A Meaningful Win for Lothian
By: Patrick DeArmey
CLA continues its work in the Lothian and Harwood communities along Sands Road in Anne Arundel County. This rural residential area is inundated with industrial pollution sources that cause direct releases of pollution to the air and water but also create other problems such as excessive heavy truck traffic, extreme noise, and impacts on the well-being of the community. These are issues the community has been dealing with for over 30 years.
Since our last update in August 2022, a CLA Volunteer Attorney with assistance from CLA Staff Attorney, Patrick DeArmey, won a decision before the Anne Arundel County Zoning Administrative Hearing Officer (“AHO”). The AHO ruled that a mining operation on Sands Road was not complying with the terms of its over 40-year-old Special Zoning Exception and rescinded the Special Exception and ordered all operations on the property to cease immediately. As far as CLA is aware, this is one of the only times a Special Exception has been successfully challenged in Anne Arundel County.
On the wastewater pollution side of the issues in Lothian, Patrick DeArmey, in collaboration with a law professor and student at American University Law school, submitted a Clean Water Act enforcement referral letter to EPA and MDE requesting specific enforcement actions against a company that manages four mobile home parks in Lothian that all have recent and ongoing noncompliance with their wastewater pollution permits. CLA and clients are set to meet with EPA and MDE in early 2023 to advocate for tougher enforcement against these non-compliant pollution sources. CLA will continue our efforts to reduce pollution and enhance the quality of life for this living on and around Sands Road.