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NEWS
October 13, 2012
A recent Sun editorial, "Free pass for Md. polluters?," (Sept. 27) did not take into account all of the ways that Maryland enforces water pollution violations. Criminal prosecution is just one tool that we employ to protect public health and the environment in Maryland. Administrative and civil authority is often the more effective route to achieve compliance with environmental laws due to the high bar set by the courts for criminal enforcement. The majority of Maryland businesses and citizens comply with environmental laws, but a strong and fair enforcement program is essential to protect our investment in the environment as well as the health and quality of life of all Maryland residents.
ARTICLES BY DATE
NEWS
By Timothy B. Wheeler, The Baltimore Sun | May 17, 2014
A 30-second TV spot by Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler touts his record enforcing environmental laws, vowing that if he's elected governor he'll continue to fight for clean air and a clean Chesapeake Bay. What the ad says : The spot opens with Gansler standing in front of a pair of smokestacks. He says as attorney general, he has forced utilities to install more than $4 billion in pollution controls. He then says he wants to "take on polluters" to save the bay and contends that Maryland currently "protects" companies that dump waste into the bay, keeping their identities secret. "Polluters bought that loophole," he says, and vows as governor to take them on. The facts: The ad overstates Gansler's role in getting the pollution controls.
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NEWS
By Ariel Sabar and Ariel Sabar,SUN STAFF | January 19, 2003
Pentagon officials say they will return to Capitol Hill this year to seek legislation exempting the military from key environmental laws. The military will renew arguments that laws protecting the air, endangered species and public health are hurting its ability to train troops for combat. Last year, a skeptical Congress rejected all but one of the nine proposed exemptions. But with Republicans in charge of both houses of Congress and the White House, the Pentagon is expected to have an easier time making its case.
NEWS
By Karla Raettig | May 9, 2013
When first proposed about a decade ago, it seemed like a promising means to revive the Chesapeake Bay's devastated oyster crop: Bring in Chinese oysters, which are impervious to the diseases killing the native stock and also grow faster. If successful, the plan would resurrect an oyster industry that was nearly wiped out as the native oyster population dwindled to barely 1 percent of what it was decades ago. But under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), a major step such as introducing an alien species into an ecosystem requires a thorough environmental review by the federal government.
NEWS
By Carol Emert and Carol Emert,States News Service | December 16, 1992
WASHINGTON -- Federal employees who "blow the whistle" on environmental wrongdoers can get better protection and more financial awards than whistle-blowers who have witnessed other types of violations.Few people know about the alternative legal system for environmental whistle-blowers, said Steve Kohn, an attorney with the National Whistleblower Center in Washington. "But when they're used -- and I've reviewed every case that's ever been issued under these laws -- they can be effective."While most federal whistle-blowing cases are conducted under civil service laws, a special procedure is outlined in six environmental laws, including statutes involving clean air, clean water and Superfund sites.
NEWS
By Timothy B. Wheeler and Timothy B. Wheeler,SUN STAFF | June 27, 1996
James J. Wilson hardly looks like a felon.But the white-haired, 63-year-old real estate developer, chairman of Interstate General Co., has a date to report to federal prison in Cumberland in August. He and the companies he controls were convicted of illegally filling about 70 acres of wetlands in Charles County, where they are developing a Columbia-style planned community near Waldorf.Wilson, sentenced last week to 21 months in prison by a federal judge in Greenbelt, joins a growing number of people and businesses that have gotten a criminal record for violating environmental laws.
NEWS
By Ariel Sabar and Ariel Sabar,SUN STAFF | January 22, 2003
Key members of Maryland's congressional delegation expressed skepticism and outright opposition yesterday to the Pentagon's efforts to exempt military training from a raft of environmental laws. Sens. Barbara A. Mikulski and Paul S. Sarbanes, both Democrats, said a recent series of articles in The Sun underscored the urgency of fully funding cleanup programs and of holding the military to the same environmental standards as industrial polluters. "Parents shouldn't have to worry about chemicals leaking into their drinking water or what their kids might find while playing in the back yard," Mikulski said.
NEWS
By Sheridan Lyons and Sheridan Lyons,SUN STAFF | June 2, 2004
The Carroll County commissioners approved three environmental measures yesterday, including the creation of an Environmental Advisory Council and the new position of flood-plain management specialist. They also voted to have Jim Slater, the county's deputy director of environment and resource protection programs, consider requests for variances from environmental laws. Planning Director Steven C. Horn said the variances might be needed when strict adherence to state or local technical requirements would run counter to the intent of environmental laws.
NEWS
August 12, 2007
We must remain stewards of the bay While reading about the fight over a 200-foot pier to be built off Dobbins Island (The Sun, Aug. 5) I learned that I had missed something on the crucial environment vs. development front. Sometime back, I learned of Daryl C. Wagner's beautiful home on Little Island on the Magothy River. I didn't read about it in Better Homes & Gardens or some other publication about beautiful homes. Rather I heard about it when WBAL-TV did a story about how Mr. Wagner, without applying for critical zoning variances, tore down a small cottage and constructed this home.
NEWS
By New York Times News Service | April 17, 1995
WASHINGTON -- The environmental movement's most concerted campaign in a generation is about to get under way as environmental groups around the country work to make the 25th anniversary of Earth Day spark a rebellion against a broad rollback of environmental legislation.Trying to influence lawmakers of both parties as they meet with constituents during the congressional recess, the groups are reviving all the usual organizing tools of a movement that came of age in 1970.They are also using new lobbying tactics that evolved after the first Earth Day, when millions of people took to the streets and helped persuade Congress to pass dozens of environmental laws in the ensuing decades.
