At the Environmental Review Commission (a committee of the legislature) meeting on December 13, 2012, a number of ideas were vetted in advance of consideration for legislation this spring. One such idea was a measure to ensure that developers are held financially liable for sedimentation pollution resulting from their land-disturbing activities. Specifically, the measure would require financial assurance for land disruptions greater than 20 acres to ensure compliance with sedimentation control. A number of acceptable financial mechanisms were specified, including bonds. Financial assurance would be maintained until the site closes.
Representative Mitch Gillespie, who has since resigned his seat in order to be assistant secretary at DENR, recommended that the proposal not be reported out ... and it was not.
Gillespie's move represents the philosophy of the Pope administration at its toxic worst. Instead of requiring private companies to clean up after themselves, these clowns want to place that burden squarely on the shoulders of taxpayers and downstream property homeowners.
Make no mistake, Gillespie is in the pocket of big business, from fracking interests to mountain developers and more.. Nice to see that our oh-so-ethical Assistant Deputy Governor is taking his stewardship responsibilities to heart.