2019 MD Legislative Recap

Every year, the Maryland General Assembly considers upwards of 2,500 bills of which as many as 700 or more may become law. And all this happens during a 90 day session! MRN advocates on behalf of the Maryland recycling community to ensure that legislative initiatives achieve their stated goals in a cost- and time-effective manner without creating unintended consequences that hobble our mission to promote a healthy, sustainable environment. If you’re not a member, please support our efforts byjoining today. Click here to see membership options.

In 2019, MRN stated its position on five bills impacting the Maryland recycling community. Below are details on each bill as well as MRN’s position and status.

HB0109 / SB0285 Environment – Expanded Polystyrene Food Service Products

Prohibition: Prohibiting a person from selling in the State a certain expanded polystyrene food service product on or after January 1, 2020; prohibiting certain food service businesses and certain schools from selling or providing food in certain expanded polystyrene food service products on or after January 1, 2020; requiring a county health department to impose penalties of up to $250 for certain violations; requiring a county health department to notify the Department of the Environment of certain violations; providing a certain waiver; etc.

MRN Position – Support with Recommendations
Enacted under Article II, Section 17(c) of the Maryland Constitution – Chapter 579

HB0257 Civil Action –  Immunities – Donated Food

Providing that a nonprofit corporation, organization, or association may not be liable for certain acts or omissions relating to donated food; and applying the Act prospectively.

MRN Position – Support
Status: Unfavorable Report by Judiciary; Withdrawn

HB0502 Environment – Office of Recycling – Mattresses and Box Springs

Requiring the Office of Recycling within the Department of the Environment to provide to local communities certain encouragement, information, and examples relating to certain programs that divert mattresses and box springs from disposal in landfills and incinerators and that recycle or reuse mattresses and box springs; and requiring the Office, in coordination with the Maryland Environmental Service, to include in a certain report certain information relating to mattresses and box springs.

MRN Position – Support
Status: Failed in Senate

HB0510 Composting – Food Waste – Acceptance for Final Disposal

Prohibiting the owner or operator of a refuse disposal system from accepting loads of separately collected food waste for final disposal unless the owner or operator provides for the composting of the food waste.

MRN Position – Support
Approved by the Governor – Chapter 366

SB0370 Environment – Recycling – Commercial Properties

Requiring a county to address, in a certain recycling plan, the collection and recycling of recyclable materials from commercial properties that are occupied by commercial entities with a total of at least 200 full-time employees; requiring owners of certain commercial properties to provide for recycling for the employees on the properties on or before October 1, 2021; providing for a civil penalty for a certain violation; providing for a delayed effective date for a certain provision of the Act; etc.

MRN Position – Support with Recommendations
Approved by the Governor – Chapter 50

Other Approved Legislation

HB0511 Maryland Commercial Fertilizer Law – Definition of Soil Conditioner – Alteration
Approved by the Governor – Chapter 367

HB0539 Environment – Reuse of Water Diverted From Septic Systems
Approved by the Governor – Chapter 368

HB0954 Agriculture – Commercial Compost – Prohibition on Per Ton Inspection Fee
Approved by the Governor – Chapter 178

HB1166 Howard County – Authority to Impose Fees for Use of Disposable Bags Ho. Co. 04-19
Enacted under Article II, Section 17(c) of the Maryland Constitution – Chapter 725

Other Failed Legislation

HB0125 Solar Photovoltaic Recycling
Unfavorable Report by Economic Matters

HB0134 Environment – Single-Use Plastic Straws – Use in Restaurants
Unfavorable Report by Economic Matters; Withdrawn

HB0492 Procurement – Carbon-Intensive Foods
Unfavorable Report by Health and Government Operations; Withdrawn

HB1142 Environment – Hazardous Materials – Disposal of Synthetic Turf and Turf Infill
Unfavorable Report by Environment and Transportation; Withdrawn

SB0183 Recycling – Lodging Establishments – Notification to Guests
Unfavorable Report by Education, Health, and Environmental Affairs; Withdrawn

SB0563 / HB1419 Zoning – Special Exceptions – Construction or Operation of Landfill
Unfavorable Report by House Rules and Executive Nominations; Withdrawn

MD Recycling Laws “On the Books”

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