NEWS
Dan Rodricks | March 23, 2013
Nobody asked me, but here are my six recommendations in the matter of the highly publicized, closely watched, widely criticized, rift-causing lawsuit brought by the Waterkeeper Alliance against the Hudson family poultry farm over alleged pollution in a tributary of the Chesapeake Bay on Maryland's Eastern Shore: •Everybody calm down, starting with the Maryland General Assembly. Already, the House of Delegates has authorized $300,000 — taxpayer dollars — for the legal fees of Alan Hudson, the farmer.
NEWS
October 13, 2012
A recent Sun editorial, "Free pass for Md. polluters?," (Sept. 27) did not take into account all of the ways that Maryland enforces water pollution violations. Criminal prosecution is just one tool that we employ to protect public health and the environment in Maryland. Administrative and civil authority is often the more effective route to achieve compliance with environmental laws due to the high bar set by the courts for criminal enforcement. The majority of Maryland businesses and citizens comply with environmental laws, but a strong and fair enforcement program is essential to protect our investment in the environment as well as the health and quality of life of all Maryland residents.
FEATURES
Tim Wheeler | September 21, 2012
Would putting more polluters behind bars help restore the Chesapeake Bay? The Center for Progressive Reform believes it would. In a new report, the  a pro-regulatory think tank argues that both state and federal authorities prosecute water polluters too rarely in Maryland and that the state penalties for conviction aren't stiff enough to deter violators. Criminal prosecutions are an effective way to improve enforcement of environmental laws, especially when government regulators lack the funds to adequately inspect all potential polluters, says Rena Steinzor, the center's president and a professor at the University of Maryland's law school.
NEWS
Dan Rodricks | August 25, 2012
The message arrived last month with something like the urgency of a gold strike: Native brook trout, lots of them, discovered in the twin ditch creeks of an old farm in Hereford, in northern Baltimore County. Environmental scientists get pretty excited about this sort of thing. They found brown trout, too, and other smaller fish that a kid splashing around in summer might call minnows: sculpins, black-nosed dace and rosy-sided dace. Signs of life, to be sure, but more than that — signs of a delicate species' survival in a stream degraded for decades by the practices of men trying to earn a living off the land.
NEWS
By James L. Huffman | April 12, 2012
Maryland state Sen. Richard Colburn is fed up with the University of Maryland Environmental Law Clinic's lawsuit against a local chicken farm. But rather than try to shut the clinic down, Mr. Colburn introduced legislation to transfer $500,000 in funding from the University of Maryland to the University of Baltimore for the purpose of establishing an agricultural law clinic "dedicated to assisting farmers in the state with estates and trusts issues,...
NEWS
Dan Rodricks | December 3, 2011
Nobody asked me, but I'm betting - and hoping - that 85-year-old Roscoe Bartlett, Buckeystown's most durable Republican, will seek re-election in the reconfigured 6th Congressional District. There's been a lot of buzz about this lately, with political gossips saying Mr. Bartlett is doomed, and with numerous Republicans and Democrats lining up to run in the 2012 primaries. A political blogger reported that Mr. Bartlett's chief of staff, Bud Otis, has been exploring a run. Mr. Bartlett apparently hasn't been raising much money for a re-election bid, either.
NEWS
By Timothy B. Wheeler and Timothy B. Wheeler,SUN STAFF | December 5, 1997
CLARIFICATIONAn article in yesterday's editions of The Sun noted that Jane F. Barrett, a former assistant U.S. attorney, had a small figure of a barracuda in her office. The figure was not given to her by a federal judge but by an FBI agent.The "Barracuda" has bitten her last criminal. After 21 years of preying on polluters, poachers, con artists and wetlands despoilers, Jane F. Barrett leaves the U.S. attorney's office in Baltimore today to swim on the other side.Looking for a new challenge -- and extra income to finance her son's looming college education -- the veteran federal prosecutor is joining a Washington law firm.
NEWS
July 31, 2011
The Constitution says the legislative branch of government makes the laws and the executive branch implements and administers them. While the tea party wing of the Republican party was holding the country hostage and taking us on a suicidal dive, no one noticed they were also turning our Constitutional principle of separation of powers on its head by using an appropriations bill to subvert legislative intent and roll back environmental protections....
FEATURES
By Timothy B. Wheeler, The Baltimore Sun | November 24, 2011
Thelma Boyd and her Cheverly-area neighbors were at their wits' end when they connected with the University of Maryland's environmental law clinic. She and other residents of distressed, predominantly black neighborhoods on the outskirts of Washington had tried in vain to get local officials to keep a concrete plant from being built in their midst. Fearing a potential health threat, they felt their only recourse was to go to court but couldn't find a lawyer to take their case. "That's not the kind of case people will take," said Boyd, 87, who's lived there 56 years.
NEWS
July 31, 2011
The Constitution says the legislative branch of government makes the laws and the executive branch implements and administers them. While the tea party wing of the Republican party was holding the country hostage and taking us on a suicidal dive, no one noticed they were also turning our Constitutional principle of separation of powers on its head by using an appropriations bill to subvert legislative intent and roll back environmental protections....
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