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Weekly News Update, April 17th Edition

Updated: Jul 9, 2020


By Ashley Ellixson

Man milking cows (Photo by Edwin Remsberg).
Man milking cows (Photo by Edwin Remsberg).

Happy Friday everyone! The following is a list of news and updates in the agricultural realm this week for your reading pleasure. Enjoy your weekend!


Revisionary Stormwater Bill (SB 863) Passed. Initially presented as the fulfillment of a campaign promise by Governor Hogan to repeal the state’s so-called “rain tax,” in the end this legislation was supported by the Clean Water, Healthy Families coalition, which includes the following environmental groups: Maryland League of Conservation Voters, Blue Water Baltimore, the Chesapeake Bay Foundation and Sierra Club’s Maryland chapter. SB 863 was originally filed as a repeal of the rain tax, and it does eliminate the mandate for jurisdictions to collect a specific fee under certain conditions by changing the word “will” to “may.” But elsewhere, it changes the word “may” to “will” to require each jurisdiction to establish a fund to pay for efforts to reach the goal, and it changes reporting requirements to increase accountability. It also imposes stiff fines for failing to meet funding requirements. To read the full article click here:


Chesapeake Bay Water Clean-Up Regs Could Flood Midwest Farms: Illinois Soybean Association members toured Maryland and Delaware. The take home was that U.S. EPA’s Chesapeake Bay [water cleanup] model may be headed into the Midwest and could potentially impact all farmland, not just concentrated animal feeding operations. Read more about what they learned at: http://farmprogress.com/story-chesapeake-bay-regs-flood-midwest-farms-8-126108


Leasing Webinar Scheduled: A series of leasing webinars covering landlord-tenant communication, mediation, tools available, setting a rental rate, and leasing laws will be held on May 4 and May 11 from 7pm to 8:30. The webinars are being offered by the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, the Ag Law Education Initiative, Maryland Department of Agriculture, University of Maryland Extension, and Maryland Farmlink. To get more details on the webinars and register, please see:https://arecleasingwebinar.eventbrite.com. For more on ag leasing issues in Maryland, please see the University of Maryland Extension’s webpage dedicated to leasing issues at:http://bit.ly/UMELeasing.