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Legislative Session Opens; Environmental Legislation Gets Governor’s Support
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by Jan Graham | 2007

Governor embraces an environmental agenda as legislators return to Annapolis.

This is a “new day” for our legislative agenda! Governor O’Malley stated in his acceptance of our endorsement, “Today Tony and I are proud to officially join in partnership with the Sierra Club to create a better, stronger Maryland for our children.” He continued, “It’s time for a governor that works for our environment instead of special interest polluters.” The opportunity is here and it is up to us as Sierrans to see that we make full use of our partnership with Governor O’Malley. To this end, the legislative committee chose as our Maryland chapter priorities: clean cars, energy efficiency (several bills), Program Open Space, wildlands, and all issues having to do with global warming.

The clean cars issue was heard in the Senate and the House. Governor O’Malley was true to his word; not only did his newly-appointed Secretaries of MDE and DNR testify, but the Governor personally spoke in favor of the legislation.

The Governor has pledged to fully fund Program Open Space and support efficiency measures. Fortunately we have an administration that is supportive in light of the huge challenges that face us, and the Governor’s wise choices for department heads bode well for our environment and state as a whole.

These challenges include global warming, the health of the Bay, Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC), transportation (Inter-County Connector), and a myriad of other concerns too numerous to mention. However, we as Sierrans must look at these issues as challenges and opportunities.


How You Can Help

We look to our elected officials for leadership, and they need our support to succeed. What can you do?


-Write “letters to the editor.”

-Call your legislators not only to encourage their vote, but to say “thank you” when they do the right thing.

-Visit Annapolis to testify on bills that are crucial to our agenda.


We need to show our strength through the grassroots endorsement of our members so that our voice can be heard.


The Challenge of BRAC

The health of the environment, not just in our state but worldwide, is at stake. The decisions that we make will have an impact on future generations. In Maryland, the growth we face as BRAC moves forward will strain our communities. We will be facing a rapid population growth around our military bases. How to accommodate jobs, schools, housing, and at the same time protect water resources, open space, and the Bay will be a great challenge.

Are you ready for these new issues and opportunities? Get involved! There has never been a time as important as now.




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