repealed

In what the Chesapeake Bay Foundation called a “major victory” for combating stormwater runoff pollution in the Chesapeake Bay, the so-called “Rain Tax Repeal” passed in Maryland 138-1. According to the Maryland Reporter, “SB 863, the Watershed Protection and Restoration Program, sponsored by Senate President Mike Miller [allows] counties and municipalities to regulate their own stormwater fee,” and is not a repeal of the stormwater tax, but rather a change in language allowing counties to choose how to comply with federal requirements, whether via a fee or other revenue sources of their choice.   The affected counties include Anne Arundel, Baltimore, Carroll, Charles, Frederick, Harford, Howard, Montgomery, and Prince George, as well as the City of Baltimore. More information about the bill can be found at the Baltimore Sun and Maryland Reporter.