HOUSE OF DELEGATES

STANDING COMMITTEES

ENVIRONMENT & TRANSPORTATION COMMITTEE

ORIGIN & FUNCTIONS


The Environment and Transportation Committee originated in 1969 as the Environmental Matters Committee. The House of Delegates, however, had formed earlier standing committees concerned with the environment. The Committee on Chesapeake Bay and its Tributaries, for example, had functioned from 1872 to 1968. Created in 1947, the Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee also had continued until 1968, when the Natural Resources Committee briefly was established. In the following year, the Environmental Matters Committee assumed responsibilities of that committee. In January 2015, the Committee reorganized as the Environment and Transportation Committee.

The Environment and Transportation Committee is assigned legislation relating to agriculture; bi-county agencies; environmental matters, including agricultural land preservation, program open space, and vehicle emissions; ethics; housing, landlord and tenant, and real property, including lead paint; local government, including land use; natural resources; and transportation (non-revenue related), including highways, bridges, mass transit, and motor vehicles.

This committee is composed of twenty-two delegates (House Rules 17, 18; Code State Government Article, secs. 2-1102 through 2-1105).


SUBCOMMITTEES

By 1976, the Environmental Matters Committee used two subcommittees: Adequate Public Facilities, and Health and Mental Hygiene. By 1982, six subcommittees reviewed legislation: Crab Waste; Fire Safety; Health Boards Funding; Mosquito Control; Public Lands; and Public Service Commission Laws. Later, the Committee worked through three subcommittees: Agriculture, Environment and Natural Resources; Health; and Public Utilities. From January 2003 to December 2005, six subcommittees functioned: Agriculture, Agriculture Preservation, and Open Space; Environment; Housing and Real Property; Local Government and Bi-County Agencies; Motor Vehicles and Transportation; and Natural Resources and Ethics. In 2006, the Land Use and Ethics Subcommittee was added to aid the Committee's work, and the Natural Resources and Ethics Subcommittee was renamed the Natural Resources Committee. In January 2015, the Subcommittee on Agriculture, Agricultural Preservation and Open Space, and the Subcommittee on Natural Resources merged to form the Natural Resources, Agriculture and Open Space Subcommittee. Now, the Committee divides its work among six subcommittee.

ENVIRONMENT SUBCOMMITTEE
The Environment Subcommittee originated as the Environmental and Natural Resources Subcommittee in 1995. In 1999, it reformed as the Agriculture, Environment and Natural Resources Subcommittee, and became the Environment Subcommittee in January 2003.

HOUSING & REAL PROPERTY SUBCOMMITTEE
In January 2003, the Housing and Real Property Subcommittee began under the Environmental Matters Committee.

LAND USE & ETHICS SUBCOMMITTEE
The Land Use and Ethics Subcommittee organized in January 2006.

LOCAL GOVERNMENT & BI-COUNTY AGENCIES SUBCOMMITTEE
The Local Government and Bi-County Agencies Subcommittee started in January 2003.

MOTOR VEHICLES & TRANSPORTATION SUBCOMMITTEE
The Motor Vehicles and Transportation Subcommittee formed in January 2003.

NATURAL RESOURCES, AGRICULTURE & OPEN SPACE SUBCOMMITTEE
The Natural Resources, Agriculture and Open Space Subcommittee started in 1995 as the Environmental and Natural Resources Subcommittee. In 1999, it reformed as the Agriculture, Environment and Natural Resources Subcommittee. In January 2003, its responsibilities were divided between the Agriculture, Agricultural Preservation and Open Space Subcommittee and the Natural Resources Subcommittee. The Natural Resources Subcommittee combined with the Ethics Subcommittee to form the Natural Resources and Ethics Subcommittee in January 2005. It reformed as the Natural Resources Subcommittee in January 2006. Later, the Subcommittee on Agriculture, Agricultural Preservation and Open Space reunited with the Natural Resources Subcommittee to form the Natural Resource, Agriculture and Open Space Subcommittee in January 2015.

WORK GROUPS

During the 2004 interim, some nine work groups functioned within the Environmental Matters Committee. They were concerned with Abatement of Drug-related Nuisances; Affordable Housing; Electronics Recycling; Highway and Speed Cameras; Housing for Individuals with Disabilities; Motor Vehicle Issues; Natural Resources; Public and Private Fundraising for the Chesapeake Bay; and Wetlands and Waterways Funding. All of these concluded their work in 2004.

During the 2007 Session, the Ground Rent Work Group met to review legislation dealing with ground rents.

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