Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley’s administration is expected to propose legislation this week amending the state’s 25-year-old Critical Area Law to further restrict development along the Chesapeake Bay.
Environmentalists say violators are rarely fined, and the penalties are too small to have a significant deterrent effect.
The activists hope the changes will give the state more power to protect coastal areas and impose stiffer penalties for violations. They’re also hoping to make it more difficult for property owners to be granted exceptions to the law.
The push to change the law will likely be opposed by homebuilders, waterfront homeowners, local governments and some lawmakers. State Sen. Lowell Stoltzfus, an Eastern Shore Republican, says it’s his impression the current law is working.
Information from: The (Baltimore) Sun,
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