Clean Chesapeake Coalition Adds Queen Anne's County - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Clean Chesapeake Coalition Adds Queen Anne's County

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Queen Anne's County, Md.- Queen Anne's County is the newest member of The Clean Chesapeake Coalition. During a meeting on August 26, the Queen Anne's County Board of Commissioners approved to allocate $25,000 to join the coalition. In the three to two vote, Commissioners David Dunmyer and Bob Simmons voted against joining the Coalition while Commissioners Philip Dumenil, James Moran, and Dave Olds vote in favor of joining.

The coalition is comprised of elected officials from ten counties, and aims to pursue water quality improvement of the Chesapeake Bay. The coalition said it uses research, coordination and advocacy to advance its goal of water quality improvement.

The other counties already involved include Allegany, Caroline, Carroll, Cecil, Dorchester, Frederick, Harford, Kent and Wicomico. The coalition's member jurisdictions now make-up over 40% of the state's total land area, and more than 40% of the state's shoreline.

According to Clean Chesapeake Coalition's Chairman, Queen Anne's county will provide valuable insight to the group. Chairman Ronald Fithian said, “As a county with considerable shoreline, Queen Anne's knows first-hand the environmental and economic implications that have resulted from an impaired Chesapeake Bay.”

The coalition said adding Queen Anne's County to the group will add to the growing number of Maryland local governments that are bringing attention to the current federal relicensing process of the Conowingo Dam.

The County's Commission President, Philip Dumenil, acknowledged the coalition's efforts regarding the Conowingo Dam as well. He said, “The Clean Chesapeake Coalition and its members have done an outstanding job in educating the public about the problems that result from the Conowingo Dam and the need to clean it up.”

Commissioner Dave Olds added, “It was my honor to finally get this done. Thanks for your constant reinforcement and a special thanks to George O'Donnell for guiding me through this process. Good luck to the coalition.”

While the vote passed the Board of Commissioners, there is a caveat. Commissioner Moran, who supported the measure, amended the motion during the voting discussion. He suggested the county join the Coalition only to support the efforts surrounding the Conowingo Dam, and that joining would not jeopardize local TMDL or WIP programs.

That amendment was in reference to the limits set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Those limits regard the amount of nutrients and sediments that can enter the Chesapeake Bay. In addition to setting these limits, known as Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDLs), EPA requires the Bay states to develop statewide Phase I Watershed Implementation Plans (WIP).

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