Gov. Larry Hogan is keeping his promise to ease the regulatory burden on businesses. Maryland is currently prosecuting the fewest environmental violations that it has in two decades. Instead, Hogan’s administration has aimed to work with businesses to correct the problems rather than move straight to prosecution.
This move has been received well by the business community because it strikes a balance between prioritizing both economic growth and air/water quality. Since most business owners want to do the right thing anyway, this kind of cooperation from regulators is appreciated and appropriate. It’s also a relief after years of environmental measures—such as the rain tax and stricter septic system regulations—created additional burdens on businesses.
NFIB/MD State Director Mike O’Halloran told The Baltimore Sun, “The general sense from the small business community is they have a friend in this administration that understands what it’s like to be a small business owner and the very many challenges that they face.”
The Sun also reported that the Chesapeake Bay is in the best condition in decades, with improved water quality as well as plentiful blue crabs and underwater grasses. Opponents, however, say that conditions are still impaired and that there aren’t enough inspectors to make a cooperation approach effective.