Board or Committee Meeting
Tuesday, April 25, 2023 - 6:00pm to 7:00pm

The April 25 meeting of the Environmental Affairs Committee will be in person at 6 PM at Sturgis Moore Pavilion at 8th and Montgomery Streets.

All are invited



TUESDAY, APRIL 25, 2022, 6:00 PM


  1. Call to order – James Kole, Chairman
  2. Roll Call
  3. Approval of Minutes from March 28, 2023, meeting.
  4. Public Hearing
  5. Report from Environmental Programs Manager
  6. Short discussion of progress of No Mow April initiative. NOT discussion of the merits of the program.
  7. Discussion and recommendations for Plastic Bag Ordinance No. 2008 to modify Chapter 9, Article X of the Laurel City Code


  1. Discussion and recommendations for the Organics Composting Amendment to modify Chapter 7 of the Laurel City Code


  1. Next Meeting – May 23, 2023, On Zoom


  1. Adjournment



Tuesday, March 28, 2023

Via Zoom



  1. Call to Order


The meeting was called to order at 6:02 PM.


  1. Roll Call

Council member and Committee chair James Kole, Committee members  Cynthia Wood, Janice Blitz, Kyla Clark, Barbara Robinson, and Jimmy Rogers were present, as were Administrative Assistant II Laura Christoplos, Environmental Programs Manager Michele Blair, and Laurel citizens Jhanna Levin and Staley Comisiak.  The whole Committee was in attendance!


  1. Approval of Minutes from January 24, 2023, and February 28, 2023, meeting.

The minutes from both meetings were approved as written.

  1. Public Hearing

No one wanted tospeak.

  1. Report from Environmental Programs Manager

Ms. Blair talked about legislation updating our Plastic Bag Bill, and regarding our waste diversion.

The next event is the April 22 Earth Day planting at the Farmer’s Market lot from 12-3. Registration is required. It will be on the website tomorrow.

No Mow April registration is up to about 80, predominantly in Ward 1.

Ms. Blair and Ms. Humes will be collaborating on the Earth Day event and the planting for the Larry T. Smith Garden.

Mr. Rogers asked that the drafts of the Plastic Bag and Waste updates be sent to the committee for review. Ms. Clark mentioned that plastic bags are being used at the Amish Market. Ms. Blair suggested reporting infractions to FMPS or to her. Ms. Blair clarified the current Plastic Bag Ban.

  1. Discussion of Jerry Lawson presentation.

Ms. Clark asked if staff wanted to offer the pamphlets to local businesses. Mr. Rogers asked about reaching out to the Laurel Business Community and Board of Trade and possibly the Main Street Committee.

Ms. Clark suggested the city look into the low cost window insert program. Mr. Kole stated that it would have to be paid out of the tax base, so would not happen till FY25 since it is not in this year’s budget.


Mr. Rogers asked if the committee ever wrote letters to other levels of government to advocate for programs like this. Mr. Kole explained that the committee could make a motion requesting that the administration draft a letter which would then go to the Mayor and City Council. Council members would sign off on it individually then send it to the 21st District Delegation who would take it up in Annapolis next year.


Mr. Rogers suggested that Ms. Clark draft a list of what the committee would like to get out of the program before it goes to the administration. She asked that committee members send her bullet points and thoughts that she would combine into one document. It can be voted on at the next meeting.


Mr. Kole suggested sending the information about houses of worship to the City’s Committee for Houses of Worship. Ms. Clark suggested adding a link to the Green Living page and the EAC page as a resource.

A Google doc was sent out to add points for the letter. Mr. Kole will contact the Committee for Houses of Worship. Ms. Blair said she would pass the information along to the houses of worship.


  1. Reports from subcommittees. Please limit reports to 10 minutes each.
    1. Website and social media on hold until the new City website is rolled out.

There is a full time social media person now if we want to send content out.


  1. Bee City

Follow up on No Mow April kickoff.

Update on volunteers.

Mr. Rogers talked about the kickoff event and all the participants. It was a very engaged group with lots of questions. Mr. Kole was impressed with how many people were asking about the compost bins. Ms. Blair felt it was a good community building event. Mr. Kole would have liked a tighter agenda with time frames. Mr. Rogers would have liked a prep meeting with all participants ahead of time. Ms. Blair would like to see more people from Ward 2 participating.


Laurel TV should have their piece from the event up by the end of the week.


Mr. Rogers said he would like to send something out on social media in May asking for pictures of people’s yards. Our social media people were asking attendees at the event if they could go around taking pictures of their yards.

Mr. Rogers let everyone know that he will be writing articles for the Laurel Independent every month through August.

He wants the Bee City subcommittee’s focus to shift to what they need to do to maintain Laurel’s Bee City certification. He would also like to do more in coordination with other groups.


  1. New Business
    1. Animal Waste compliance actions

Mr. Kole asked for volunteers to pull the highlights from the document above to start putting some information out later in the year.

No one was interested. We will table it for now. Ms. Clark said she will look into it.

  1. Plastic Bag compliance actions

This was discussed earlier in the meeting.



  1. Next Meeting – April 25, 2023, In person


At Sturgis Moore Pavilion.


Ms. Robinson brought up the trash problem in Laurel and elsewhere. She would like to talk more about it. Mr. Kole suggested taking a picture of people spewing trash behind mowers and reporting it in the MyLaurel app or organizing a trash pickup event.

Mr. Rogers asked Ms. Robinson to narrow down the problem and what the committee would like to address. Mr. Kole said we would add it to next month’s agenda.


  1. Adjournment


The meeting was adjourned at 7:06 PM.                               

Green Living

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