Governor O'Malley Asks Maryland Congressional Delegation For $87 Million In Natural Resources Related Funding

Priorities support Bay restoration, oyster replenishment, law enforcement and more

Washington, DC (March 12, 2010) - Governor Martin O’Malley today requested $87 million in federal funding to support the State’s natural resources during his annual federal priorities presentation to the Maryland Congressional Delegation on Capitol Hill.

“Today we are requesting funding for programs that are vital to the health of Maryland’s natural resources, the health of our State’s economy, and the health of Maryland families,” said Governor O’Malley. “From restoring the Chesapeake and rebuilding our oyster population, to creating jobs in Western Maryland and providing employment and training for at risk youth, this funding will support our efforts to create a smarter, greener, more sustainable future for our State.”

The Governor’s requests included more than $30 million for Bay restoration efforts that will directly impact the State’s ability to meet its 2-year milestones, short term commitments to help Maryland meet its nutrient reduction goals by 2020. This includes funding for habitat and water quality monitoring and assessment, Bay grass restoration, expanding operations at the Cooperative Oxford Lab, and clean marinas.

“This funding is nothing less than preventative health care for the Chesapeake Bay and our economy.” said Kim Coble, Maryland Director of the Chesapeake Bay Foundation. “It will help implement important Bay restoration actions and create jobs. This funding makes economic and environmental sense.”

Also included in the federal priorities outlined by Governor O’Malley today were:

  • More than $10 million to support environmental education nationally and outdoor green jobs training through the NOAA B-WET program, the Maryland Conservation Corps and the Civic Justice Corps.

  • $10 million to implement the Anacostia Watershed Restoration Plan, a public private partnership to restore this important Bay tributary.

  • Nearly $7.5 million to support Maryland’s vulnerable coastal communities, including funding for beach replenishment and shoreline protection along Ocean City, Assateague Island and Smith Island.

  • $5 million to support Maryland’s Oyster Restoration and Aquaculture Redevelopment Plan, including funding for stock assessments and habitat evaluation.

  • $4.5 million to support the Mid-Atlantic Highlands Action Program, a regional partnership of state, local and federal agencies created to protect and restore the ecological assets, economic vitality and long-term sustainability of the Appalachian Mountains area.

  • $3.5 million in grants to the Natural Resources Police that will support boating safety education and will greatly enhance the State’s ability to enforce maritime and conservation laws – including the illegal harvest of oysters, crabs and striped bass.
  • "In my experience, the leadership of Governor O’Malley and our Congressional Delegation on these issues is unprecedented,” said Maryland Department of Natural Resources Secretary John Griffin, who accompanied Governor O’Malley to Capitol Hill today. “Today’s presentation is another remarkable example of how hard Team Maryland works to protect the land, water, fish and wildlife that support our quality of life, and important economies like tourism, forestry, agriculture and the seafood industry.”

    The balance of the Governor’s request — approximately $16.5 million — will support a variety of programs that serve Maryland citizens and visitors, including: expanded recreational opportunities and boating access; wildlife management, invasive species eradication and hunting safety; urban, community and private landowner forestry programs; and fires assistance programs.

    “During his first year in office, President Obama has made restoration of the Chesapeake Bay and protection of our environment a priority. We are very optimistic about the support of his Administration for these priorities,” added Governor O’Malley.


       March 12, 2010

    Contact: Josh Davidsburg
    410-260-8002 office | 410-507-7526 cell

    The Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR), which celebrated its 40th anniversary in 2009, is the state agency responsible for providing natural and living resource-related services to citizens and visitors. DNR manages more than 467,000 acres of public lands and 17,000 miles of waterways, along with Maryland's forests, fisheries, and wildlife for maximum environmental, economic and quality of life benefits. A national leader in land conservation, DNR-managed parks and natural, historic, and cultural resources attract 12 million visitors annually. DNR is the lead agency in Maryland's effort to restore the Chesapeake Bay, the state's number one environmental priority. Learn more at www.dnr.maryland.gov