Hi, First two pieces of good news.
Prohibiting Discrimination: The House of Representatives voted today to pass HB 1319, prohibiting discrimination based on gender identity. House Democratic Leader Steve Shurtleff and Representative Ed Butler (D-Harts Location), prime sponsor of HB 1319, said after the vote that, “this is a moment to be proud of the New Hampshire House. No one should be discriminated against in New Hampshire, and the transgender community has suffered unnecessary discrimination for far too long. This legislation will make a meaningful difference to many families in our state, and the House’s support today is truly commendable.
Coakley Landfill: Today, the House voted by wide margins first to overturn the committee recommendation to interim study (essentially kill) and then pass HB1766 by a vote of 2017-118. This bill, sponsored by Representative Mindi Messmer, will be kept alive now and sent to the Senate.
The bill shows the state that Section 93 (2) of the 1999 Consent Decree reserves the state’s authority to act to protect the Seacoast from toxins leaching from the Coakley Landfill Superfund dump. In recent weeks, the sponsors have become aware that $10M in federal and state money was given to the Coakley Landfill Group but the originally planned groundwater treatment system was never installed. Where did the money go? The sponsors of the bill have appealed to the Attorney General and the NH Office of Charitable Trusts for answers about where the money has gone, why financial reports were never submitted and why the group was not audited. The dump is geographically central to a double pediatric cancer cluster and more than 3 times the expected rate of brain and central nervous system cancers in our children or the Seacoast. The bill tells the state to compel the Coakley Landfill Group to put the original remedy in to address threats to groundwater, drinking water and surface water of 5 towns that still exists after decades of inaction. The time to act is now.
This is a clear example that the power of the people can overcome 5 high paid lobbyists, a high paid attorney, and polluters to protect the public health of the people of the state of New Hampshire.
The immediate action: Environmental Action Requested by March 9.
Please complete comments for the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management on oil and gas drilling off the NH coast.
The federal staff behind a proposal to expand offshore drilling in the North Atlantic is conducting meetings. It’s one of the last meetings the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management is hosting around the country this year. The agency’s events in Boston and Providence garnered opposition.
BOEM Strategic Resources chief Renee Orr says she wants people to understand how Interior Sec. Ryan Zinke will finalize his drilling plan.
Comments should be more impactful than ‘I hate oil and gas’ or ‘I love oil and gas,’” Orr says. “That’s really not informative to the decisions that he has to make and the balancing he has to do.”
That balance, she says, is between environment and economy – between the whole country’s buried oil and gas reserves, and local uses of the ocean.
Orr says the comments they get in New Hampshire and nationwide are part of a “winnowing process” for Zinke’s final proposal. It’s due out in December, and she says it may eliminate some areas from consideration.
Please share your personal experiences or thoughts about economic effects on our part of the North Atlantic. Be nice.
Thanks for your help,