Press Release - Office of the Governor

Governor Martin O’Malley Signs Legislation to Protect Maryland's Environment; Chesapeake Bay

Bills for Clean Cars, Oyster Restoration Become Law;
O’Malley Builds on Earlier Environmental Initiatives

ANNAPOLIS, MD (April 24, 2007) - Today, Governor Martin O’Malley joined with Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller Jr., House Speaker Michael E. Busch, and Lieutenant Governor Anthony G. Brown to sign legislation to protect and preserve Maryland’s environment for the next generation. Governor O’Malley signed 173 bills into law today, including key environmental legislation to reduce automobile emissions and oyster restoration in the Chesapeake Bay.

“Very early on in the campaign last summer, we came together to announce an Environmental Bill of Rights for the people of our state - understanding that we must do all that we can to preserve our natural resources,” said Governor Martin O’Malley. “I am proud that working together this session we were able to pass legislation to make Maryland a national leader in protecting the environment. With today’s bills, we are reducing greenhouse gases, protecting critical species, and helping to restore the Chesapeake Bay for future generations.”

“This year, the General Assembly passed key legislation to support the environment and expand the beauty of our natural resources,” said Lt. Governor Anthony Brown. “Over the next four years, we look forward to putting these bills into action, and building on these successful measures to protect Maryland’s air, land, and water.”

Governor O’Malley signed a number of environmental initiatives into law today:

In addition, Governor O’Malley signed the Yellow Perch Conservation and Sustainability Act (SB702) to require the Department of Natural Resources to adopt specified regulations relating to yellow perch, and legislation that requires phosphorus to be removed from dishwashing machine detergent by January 1, 2010 (SB766/HB1131). The Governor also signed the Fishery Management Reform Act (SB1012) to strengthen the State Fisheries Management and Protection Fund and establish a task force on fishery management.

Last week, Governor O’Malley brought Maryland into line with ten neighboring states by joining the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative. The Governor also signed an Executive Order that establishes a Climate Change Commission charged with developing an action plan to address climate change in Maryland and rising sea levels in the Chesapeake Bay. Earlier this year, Governor O’Malley signed an Executive Order to establish BayStat, a results-based management program to improve the health of the Chesapeake Bay.

[ listen to MP3 audio statement ]

April 24, 2007