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On November 7th and 8th, participants in Maryland Conservation Corps and Howard County's READY program joined South River Federation to plant trees and shrubs at the newly opened Homeport Farm Park. The weather was gorgeous both days and the groups worked fast. Thanks to their help, a large step has now been taken to reforest the County Park.

MCC and READY are both job training programs focused on the environmental field. 

The Maryland Conservation Corps (MCC) is an award-winning AmeriCorps program that engages young adults in extensive natural resource management and park conservation projects.

The READY (Restoring the Environment and Developing Youth) program works with the Howard County government to fund employment of young adults, aged 16-26, in building rain gardens throughout the county. This will help alleviate the flow of toxic stormwater runoff polluting our streams, rivers, and ultimately the Chesapeake Bay, and significantly eroding our land.

 Scientific Monitoring Round Table Discussion by Sarah Giordano

 Fall Community Meeting 10/11/16

 

Church Creek Restoration: The Headwaters

Background:Church Creek HW map2

This large scale restoration project was constructed in 2014. It is located near the top of Church Creek, just before Church Creek tidal (off of Rt.665).

Fall Community Meeting 10/11/16

Round Table Discussion led by Kirk Mantay, Director of Watershed Restoration, on the success of

The Impossible Stream logo100x100

Ten years ago, the Federation identified a small stream squeezed between Annapolis Harbour Center and Home Depot as the most degraded stream segment in the South River Watershed. Over 70% of its drainage area consisted of pavement or hard surface! Despite being told that it was “impossible” to restore the “dead stream” that leads into Church Creek (the most polluted creek on the river), the Federation believed that the polluted stormwater gushing from the stream had to be brought under control if we were to heal the river as a whole.

 

JESSE ILIFF, South Riverkeeper

County Enforcement Audit

Round Table Discussion at Fall Community Meeting 10/11/16

 

Enforcement

GOAL:

              Work with the County to improve procedures 

        in Inspections & Permits for enforcement

Enforcement resultslogo100x100enforcement strategy

Recommendations:

 

  1. Require online Vegetative Management Permits.

  2. Establish a baseline set of information for inspectors to review prior to inspection.

  3. Acquire a boat for County Inspections and Permits (I&P).

  4. Standardize data entry protocols and develop training for I&P personnel.

  5. Identify additional information that can be made available online.

  6. Vet contractors during selection process for past violations.

  7. Include prior compliance history with referrals to Office of Law.

Roundtable Discussion Notes

Fall Membership Meeting 10/11/2016

 

Advocacy: County Enforcement Audit
logo100x100

  • Jesse feels that enforcement/penalties are weak, which lead to him conducting an enforcement audit
  • Paying the fine vs. mitigationMitigation = source of pollution/sediment is taken care of NOT pollution all cleaned up; damage is done
    • Which is more costly?
  • Issues with Practices vs. Issues with Transparency
    • Antiquated software – Being updates; will standardize data entry
    • Recommendation: Have a Data Administrator who is in charge of data (entry, quality, etc.)
    • Potential for mapping function availability?
  • Where does the money from fines go?
    • A county general fund
    • People feel it should go to mitigation
  • One bad home/property can ruin lots of stormwater good practices – Enhancement of communication between departments/agencies?Question: How can such a large project get by without the necessary stormwater management?
    • County says it will be fixed with software upgrade
  • How do we report violations to you?
    • Online forms; Request an investigation
    • In order to be TRULY anonymous: mail in your forms, or report through SRF
    • SRF can do a better job of informing members what to do when you see a violation and how to report ***LINK HERE***
  • Does the county tell Jesse about planned projects?
    • Because he has been a "pain"; somewhat. Jesse has gotten a plan of DPW projects from the Director.
    • Online Clearinghouse for Development Proposals – maybe with the new software?
  • Do you feel threatened by an Enforement Audit?
    • Should SRF be doing an Audit? (maybe the State’s job?)
  • How can members advocate?
    • Contact with bureaucrats!
    • SRF disseminates information to members about violations, members keep an eye on violations, report if necessary.
    • Contact your neighbors and SRF about violations, there is power in numbers!
  • Establish your use/enjoyment of a resource now; document it!
    • Gives you standing
  • Do associations/organizations have standing?
    • Might depend on judge

South River Federation

2016 Fall Community Meeting and Round Table Discussions

   “Advice for the River”

 

On Oct. 11th, approximately 50 people attended the Federation’s fall community meeting and participated in three round table discussions on Federation initiatives currently underway. The primary goal of the meeting was to solicit “Advice for the South River” from our stakeholders.

During the opening business portion of the meeting, two sets of issues were brought to a vote:  a bylaw revision and the slate of new Board members. The bylaw changes were long overdue, and consisted primarily of a change to how the organization is run on a daily basis. Currently the Executive Director manages daily operations, with the Board of Directors overseeing the long-term strategy of the Federation. The old bylaws required a vote of the membership to make organizational changes, which is an antiquated way of managing the Federation. The second change allowed for the use of electronic voting, including email and phone conferencing. Both changes were voted on unanimously.