Indoor Environments and Green Buildings Policy Resource Center
Green Cleaning in Schools:
Developments in State Policy
Citation: Md. Education Code § 5-112(e) (Maryland 2009 House Bill 1363)
Effective: October 1, 2009
Summary: This law (as amended by 2012 Md. House Bill 1019) requires each county board of education to procure green product cleaning supplies, pursuant to board-developed specifications that allow multiple avenues to achieve green product cleaning supply certification.
- Requirements for Using Green Cleaning Products. This law requires county boards of education to procure green product cleaning supplies for use in schools, to the extent practicable and economically feasible. The law defines "green product cleaning supplies" as those that perform well and that have positive health and environmental attributes (including "lesser or reduced effects on human health and the environment").
- Guidelines and Specifications.The law does not establish or require state guidelines or specifications for local purchasing of green cleaning products. Rather, each county board of education is required to adopt written policies that: require the use of green product cleaning supplies; establish purchasing guidelines that meet third-party certification standards; establish green cleaning practices; and require staff training. The counties must develop specifications that allow "multiple avenues to obtain green product cleaning supplies certification," including Green Seal, Green Label, Environmental Choice, Terra Choice or EcoLogo, or any other nationally recognized independent third-party entity that certifies environmentally preferable products.
- Exceptions.The law requires the use of green cleaning products to the extent practicable and economically feasible, and explicitly does not prohibit boards from using already-inventoried cleaning supplies until those supplies are exhausted.