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Opinion: Keeping secrets on the farm


September 17, 2010
By Peter Jenson Baltimore Sun

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September 17, 2010,
Baltimore, MD – Imagine that you live near an industry that you suspect
pollutes a river, a bunch of sewage treatment plants perhaps. You ask state
government for records of how the plants have been regulated and what standards
they must meet.
September 17, 2010,
Baltimore, MD – Imagine that you live near an industry that you suspect
pollutes a river, a bunch of sewage treatment plants perhaps. You ask state
government for records of how the plants have been regulated and what standards
they must meet.

Although the agency is
required to provide those public documents, officials hem and haw and,
unbeknownst to you, reach out to a trade group that then files a legal
challenge to stop the release of information. A local judge agrees to issue a
temporary restraining order.

Now instead of sewage
plants, think farms, and that’s the frustrating situation confronting
environmental groups in Worcester County who got the runaround from the
Maryland Department of Agriculture.

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