Tree cutting along water leads to $11,500 fine

Maximum fine was first conviction for state's 'Critical Area' laws

November 18, 2011|By Steve Kilar, The Baltimore Sun

An Severna Park man has been fined $11,500 for cutting trees in the designated shoreline buffer zone without permits or permission, authorities said.

William E. Clark, of the 200 block of Lennox Ave., pleaded guilty to violating Maryland's shoreline development law, according to a Friday statement from the attorney general's office.

In Mary 2010, Clark hired a tree service to remove several trees on his property and land owned by the Olde Severna Park Improvement Association Inc. that abuts his home and a beach area on the Severn River, the statement said.

The fine was the maximum possible for the violations, which included clearing trees in an environmentally restricted area without a permit, not having a sediment control permit and malicious destruction of property.

It was the first conviction under the state's Critical Area Act, which was passed by the General Assembly in 1984 and regulates the use of land within 1,000 feet of the Chesapeake Bay's tidal areas.

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