Environment

Mary-Dulany James grew up on a farm on the Chesapeake Bay, where she has remained to raise her three children.  With a past deeply rooted in the tradition of her family farm, Mary-Dulany has a passion for the conservation and protection of our precious natural resources, such as the Chesapeake Bay and Susquehanna River both integral to the lifestyle and economy of Harford County.

Mary-Dulany’s commitment to the environment and the preservation of Maryland’s agricultural heritage has been on display since she first set foot in Annapolis.  In her very first year in office, Mary-Dulany sponsored a bill that made it easier for landowners to submit applications to the Maryland Agricultural Land Preservation Foundation, a program started by her late father, Senator William S. James.  The purpose of the Foundation is to preserve productive agricultural lands and limit the extent and impact of urban development.

In 2002, Mary-Dulany James spearheaded an effort to increase land preservation by sponsoring a bill that authorized local governments to adopt and implement their own local land preservation programs.  The goal of this legislation was to conserve and improve the quality of the waters throughout the state, as well as to improve the health of the Chesapeake Bay and aid in the protection of the Bay’s watershed and ecosystem.

In 2007, Mary-Dulany helped pass a bill establishing the Chesapeake and Atlantic Coastal Bays Trust Fund.  The Trust fund is intended to maximize the efficiency of the Bay restoration process by focusing the funds on the most effective means of pollution control.  Additionally, the Fund helps the economy by creating numerous green jobs associated with the Bay restoration project.  The Fund also provides financial assistance in the development of new, more efficient technologies that can be used to accelerate the restoration effort.

In 2009, Mary-Dulany submitted and successfully passed legislation that allowed for the sale of state bonds to protect and sustain the nationally recognized Program Open Space, another program created by her father.  Funds from Program Open Space go towards the purchase of land to prevent the development of protected areas. These areas are then used for recreational purposes, as well as the conservation and preservation of wildlife and land resources.

Mary-Dulany James also made monumental strides for the environmental health of the Bay in 2009 by supporting the passage of legislation requiring the installation of new or replacement septic systems throughout locally designated Priority Funding Areas in critical condition to include new nitrogen removal systems.  In conjunction with the $130 million designated for nutrient removal through the Bay Restoration Fund, the accomplishments of 2009 alone show Mary-Dulany’s deep commitment to maintaining the beauty and integrity of the Maryland landscape.

As your Senator, Mary-Dulany James will work to ensure that the Susquehanna River Compact in coordination with Pennsylvania, New York, and Virginia is fully funded; and fight to improve and modernize sewer systems to not only increase the quality of life for families across Maryland, but also prevent future pollution issues and mitigate the need for cleanup efforts.

Below is a partial list of additional preservation and environmental protection bills that Mary-Dulany James has supported;

  • 2004

    • Co-sponsored creation of Young Farmers Advisory Board

      • Within MDA to show importance of agriculture and provide education

  • 2005

    • Surface Mining – Require county approval before submission for State approval

  • 2006

    • Co-sponsored the establishment of the Rural Maryland Prosperity Investment Fund, which is intended to raise the overall standard of  living in rural areas while preserving pastoral heritage and rural way of life.

  • 2007

    • Chesapeake and Atlantic Coastal Bays Green Fund

    • Horn Point Oyster Production

    • Bay Restoration Fund – Wastewater Treatment Facility Reporting Requirements

      • Provides oversight to ensure funds are being used in the proper way, which is to upgrade facilities and improve health of the Bay

  • 2009

    • Required new septic systems and nitrogen removal systems to protect the bay

      • $130M designated to help with nutrient removal through Bay restoration fund

  • 2010

    • Chesapeake Bay 2010 Trust Fund

    • Critical Areas Law Reform