A. In this chapter, the following terms have the meanings indicated.
B. Terms Defined.
(1) “Agricultural Certainty”, “Certainty”, or “Program” means the Maryland Agricultural Certainty Program.
(2) “Agricultural operation” or “operation” means a business or activity where a person tills, crops, keeps, pastures, or produces an agricultural product, including livestock, poultry, plants, trees, sod, food, feed, or fiber by in-ground, out-of-ground, or other culture.
(3) “Agricultural sources of nitrogen, phosphorus, or sediment” means sources of nitrogen, phosphorus, or sediment that originate from an agricultural operation’s land or animals. This does not include sources of nitrogen, phosphorus, or sediment that originate from residential, municipal, industrial, or a commercial activity.
(4) “Best management practice” or “BMP” means a conservation or pollution control practice that manages soil loss due to farming practices or manages animal wastes or agricultural chemicals so as to minimize movement of nitrogen, phosphorus, and sediment into waters of the State.
(5) “Certainty agreement” means a written agreement between the owner or operator of an agricultural operation and the Department, as provided under this chapter.
(6) “Certified verifier” means an individual certified by the Department under this chapter to review, inspect, and evaluate conditions, records, and management of an operation for purposes of qualifying for and maintaining compliance with the Maryland Agricultural Certainty Program.
(7) “Department” or “MDA” means Maryland Department of Agriculture.
(8) “Department of the Environment” or “MDE” means the Maryland Department of the Environment.
(9) “Farm parcel” means agricultural land that is separately described by deed or tax parcel.
(10) “Holds an interest” means a person who:
(a) Has any ownership interest or any other legal or equitable interest in an operation;
(b) Has any outside employment relationship with the owner or operator of the operation; or
(c) Has a relationship to the owner or operator of the agricultural operation as spouse, parent, child, sibling, grandchild, grandparent, step-parent, step-child, step-sibling, step-grandchild, or step-grandparent.
(11) “Interfamily transfer” means a transfer of ownership or management of an operation between or among individuals who have a familial relationship including parent, spouse, child, sibling, grandchild, grandparent, step-parent, step-child, step-sibling, step-grandchild, or step-grandparent.
(12) “Maryland Nutrient Tracking Tool” or “MNTT” means a Department-approved online platform with a performance-based calculation component that enables users to analyze agricultural parcels and their management to determine baseline compliance with the more stringent of the nutrient loading baselines outlined in either the Chesapeake Bay Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) for each watershed or the local TMDL that has been adopted for an impaired water body including Watershed Implementation Plan goals and any other nitrogen, phosphorus, and sediment control requirements. Through site- and operation-specific data inputs, the calculation component can generate multiple management scenarios and compute the nutrient reductions achieved by the application of agricultural best management practices.
(13) “Nutrient management plan” or “NMP” means a plan that complies with the requirements of COMAR 15.20.07 and 15.20.08 that is prepared by a certified nutrient management consultant to manage the amount, placement, timing, and application of manure, fertilizer, biosolids, or other plant nutrients in order to:
(a) Minimize nutrient loss or runoff; and
(b) Maintain the productivity of soil when growing agricultural products.
(14) “Person” means the State, any county, municipal corporation, or other political subdivision of the State, or any of their units, or an individual, receiver, trustee, guardian, executor, administrator, fiduciary, or representative of any kind, or any partnership, firm, association, public or private corporation, or any other entity, unless otherwise provided.
(15) “Soil conservation and water quality plan” or “SCWQP” means a farm plan approved by a local soil conservation district to minimize soil erosion and to minimize the movement of sediment, animal waste, nutrients, or agricultural chemicals into waters of the State.
(16) “Total maximum daily load” or “TMDL” means an estimate set in accordance with Clean Water Act requirements which establishes the amount of a particular pollutant, in this case nitrogen, phosphorus, or sediment inputs, that a water body can assimilate and still meet water quality standards.
(17) “Watershed Implementation Plan” or “WIP” means a plan required by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for achieving the pollution reduction goals and allocations necessary in implementing the Chesapeake Bay TMDL.