Baltimore County's Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC)—comprising community leaders, business leaders and local fire, police, EMS and emergency management responders—meets regularly to develop and review contingency and evacuation plans for emergencies involving hazardous materials. These may include weather disasters, industrial or transportation accidents and terrorist attacks.
The mission of the Baltimore County Local Emergency Planning Committee is to promote safety in the community by promoting hazardous materials awareness, supporting planning efforts, encouraging cooperative partnerships between the community and industry, and developing and sponsoring educational and training program relative to hazardous materials for the Baltimore County emergency response community, industry and the community.
The name of this committee, as originally established November 9, 1987, shall be the Baltimore County Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC).
To serve the Baltimore County Maryland government in an advisory capacity; to facilitate the coordination of effort by response agencies and resources with regard to hazardous materials incidents, through maintenance and administration of the Baltimore County Emergency Operations Plan as it relates to hazardous materials. The LEPC’s activities shall include the following:
- Maintaining compliance with hazardous materials regulations, such as SARA Title III—which established SERC’s and LEPC’s—including EPCRA, as amended, as well as other directly relevant Federal and State regulations as they apply.
- Revising the plan to keep it current and distributing the revisions to appropriate responders.
- Conducting public awareness and education programs designed to create an informed and knowledgeable public.
- Assuring that drills and subsequent critiques are conducted on a regular basis to test the effectiveness of the Plan.
- Monitoring and evaluating the level of preparedness of responders and resources.
- Reviewing and coordinating critiques of actual hazardous materials incidents.
- Studying recent developments and regulations in the field of hazardous materials.
- Providing formal recommendations concerning hazardous materials response and preparedness to the County Executive’s office and appropriate agencies.
The LEPC shall have the following officers:
- A Chairman, the primary representatives of the Baltimore County Fire Department
- A Vice-Chairman, elected at large
- A Secretary, elected at large
The membership could include, but is not limited to, the following—all serving at the pleasure of the County Executive:
- Baltimore County Department of Environmental Resource Management (EPS)
- Baltimore County Fire Department
- Baltimore County Police Department
- Baltimore County Health Department
- Baltimore County Schools
- Baltimore County Bureau of Utilities
- Baltimore County Sheriff ’s Office
- Baltimore County Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Management
- Baltimore County Executive Office, or elected representative’s office
- Community Representatives
- Baltimore Gas and Electric
- Maryland Air National Guard
- Maryland Emergency Management Agency (MEMA)
- Maryland Occupational Safety and Health Administration
- Maryland State Police
- Medical community, including hospitals
- South Baltimore Industrial Mutual Aid Plan (SBIMAP)
- Transportation industry
- County industries and businesses.
Bylaws may be amended through a process by which the proposed changes are distributed in writing, or via email, to committee members at least 15 days prior to the next scheduled meeting; and then adopted at the meeting by a favorable vote of two-thirds of a quorum or a majority of members present, whichever is greater.
A. Each designated member organization or group shall provide a primary and at least one alternate representative.
- These representatives and alternates need not be from the same unit of the designated organization or group.
- These representatives and alternates are considered to represent all units of their respective organizations or groups.
- These representatives and alternates shall be responsible for keeping the entire organization they represent informed about LEPC activities.
B. Each designated member organization or group will be considered a single voting entity when determining a quorum or conducting LEPC business; however, on issues where there is a general consensus all present may so signify. In the event there is a significant dissent, as determined by the Chairperson, the issue will be tabled until the following meeting where the designated member organization or group members only will vote.
C. The County Executive, at his or her discretion, may revise the list of designated organizations or groups upon recommendation of the Executive Committee, or as the need arises.
D. The Executive Committee will annually review the attendance and may declare the existence of a vacancy in the LEPC and request the affected organization to name a replacement representative whenever an organization’s representative and alternate fail to attend more than one-half of scheduled meetings over a 12-month period.
E. Auxiliary representatives may attend LEPC meetings and participate in LEPC activities but shall not have voting privileges or be counted for quorum; neither shall they serve as committee chairperson, except as specifically exempted by the Executive Committee.
- Auxiliary representatives are defined as individuals with particular expertise who are affiliated with member organizations or individuals from non-member organizations invited to participate in a particular committee function as supplemental resources.
