HB 720/SB 830

DESCRIPTION

Fishery Management Plans – Oysters. Removes the Secretary of Natural Resources from a reconstituted oyster futures consensus process to be called the Oyster Advisory Commission. The new Commission will be double in size of the Oyster Futures Group. The MD House and Senate would each have 2 voting representatives, but there would be NO voting representatives from the Governor or the Administration. Allows the Commission to meet in CLOSED SESSIONS TO DEVELOP the package of consensus recommendations for enhancing and implementing the Fishery Management Plan for Oysters that the State Department of Natural Resources must implement without any involvement or participation by the Dept.

MESSAGE

(Pick one or two reasons)
PLEASE UPHOLD THE GOVERNOR’S VETO BECAUSE

This legislation violates the premise of Open government, bi-partisanship, transparency and accountability. It authorizes the new Commission to meet and come to a consensus on the package of recommendations without any public scrutiny or accountability. It excludes the Governor or the Dept. of Natural Resources from any participation, voice or vote on the Oyster Management Plan recommendations that the Dept. must implement. It delays for 2 additional years the implementation of several key recommendations of the original OysterFutures effort regarding the Choptank & Little Choptank rivers and delays for 2 more years a consensus package for implementation.