State approves Fox Creek dredging
The Baltimore Sun reports that the state Board of Public Works has unanimously approved a wetlands license that will allow much needed dredging work in Fox Creek to proceed.
The Board granted the license after investigating why the Maryland Department of the Environment changed course in 2007 and decided not to allow the dredging of Fox Creek.
Because it was the first time in the nearly 30-year history of the wetlands programme that MDE had reversed a decision, Board of Public Works staff decided to review the decision, Doldon W Moore Jr, BPW's wetlands administrator, told The Baltimore Sun.
Moore recommended the dredging be allowed, which sent the dispute between two dozen neighbours to the state's highest officials. The three-member board is made up of the governor, state treasurer and comptroller.
Gov Martin O'Malley said that dredging proponents had proved their point that Fox Creek was a navigable waterway and met state benchmarks for dredging.
However, he only approved a three-year license instead of the six-year one sought by Fox Creek Associates because he wanted water quality to be closely monitored.
(Revised April 2009)