(a)(1) In this section the following words have the meanings indicated...
(3)(i) “Birdwatching” means identifying, studying, and recording the presence of wild birds in their natural surroundings.
(ii) “Birdwatching” does not include incidental sightings of wild birds in their natural surroundings.
Purpose of section
(b) The purpose of this section is to provide a special fund that shall be expended for the preservation of nongame wildlife species and threatened and endangered species.
(c) There is a Birdwatcher's Fund.
Revenue credited to Birdwatcher’s Fund, administration
(d)(1) All revenue that the Department derives from the issuance of birdwatcher's stamps and decals shall be credited to the Birdwatcher's Fund.
(2) The Secretary shall administer the Birdwatcher's Fund.
(3) Money in the Birdwatcher's Fund shall be expended only for the preservation of nongame wildlife species and threatened and endangered species.
Birdwatcher’s stamp or decal, contributions to Fund
(e)(1) The fee for a birdwatcher's stamp or decal is $5.
(2) Private contributions, grants and donations may be made to the Birdwatcher's Fund.
(3) Any person engaged in a retail business who desires to sell birdwatcher's stamps and decals as an agent under the Department's control and supervision shall apply on forms prepared and prescribed by the Department.
(4) An agent may retain 25 cents out of the birdwatcher's stamp or decal fee for each birdwatcher's stamp or decal the agent sells.
(5) The Department, by regulation, shall provide procedures and forms for the sale of birdwatcher's stamps and decals.
Purpose of Fund
(f) The purpose of this Fund is:
(1) Dissemination of information pertaining to nongame wildlife species and threatened and endangered species conservation, management, and values;
(2) Scientific investigation and survey of nongame wildlife species and threatened and endangered species for better protection and conservation;
(3) Propagation, distribution, protection, and restoration of nongame wildlife species and threatened and endangered species;
(4) Research and management of nongame wildlife species and threatened and endangered species;
(5) Development of habitats for nongame wildlife species and threatened and endangered species;
(6) Acquisition of habitats for nongame wildlife species and threatened and endangered species; and
(7) Matching of funds available to the Department under federal programs for projects and activities authorized under this section.
Citation: MD Code, Natural Resources, § 10-2A-06.1.
In general (a) The Secretary shall use the funds credited to the endangered species account under § 1-703 of this subtitle only to promote the conservation, propagation, and habitat protection of nongame, threatened or endangered species, including:
(1) The acquisition, through absolute purchase or the purchase of easements, of habitats necessary to conserve, protect, or propagate nongame, threatened or endangered species;
(2) The monitoring, surveying, and protection of nest sites of bald eagles, Delmarva fox squirrels, peregrine falcons, and piping plovers;
(3) The promotion of voluntary protection of habitat for threatened and endangered species by monitoring information and management assistance to private landowners;
(4) The initiation of surveys and recovery programs, including habitat restoration or protection, for other threatened or endangered species;
(5) The protection of threatened or endangered species in natural heritage areas identified under the Natural Heritage Program;
(6) The surveying of nongame birds, mammals, reptiles, and amphibians not currently receiving review, particularly those species whose population status is questionable, such as the bog turtle;
(7) The development and implementation of an urban wildlife program to provide individuals in urban and suburban areas the opportunity to observe wildlife; and
(8) The development and implementation of a public education and information program to educate the public and school children about wildlife and habitat conservation.
Wildlife conservation programs
(b)(1) In developing the wildlife conservation programs under this section, the Secretary shall solicit the advice of the Threatened and Endangered Species Committee established in the Department.
(2) The Secretary shall obtain recommendations from the Natural Heritage Program in the Department as to implementation of threatened and endangered species conservation programs under this section.
Citation: MD Code, Natural Resources, § 1-705.
Promotions, administrative costs
(a)(1) The Secretary may distribute not more than 5% of the net proceeds of the Fund to a promotional account to be used to promote further donations to the Fund.
(2) Moneys in the Fund may be used for administrative costs calculated in accordance with § 1-103(b)(2) of this title.
Chesapeake Bay Trust, endangered species accounts
(b) After making the distributions allowed under subsection (a) of this section, the Secretary shall distribute the remainder of the net proceeds of the Fund as follows:...
(2) 50% to an endangered species account, to be used only to conserve nongame, threatened and endangered species as provided in § 1-705 of this subtitle.
Citation: MD Code, Natural Resources, § 1-703.
Checkoff on individual income tax return
(a)(1) The Comptroller shall include on the individual income tax return form a checkoff designated as the “State Chesapeake Bay and Endangered Species Fund Contribution”...
Collection, accounting, and distribution of checkoff contributions
(b) The Comptroller shall:...
(3) after the distribution under item (2) of this subsection, distribute the remainder of the money collected under this subsection to the Chesapeake Bay and Endangered Species Fund established under § 1-702 of the Natural Resources Article.
Citation: MD Code, Tax - General, § 2-110.