News from the DNR Office of Communications

BPW Approves Preservation Of 45 Acres In Worcester County Through Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program

Annapolis, Md. (May 18, 2011) - Governor Martin O’Malley today announced Board of Public Works (BPW) approval to preserve 34 acres of streamside forests, natural areas and wetlands in Worcester County through the Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP) easement option. As part of the transaction, the landowner will be donating an easement on an additional 11 acres of adjacent property for a total of 45 acres that will be permanently protected.

“Maryland is fortunate to have landowners who continue to see the big picture by ensuring their property contains permanent conservation practices,” said Governor O’Malley. “These actions have a significant impact on the health of the Chesapeake Bay.”

The easement on the property owned by Persimmon Point LLC will permanently protect water quality through streamside buffers along 1,100 feet of tributaries to the Pocomoke River, an important tributary of the Chesapeake Bay.

“This 45-acre farm, adjacent to a sensitive marsh on the lower Pocomoke River, has been restored to wetland habitat through the CREP Program,” said Worcester County Commissioner James C. “Bud” Church. “Worcester County is grateful to the State of Maryland for the opportunity to protect this restored property permanently.”

This CREP easement will be co-held by Worcester County and the Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR).

Maryland’s CREP easement option is administered by DNR and is funded through Program Open Space. The State of Maryland has entered into an agreement with the U. S. Department of Agriculture and the Commodity Credit Corporation to provide funds to landowners who make permanent the conservation practices established through 10- or 15- year CREP contracts. CREP provides for the establishment of stream buffers, grass plantings, shrubs and trees, and the retirement of highly erodible land. In addition to providing important habitat for wildlife, all of these practices work to improve water quality in the Chesapeake Bay watershed by reducing soil runoff, increasing groundwater absorption, and reducing stream sedimentation and nutrient loading into Maryland’s waterways.

The three member Board of Public Works is composed of Governor O’Malley (chair), Treasurer Nancy Kopp and Comptroller Peter Franchot. The BPW is authorized by the General Assembly to approve major construction and consultation contracts, equipment purchases, property transactions and other procurement transactions.


   May 18, 2011

Contact: Josh Davidsburg
410-260-8002 office I 410-507-7526 cell
jdavidsburg@dnr.state.md.us

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources is the state agency responsible for providing natural and living resource-related services to citizens and visitors. DNR manages nearly a half-million acres of public lands and 17,000 miles of waterways, along with Maryland's forests, fisheries and wildlife for maximum environmental, economic and quality of life benefits. A national leader in land conservation, DNR-managed parks and natural, historic and cultural resources attract 11 million visitors annually. DNR is the lead agency in Maryland's effort to restore the Chesapeake Bay, the state's number one environmental priority. Learn more at www.dnr.maryland.gov.