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madcrabber1113
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« on: April 07, 2008, 02:26:35 PM »

State must get involved in cleanup


By State Rep. Scott Perry, March 19, 2008

Last updated: Sunday, March 23, 2008 12:07 AM EDT

Recently Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Secretary Kathleen McGinty released an editorial claiming there was a lot of heat and little light being shed on the Chesapeake Bay cleanup role for Pennsylvania. In my opinion, the DEP has been responsible for most of the heat, while shedding very little light or meaningful leadership on the situation.

I do agree that we need to do our part to help clean up. Itís easy for the secretary to be critical, but this administration canít say itís about priorities when it hasnít done anything but issue edicts and unfunded mandates.

As for public input, I believe the 200 so-called public meetings were held well after the mandates from DEP were being handed down. These meetings were, in many cases, between a few individuals and were held well after the strategy was determined. It seems like the only people who can remember an intense stakeholder process are department members; otherwise, there would be meeting minutes available to buttress their claim.

The secretary is correct when stating that sewage plants arenít the only areas being regulated. However, those hooked up to the plants are the only ones being forced to pay for this wildly expensive adventure in feel-goodism. Folks using on-lot systems, agriculture, and two-thirds of the state are simply not involved unless they volunteer in some way. And whatís worse, even after an estimated billion dollars in spending, our waterways and the Chesapeake Bay will be in pretty much the same sad condition.

The secretary notes that Gov. Ed Rendellís response to funding needs for the bay program is to convene a task force to talk about sewer and water infrastructure needs throughout the state, while blaming the federal government and President George W. Bush for the lack of money. The fact is that with the passage of House Resolution 88 in 2005, the General Assembly began a thorough study of such infrastructure needs. Not once since his inauguration in 2003 has the governor mentioned the funding issue. While the federal cut only amounted to $43 million in loan programs, Rendellís cut was $324 million in grant programs. McGinty complains about a federal mandate the state has to pay for and then hands down a state mandate that municipalities have to pay for. She also is critical of former Gov. Tom Ridge for signing the multi-state compact. Donít forget, Pennsylvania has been a signatory to the bay agreements since 1985, long before Tom Ridge became governor.

Admonishing attorneys who have been hired by municipalities to help them understand, comply with, and financially afford the complexities of the bay cleanup program which theyíve been forced to accept as an unfunded mandate isnít helpful either. Does anyone really believe that municipalities would be suing over a compliance plan they themselves created? These accusations are directed at the same citizens who simply want to do their part to clean up our waters and the bay responsibly and affordably.

More chatter from DEP and the self-appointed ďinfrastructure governorĒ and his ďletís- talk-about-it-task-forceĒ is too little, too late. The bills are coming due now and our water is not getting much cleaner. Rendell and McGinty have known for five years the bay impact was going to be expensive, yet in all the time and in all his bloated budgets, the governor has never cooperated with the Legislature to identify a funding source to help address this.

I personally sent a letter to the secretary requesting clarification on several bay issues last December. Now it is three months later and thereís no response to a member of the General Assembly seeking information on one of the biggest issues facing many of his constituents. I had asked DEP for information it was obligated to provide to the House and Senate two years ago. Specifically, the report required DEP to address costs, funding, public participation, and alternative approaches to compliance. The answers have not materialized.

Since continuing to wait was not a responsible option, I have been working the past few months with affected citizens, interested groups and members of the General Assembly to arrive at an affordable, effective solution. Maryland and Virginia have invested hundreds of millions into their programs and are continuing to do so. I will soon be introducing a bill in the House to address Pennsylvaniaís plan for sewage treatment plants, agriculture, industry and commerce. Interestingly, it is getting a lot of positive attention from business and industry, municipalities, environmental groups and citizens. They all realize the current strategy is not affordable or effective.

Instead of finger-pointing, name-calling and empty rhetoric, I hope that McGinty and Rendell will step up and lend their support to help us all move forward in providing some realistic leadership to solve this challenge responsibly.

State Rep. Scott Perry represents portions of York and Cumberland counties in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives.

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« Reply #1 on: April 07, 2008, 02:58:15 PM »

Thank you for posting all these great articles and reports, mc. Would you mind appending the web links also? Cheesy
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madcrabber1113
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« Reply #2 on: April 07, 2008, 03:14:41 PM »

Thank you for posting all these great articles and reports, mc. Would you mind appending the web links also? Cheesy
Sure if I knew what that meant.  laugh I'm computer literate challenged as you can tell.
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« Reply #3 on: April 07, 2008, 05:03:04 PM »

Scott Perry represents the area that includes Hanover, PA, which also happens to be the only York County municipality involved in the PMMA "lawsuit" against PADEP.  I think I mentioned before about the good ole boy mentality of this mess.
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« Reply #4 on: April 08, 2008, 01:48:28 AM »

