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New Phosphorus Rules from Governor

governor's office (file phot0)

Governor Larry Hogan has laid out a new phosphorus initiative.

Billed as an enhanced phosphorus management tool the Maryland Governor would give more time for farmers to cut their use of phosphorus and would immediately stop the state’s greatest offenders.

Most farmers would have until 2022 to fully comply with the new regulations.

Hogan’s spokeswoman Erin Montgomery said that 21 percent of farmers on the Lower Shore would feel the immediate impact of the change.

For a farmer who has phosphorus output above a certain level he would be barred from using any additional phosphorus.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that Alison Prost, executive director of the Chesapeake Bay Foundation’s Maryland branch, said she was pleased with the governor trying to tackle the problem but there were still unanswered questions.

These include the impact on state spending and how the tool will be evaluated.

These questions, she added, keep the Foundation from supporting the plan at this time.

The proposal has the support of Delamrva Poultry Industry Inc. as well as agriculture.

Don Rush is the News Director at Delmarva Public Media. An award-winning journalist, Don reports major local issues of the day, from sea level rise, to urban development, to the changing demographics of Delmarva.