Governor Larry Hogan Elected Chair of Chesapeake Executive Council
Signs Resolution Affirming Maryland’s Commitment to Bay Restoration, Calling for Continued Federal Funding
ANNAPOLIS, MD – Governor Larry Hogan today hosted the 2017 annual meeting of the Chesapeake Executive Council of the Chesapeake Bay Program, where he was elected to serve as the council’s new chair, succeeding Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe, who has been chair since January 1, 2015. In addition to Governors Hogan and McAuliffe, the meeting included representatives from Delaware, New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, the District of Columbia, the Chesapeake Bay Commission, and the federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
“As a lifelong Marylander who has always had a love for the Chesapeake Bay, as a governor, and now as the chairman of this Chesapeake Executive Council, I will remain passionately committed to this cause,” said Governor Hogan. “As we all look ahead, I believe that successful Bay restoration must include innovative financing, transparent public-private partnerships, and market-based solutions that drive costs down and promote new technologies.”
During the meeting, the council members signed a resolution supporting the Chesapeake Bay Program partnership and advocating for continued federal funding to restore and preserve the region’s most precious natural resource. The resolution calls upon the President and the United States Congress to continue the current level of federal support for the Chesapeake Bay Program and the participating partners for the restoration of the Bay. It also calls for science, monitoring, modeling, and restoration to continue with the full participation of local, state, and federal agencies and private sector entities as appropriate.
“It will take all of the Bay jurisdictions and our federal partners working together to continue our progress. That’s why today, I was pleased to sign this resolution,” continued the governor. “We remain committed to taking further action to protect the Bay and our environment, and I am committed to fighting to protect federal Bay funding and continuing our historic investments in Maryland’s most precious natural asset.”
Under Governor Hogan’s stewardship, Maryland has invested an unprecedented $3 billion in Bay restoration efforts. He is the first governor in Maryland history to fully fund the Chesapeake and Atlantic Coastal Bays Trust Fund in the administration’s last two budgets. After years of raids by the previous administration, the Hogan administration has also fully funded Program Open Space, the state’s premier land conservation and recreation program, and the governor has pledged to restore raided funds.
Addressing the meeting, the governor detailed his success bringing farmers, community leaders, poultry industry representatives and environmental groups together to develop compromise Phosphorous Management Tool (PMT) regulations, one of the most significant initiatives to clean up the Bay in a generation. He also discussed plans to convene a second Conowingo Dam Summit this summer to bring together scientists, local and regional leaders and environmental regulators to address the critical problem of sediment flowing from the Susquehanna River over the dam and into the Bay.
Finally, Governor Hogan announced that the Maryland Department of Natural Resources has awarded grant funding to 18 recipients through the Chesapeake and Atlantic Coastal Bays Trust Fund to improve the health of Maryland’s waterways. He also renewed Maryland’s commitment to environmental education by signing Executive Order 01.01.2017.12, establishing Project Green Classrooms, an initiative to promote outdoor experiential activities and environmental education through Maryland’s schools, communities and public lands.