Many of your readers have followed the Lakeside controversy closely for months. I believe they would want to know that this morning, on behalf of The Talbot Integrity Project (“TIP”), I sent to Attorney General Brian Frosh and Maryland Department of Environment (“MDE”) Secretary Ben Grumbles a “30-day notice letter,” the step legally required before filing litigation under the Maryland Environmental Standards Act.
The letter has a two-fold purpose. The second (and shorter) section sets out our concerns about improper procedural matters in sufficient detail to afford the Attorney General’s Office an opportunity to intercede prior to litigation if it wishes…which is the purpose of the notice requirement.
But the first and more important section of the letter urges that MDE, and all of us, to set aside for the moment the perhaps-too-much-discussed procedural dispute and any animosity that raised. Perhaps we can simply look at the substantive question. MDE itself has never been presented with the “new information” that the Talbot Planning Commission received last year concerning La Trappe Creek, the existing Trappe Plant, and the implications of hooking up 120 (or more) homes there.
Citizens ought not have to raise funds to sue our government to do the right thing—to defer any such hookups until they can be done safely. Hopefully MDE will itself hear a proper presentation of that information, in which case many think they would take action on Lakeside, and the need for litigating would fall away completely.
(As to litigation, TIP previously announced its launch of a Litigation Fund to raise $500,000 for the legal defense of Talbot County’s Comprehensive Plan and the integrity of our land review processes. While not yet having reached our goal, the response has been very substantial: over 150 citizens have contributed sums up to $25,000! About one-hundred smaller donors have contributed an average of $400, and the Ligation Fund is approximately two-thirds of the way to its final goal—far enough along to spring into action now. To help assure we have the resources we need for litigation should it come to that, visit the TIP GoFundMe page here or send a check payable to TIP at 8404 Aveley Manor Lane, Easton, MD, 21601.)
Dan Watson, Acting Chairman
The Talbot Integrity Project