Here's an idea, let's build a multi million dollar Soccer Stadium a few feet from the Delaware River in PA.  I'm sure that's the best thing to do in a city where it seems more homes are collapsing than not.  That's exactly what the city of Chester needs.  It will definitely take the minds off of the majority of people whom are unemployed, or whom may have just lost one or more loved ones by the hands of a murderer, and I'm absolutely positive that an area of people whom have the highest respect for each other and their property will not ever think of hanging out there or nearby at night disposing any litter on the ground or just right into the water.   I walk down there a few times a week along the river and the they are leveling the ground just a few feet from the waters edge.  So close that you can throw bottle after bottle into the water without braking a single one.  I actually get sad thinking about what the area is gonna look like in a few yrs.  Sorry, just rambling I guess.  I'm sure it's gonna do nothing but help the river right?  Cry
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« Reply #5 on: April 08, 2008, 11:00:00 AM »

Here's an idea, let's build a multi million dollar Soccer Stadium a few feet from the Delaware River in PA.  I'm sure that's the best thing to do in a city where it seems more homes are collapsing than not.  That's exactly what the city of Chester needs.  It will definitely take the minds off of the majority of people whom are unemployed, or whom may have just lost one or more loved ones by the hands of a murderer, and I'm absolutely positive that an area of people whom have the highest respect for each other and their property will not ever think of hanging out there or nearby at night disposing any litter on the ground or just right into the water.   I walk down there a few times a week along the river and the they are leveling the ground just a few feet from the waters edge.  So close that you can throw bottle after bottle into the water without breaking a single one.  I actually get sad thinking about what the area is gonna look like in a few yrs.  Sorry, just rambling I guess.  I'm sure it's gonna do nothing but help the river right?  Cry

IMO you are absolutely on target about this; the stadium is a stupid, indulgent idea, and doomed to utter failure. But you know, this is typical of politicians going back to Roman times. You will recall that the Roman poet Juvenal made the trenchant observation, "At nunc, duas res tantas amavit Populus Romanus: panem et circenses." This means, "Two things only the people actually desire, (instead of caring about their freedom): bread and circuses." Another way of saying this is: "Parva leves capiunt animas" (small things for small minds). This is not to say that there is anything wrong with enjoying sports - after all, both the Greeks & Romans loved physical games - but politicians believe that the masses are too unsophisticated to care about anything else. You folks in Chester Co. should be up in arms about this colossal waste of taxpayer dollars. Angry

« Last Edit: April 08, 2008, 11:02:17 AM by Pinchy » Logged

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« Reply #6 on: April 09, 2008, 01:29:22 AM »

IMO you are absolutely on target about this;

Wait a sec? You agree with me?  Now I'm not so sure......   Grin  (Must have been a full moon)

You will recall that the Roman poet Juvenal made the trenchant observation, "At nunc, duas res tantas amavit Populus Romanus: panem et circenses

That's weird!!! I was just about to say the same thing!!!  But than I realized that I wouldn't even my own post.  Undecided

Another way of saying this is: "Parva leves capiunt animas"
Thanks....wait, hmmmm

but politicians believe that the masses are too unsophisticated to care about anything else. You folks in Chester Co. should be up in arms about this colossal waste of taxpayer dollars. Angry

Real quick, in all seriousness it's not Chester County it's still Delaware County but it's the "city" of Chester.  Personally I'd say it's an act of desperation for the local gov to make a few dollars since the city itself isn't making money on the guys selling weed on the corners and most of the shops are closed down and if you look around there are allot of areas where most of the houses are falling down or abandoned, they aren't bringing in a full purse in property taxes.  I'd love to hit the lottery and literally buy most of Chester and start it over from scratch.  It's an area which has seen rock bottom and with some exceptions hasn't been able to bounce back.  If a person had the right amt of money and a few ideas there are endless possibilities, the stadium being one of them.  IT will have a nice view of the river but I get nauseous at the thought of what effect it will have on the water quality.
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« Reply #7 on: April 09, 2008, 01:16:44 PM »

Real quick, in all seriousness it's not Chester County it's still Delaware County but it's the "city" of Chester. 

Thanks for the correction! Cuiusvis hominis est errare; nullius nisi insipientis in errore perseverare.

There may be more involved in this than just Chester City or Delaware County. If the state of PA is also using taxpayer money to fund this white elephant, citizens throughout should strenuously object and insist that the money be invested in roads and agricultural programs to benefit all of us - not just a handful of wanna-be soccer enthusiasts. On the other hand, if the soccer team does better than the Eagles - not a difficult task - it may gain more fans than expected. Grin
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« Reply #8 on: April 09, 2008, 02:24:19 PM »

Guess we will have to wait and see. alto the race track and gambling place.  in Chester is doing quite well. Hope for the best.  Wink
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