UPDATE: The Maryland General Assembly Passes the Forest Mitigation Bank Bill With Significant Environmental Protections Attached

In a 100 to 38 favorable vote, the Maryland General Assembly passed House Bill 991 in both chambers with amendments aimed at addressing environmental concerns raised by environmental advocacy groups. HB 991, now renamed the “Tree Solutions Now Act of 2021”, appropriated government funding to a series of programs designed to preserve tree canopies and other forest protections. The amendments made significant technical changes to the bill, particularly modifying any use of the term “preservation” to be replaced with the … Continue Reading

ALERT: Proposed Forest Conservation Legislation

that could have a significant effect on development moving forward

Forest mitigation banks are an off-site method commonly used to meet certain environmental requirements under the Maryland Forest Conservation Act (the “Act”).  A recent Office of the Attorney General opinion established that off-site existing forests encumbered with a protective easement do not qualify as forest mitigation banks.  This strict interpretation of forest mitigation banks has the potential to have significant effect on development moving forward, particularly for developers in heavily urbanized jurisdictions.  House Bill 991 was recently introduced in an … Continue Reading

Upcoming Dates: Montgomery County Subdivision Staging Policy (Growth Policy)

Steve RobinsSteve Robins

As noted in our prior post, the Montgomery County Council has begun its review of the Planning Board’s Final Draft 2020 – 2024 Subdivision Staging Policy.  By law, the Council must approve the SSP no later than November 15.  In order to meet this deadline, the Council has scheduled several worksessions. GO/PHED Committees have held two joint worksession thus far (September 25 and 30), on both the transportation and school elements, including issues involving the SSP and Impact Taxes. … Continue Reading