The city of Maumee has initiated the process to establish an environmental commission solely focused on natural and built environmental health. The impending passage of Ordinance No. 057-2021 amends the city’s revised code to create the Chapter 189 Environmental Commission.
The Maumee Environmental Commission, recommended by Maumee councilperson Gabe Barrow, is advisory only with no regulatory authority. However, it has several goals:
- Develop comprehensive, integrated environmental policies for implementation by the city to protect and enhance air, water, land and public health.
- Help set goals and policies for the city and community to continuously improve the natural and built environment.
- Create an environmental action plan that engages units of government and citizens in a discussion about the health of the Maumee River Basin.
Nine members will serve on the Maumee Environmental Commission in staggered terms. All must be residents of the city and will preferably have experience and/or an interest in protecting and enhancing the well-being of the environment and public health of the community. Two city council members will be voting members and serve as co-chairpersons during their tenure. The city administrator will also serve as a permanent, voting member of the commission.
In addition to the Maumee Environmental Commission, the city is hiring an environmental sustainability manager who will report directly to the city administrator to support the work of the commission and coordinate environmental programs. The manager’s duties will revolve around advising management and staff on product and program development and ensuring program implementation.
“The important relationship between environmental and public health is well-documented,” said Maumee Mayor Richard Carr. “As a river community, our responsibility to enhance that relationship is critical and requires the collaboration of both citizens and elected representatives in an official capacity. The environmental commission provides a framework for both sharing expertise and demonstrating advocacy to benefit our community. Maumee is very serious about this initiative.”
In addition, the creation of the Maumee Environmental Commission will establish a conservation fund to be appropriated annually by Maumee City Council. This fund will include funds from the city budget as well as private contributions, including gifts, grants, donations or awards.
The process to fully establish Maumee’s Environmental Commission will be completed on Monday, December 6.