As the Maryland General Assembly meets to debate new, stricter regulations on Chesapeake Bay waterfront development, Maryland Public Television (MPT) will air a new program that examines Maryland’s Critical Area Law.
"Weary Shoreline," a documentary about the failure to enforce Maryland's Critical Area law, airs at 9 p.m. Wednesday night. For a preview of the show, check out Tim Wheeler's post on the Baltimore Sun's News & Environment blog.
One prime example of the Critical Area law's "death by one thousand cuts" is back in the news. Just last week, David Clickner, owner of Dobbins Island, resurrected plans to build a 4,500-square-foot home, septic system, and road on the island--plans which violate Maryland's Critical Area law but which Clickner has received variance approvals for from the state.
Fervent discussion over HB 1253—set for General Assembly debate February 28 (the day after Weary Shoreline’s premiere)—is expected. Among several proposed changes to this controversial law, the bill mandates that new development (including houses, outbuildings, decks, patios, driveways, landscaping and swimming pools) be even farther away from the bay shoreline than the current 100 feet. Instead, the inner Critical Areas shoreline buffer would be expanded from 100 feet to 300 feet.