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Aquaculture approvals speeded up

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Baltimore District and the Maryland Department of Natural Resources have jointly agreed on a streamlined procedure for processing applications for new oyster and other shellfish aquaculture activities in Maryland waters, including the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries.

The new procedure took effect on Monday. Applicants are now able to submit a joint state-federal application, and the Corps is expediting the approval process through issuance of a permit called the Regional General Permit-1.

Prior to initiation of the streamlined process, all applications to the state to engage in aquaculture activities needed separate Corps of Engineers review and approval.