- Auxiliary membership is considered to be temporary, although the length of tenure may vary from a brief interval necessary to complete a specific project to indefinitely extended appointment by the LEPC.
Meetings shall be scheduled by the Chairperson and announced by the Secretary.
- The frequency of regular meetings shall be determined by need, but shall occur at least quarterly. Notification will be made by the LEPC Chair to any LEPC member upon missing two meetings.
- Special meetings may be called by the Chairperson at any time with at least 10 calendar days notice to representatives.
- For purposes of voting, a quorum is defined as 12 members or 51 percent of current active designated organizations or groups as outlined in Article IV of the Charter, whichever is less.
A. A number of permanent committees, known as Standing Committees, shall be established for the purpose of carrying out the LEPC’s responsibilities and assuring that the work effort is equitably distributed among the membership.
Standing committees are as follows:
- Rules and Bylaws
- Public Information and Education
- Drills, Training, Response
- Legislation and Regulations
- Grants and Funding
B. Additional committees may be appointed by the Executive Committee as the need arises.
- Those which address continuing concerns may become standing Committees.
- Those which by nature of their assignment seem transient shall be designated temporary committees.
C. Each committee must have a chairperson and sufficient membership to carry out its missions and objectives.
- Will be appointed by the LEPC Chairperson.
- Must be an LEPC representative or alternate.
- Shall schedule and conduct committee meetings and shall report on committee activities and progress at each scheduled LEPC meeting. These responsibilities may be delegated to committee members at the discretion of the Chairperson.
- Except in the instances of the Executive and Plan Administration Committees, membership of a committee may come from LEPC member alternates, auxiliary members or from any other resources that the committee deems appropriate.
- Executive Committee membership shall be composed of Executive Officers and all Standing Committee Chairpersons.
Article IV—Duties of The Officers
- Serves as Chairperson of the LEPC and of the Executive Committee.
- Conducts all LEPC meetings.
- Presents meeting agenda to the LEPC.
- Brings to the LEPC ’s attention all relevant matters.
- Serves as an ex officio member of all committees.
- Serves as spokesperson for the LEPC on all matters, but may delegate this responsibility at his/her discretion.
- Assumes all duties of the Chairperson, when needed.
- Assists in program preparation.
- Prepares and distributes minutes of each General and Executive Committee meeting.
- Maintains LEPC records and files.
- Maintains LEPC library.
Article V—Duties of Committee Chairpersons
A. Executive Committee
- Devises policies and procedures and presents decisions to LEPC; (LEPC may overrule by a vote of 2/3 majority.)
- Schedules meetings of LEPC.
- Prepares meeting agenda and programs.
- Administers Hazardous Materials Emergency Plan. Keeps plan current and supervises its distribution .
- Declares and fills vacancies.
- Meets prior to each general meeting.
B. Rules and Bylaws Committee Chairperson
- Develops bylaws and charter.
- Prepares amendments and submits to LEPC for vote.
- Maintains bylaws.
- Monitors activity of LEPC to ensure that bylaws are observed.
- Provides rulings to questions raised.
C. Public Information/Education Committee
- Develops and conducts a public awareness program
- Oversees preparation of program elements.
- Distributes and/or makes available informational material and generates news releases, as appropriate.
- Maintains and updates public awareness program.
D. Drills, Training, Response
- Coordinates and participates in annual full field exercises.
- Coordinates other drills.
- Conducts critiques of drills and incidents.
- Provides follow up on critiques.
- Recommends plan modifications, based on critiques.
- Recommends training of response agencies based on critiques.
- Follow-up training with the appropriate agencies.
- Distributes or makes available information regarding training.
- Coordinates medical information for the LEPC.
- Updates the LEPC on training progress and drills.
F. Legislation and Regulations
- Reports on legislation potentially affecting member organizations.
- Develops legislation for LEPC review and implementation.
- Reviews existing regulation codes that apply to the LEPC.
- Provides recommendations to the LEPC in regard to regulatory issues.
- Maintains files for SARA Title III reporting.
- Provides support for SARA Title III program.
- Provides updates to LEPC reference filing status .
- Provides or makes available to the community information regarding filing to the extent allowed.
- Provides the membership with relevant information updates for local, state and federal regulations.
G. Grants and Funding
- Reviews grant proposals.
- Provides input for planning grants.
- Provides recommendation and updates to LEPC.
- Prepares grant proposals.