About 100 farmers — some delivering heated remarks to state agriculture officials — attended a public hearing Wednesday night at the Washington County Agricultural Education Center regarding new proposed regulations they might have to follow to protect the Chesapeake Bay from pollution.
The proposed changes are to Maryland’s Nutrient Management Regulations and include proposed laws that govern how nutrients are applied to soil.
One proposal that drew criticism is that farmers will have to establish a 35-foot setback from perennial and intermittent streams when applying nutrients.
Jerry Ditto of Clear Spring had concerns about the proposals and questioned how other states are dealing with the mandates to clean up the bay.
Ditto, who runs a 130-acre crop farm, singled out Pennsylvania and said he will “bet the farm” that their regulations will be less restrictive.