Press Release

BALTIMORE, MD (March 16, 2005) – At the request of Maryland Secretary of the Environment (MDE) and current Chairman of the Susquehanna River Basin Commission (SRBC) Kendl P. Philbrick, SRBC staff this week agreed to delay a proposed hearing on the City of Aberdeen’s request for an increase in its appropriation of water from Deer Creek. The hearing will be scheduled after the MDE and SRBC have fully evaluated any impacts from the implications of the city’s recent violations of the current SRBC authorization.

“Because of the City's violations of the SRBC Deer Creek water withdrawal docket requirements, MDE is reevaluating the City's water appropriations permit to see what modifications may be appropriate to ensure that the Creek is protected,” Secretary Philbrick said.

MDE’s water appropriations permit for the City of Aberdeen to withdraw water from Deer Creek has been contested in separate actions by Harford County and a group of landowners and local interest groups and is currently under review by the Department. Today’s action by Secretary Philbrick will prevent Aberdeen from moving forward with its request to increase its appropriation of water from Deer Creek until MDE and SRBC have completed their evaluation of the violations and possible implications for the new permit requirements.

Secretary Philbrick said, “I am confident that my fellow SRBC Commissioners will agree to delay any action the Commission may take until the reevaluation is complete.”