Environmental Justice Commission

Regular Meetings

Agendas & Minutes

Agendas are available prior to the meetings. Minutes are available following approval.
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Members

  • Calvin Hawkins, At-Large
    County Council
  • Franklin Shelton, Assistant State's Attorney
  • Joe Gill, Chair
    Director, Department of the Environment
  • Gary Cunningham
    Deputy Director, Department of Permitting, Inspections and Enforcement
  • Devon Dodson
    Snior Advisor, Maryland Department of the Environment
  • Evelyn Hoban
    Associate Director, Health Department
  • David Harrington
    President & CEO, Prince George's Chamber of Commerce
  • Sacoby Wilson
    Director, Community Engagement, Environmental Justice, and Health (CEEJH) Maryland Institute for Applied Environmental Health
  • Tiffany Ganthier
    Resident member of the public
  • Dennis Borie
    Resident member of the public

Environmental justice (EJ) is defined by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) as “the fair treatment and meaningful involvement of all people regardless of race, color, national origin, or income, with respect to the development, implementation, and enforcement of environmental laws, regulations, and policies.”

How are communities affected by Environmental Justice issues? 

When considering EJ literature and grassroots movements it is imperative to expound on the EPA definition by identifying which communities are affected and how they are affected. Prince George’s County Environmental Justice Commission provided an expanded EJ definition by including the EJ activist and scholar Bunyan Bryant’s analysis: “An environmental injustice occurs when a particular social group, not necessarily a racially ethnic group, is burdened with environmental hazards. […] It refers to those institutional rules, regulations, and policies of the government or corporate decisions that deliberately target certain communities for least desirable land uses, resulting in the disproportionate exposure of toxic and hazardous waste on communities based upon prescribed biological [socioeconomic] characteristics.”

Background and Purpose 

Concern for environmental health and its impact on public health prompted the Maryland General Assembly to establish a commission to study and make recommendations regarding certain environmental justice (EJ) issues and other matters that directly affect communities in Prince George’s County. The commission was enacted by Maryland House Bill 183 (HB 183) and first convened in 2018. The State amended this bill in 2019 with [HD1] the passing of HB 1362 .

The Commission is required to:

  1. Study environmental justice issues in Prince George’s County;
  2. Make recommendations regarding actions that should be taken to address environmental justice issues in Prince George’s County and the duration of the Commission
  3. Report its findings and recommendations with a plan of action to the Prince George’s County House Delegation in accordance with § 2–1246 of the State Government Article.

Commission Composition

HB 1362 (PDF) defines the Commission membership and requires that members represent: