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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Pollution and hunt/fish opportunities are directly related. This SB252 is a direct attack against the quality of hunting and fishing.

Governor Granholm has reportedly threatened to veto SB252 if it is passed by the House. She should. SB252 is blatant corruption by the Republican political prostitutes for polluter money.

Governor discusses fees for companies that discharge pollutants
http://www.freep.com/news/latestnews/pm18395_20040210.htm

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: Sen. Liz Brater (D-Ann Arbor)
February 10, 2004 , (517) 373-2406

DEMOCRATS OPPOSE REPUBLICAN VERSION OF POLLUTER FEE PROPOSAL

LANSING * In a strong statement from the Senate floor today, Sen. Liz Brater (D-Ann Arbor) staunchly defended her 'No' vote on SB252 (a bill she introduced early last year), stating that in its current form, the bill violates the original budget agreement negotiated last October. The bill was passed out of conference committee earlier today along strict party lines. The Senate approved the bill by a 21-17 vote. "Let me make it very clear that I still firmly believe that costs for environmental monitoring should be paid, not from the General Fund, not by the taxpayers, but by those who are responsible for the polluting," said Brater.

Sen. Brater and the rest of her Democratic colleagues voted no in response to House recommendations that the bill to charge fees to National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit holders include an exemption for specific farms totaling tens of thousands of dollars. This additional cost would be transferred to the City of Detroit. The House version would also remove the rule promulgation requirement from the DEQ, which threatens to put Michigan out of compliance with federal requirements. "DEQ Director Steve Chester has stated that this action could result in the program reverting to the EPA regional office Chicago," indicated Brater. This legislation was originally part of the FY 2003 budget compromise.

-more-BRATER 2 of 2

During the conference committee debate, Sen. Brater and Rep. Steve Tobocman (D-Detroit) offered two amendments to the report that would have preserved the bill's original intent that polluters help pay the cost of clean-up by removing the House-proposed exemption for agriculture and restoring the rule promulgation authority of the DEQ. The bill has been stalled in conference committee ever since the legislature was unable to resolve differences between House and Senate versions of the bill.

"All sides know that this was an agreement reached during last year's budget compromise, negotiated in the spirit of good faith and accountability," said Senate Democratic Leader Bob Emerson (D-Flint). "Yet we're still haggling one year later, while a new budget crisis looms in the coming weeks."

The NPDES was established by Congress in 1972 to monitor and discourage waste discharge into the nation's lakes and rivers. Michigan is one of only eight states nationwide that currently requires taxpayers to pay the costs of polluters who jeopardize state lakes, rivers and streams and the only Great Lakes State to do so.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
An email sent for this forum:

Senate Bill 252 has passed the House. It passed in the Senate yesterday. This bill was originally designed to provide badly needed funding for the State's water quality program, which is nearly out of money. However, two bad amendments have turned this into a bill that would cripple the DEQ's ability to enforce Michigan's water quality program. The Governor knows this and has promised to veto the bill - which she is now forced to do.

Governor Granholm needs to hear from as many Michigan citizens as possible to support her decision to veto. The legislature has sent a clear message that they support the interests of corporate Republican polluters rather than Michigan's citizens and its precious water resources. The Governor needs to be able to say that she vetos the bill on behalf of thousands of citizens who have contacted her office in support of her action. The more calls the better, so if you know of other people who are not polluting Republicans, forward this email and ask them to contact her office as well.

Please stand behind our Governor who is standing up against the interests of Republicn polluters and a legislature that clearly doesn't care about Michigan.

Governor Jennifer Granholm:
(517) 335-7858 (Constituent Services - you can leave a message)
FAX (517) 335-6863
Or - email the governor's environmental advisor, Dana Debel at
[email protected]
 

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E-Mail sent
Fax sent.
Thanks for the heads up.
 

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WOW HR you spun this one so bad I cant believe your head is still on.

Your own reference articles don’t support your claims. I have researched this one from all angles and the only reason the Governor is against it is because she thinks the DEQ is going to loose to much power. The legislators want more control in decision making. We elect the legislators not the DEQ appointees so I would prefer the legislators to have the power.

The bill is going to add a fee to industry for discharging pollutants that they have not had to pay before. How does this equate into the corrupt republicans with industry in their pockets? The other complaint the dems have is they are going to loose money because the bill is going to leave out the farmers. Looks like the republicans are for the little guy and the dems are for the money. Do you really think the farmers are going to be able to pay? Just trying to prove that the extra nitrogen say going into a river is from a particular farm would cost so much money that the fine wouldn’t cover it.

Gee we are worried about 10’s of thousands of dollars that we would loose from the farmers? Let us dissolve the DEQ and divvy up their responsibilities thru out the state government. Now we are talking savings. Oh no that would mean some state employee would have to work 35 instead of 30 hours in a week. :eek:
 

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Been there, read them, before I made my first post. Why do you think I made the statement I did?

I would like nothing more than you to prove my statement as wrong. Then I might even think all the partial news I have been seeing from you has some validity. Use facts out of the legislature web pages you posted to prove your argument. You keep using peoples opinions on a topic as if it was a fact of the topic. Or should we change this forum to Outdoor Opinion?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
From Capitol Update - 2/6/04

Permits to pollute -- train wreck waiting to happen SB 252

-- After four and half months conferees finally met and jammed a bad bill out of the conference committee on Tuesday. The bill, working off the House version, transferred about $75,000 (out of a total of $3 million) in the proposed fees onto municipal sources (a $40,000 increase to the Detroit Water Utility). The provision which makes the bill unacceptable to the department (and have resulted in Governor Granholm saying she will veto the bill), requires that the MDEQ receive prior legislative authority before writing any new administrative rules. The Democrats on the committee did not sign the conference report (Brater and Tobocman). The Senate passed it 21-17 (along party lines except that Sen. Sanborn voted against the conference report), that House approved it 55-46 (with five Republicans voting against it -- Brandenburg, Gaffney, LaSata, Hune and Stewart).

The bottom line: We elected Jennifer Granholm as Governor -- to run the executive branch and implement the law that are on the books in Michigan. What Senator Sikkema and Speaker Johnson are trying to do is allow special interests to block regulation (or updated regulation) of their facilities -- the loser will be the waters of Michigan.
 

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Don’t forget we elect our senators and representatives along with the governor to run our state. It is all of them put together that are to make the decisions for us. Checks and balances as it is called. I see this bill as a power struggle between the legislator and the DEQ more than anything. I want to keep the decision making on environmental, hunting and fishing rights etc. in an accountable arena such as the legislative branch. No doubt there is corruption everywhere HR but if we keep the decision power in an elect able arena we have some recourse to stop it. Look at what the DEQ did for you and I on White Lake with the marina. They had the power and we had no recourse. You have the same issue in the courts today by judges making law. Again it is law by people we don’t elect. Bad scenario! This is why the republicans want to be able to oversight the DEQ. :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Ranger Ray -"They had the power and we had no recourse. You have the same issue in the courts today by judges making law. Again it is law by people we don’t elect. Bad scenario! This is why the republicans want to be able to oversight the DEQ."

Ranger Ray memory is correct here. City Montague remembers well the corruption of the Administrative Law Judge and remembers the "Friday night massacre" as the pinnicle of Republican corruption in the Engler administration. DEQ Hal Harrington (a controlled Engler Republican) had a public hearing in Montague where the speakers were recorded as 50 to 1 against the Ellenwood Landing Marina. The 1 Ellenwood supporter was a bikecycle tourist passing through town that just likes to look at sailboats and admitted he had no idea what the issues were. Harrington knew he could not get pass the public opposition, so instead of meeting with the planned Monday schedule with City Montague, Harrington had a secret meeting with Jon Rooks of the marina on previous Friday night and they approved the marina in secret. The city showed up later on Monday and found there was no meeting and the deal was done! The Engler corruption was at its high during those years and that Ellenwood Landing Marina was the reason I received the death threats and my family lived in fear. That marina did as much permanent damage to White Lake as the chemical companies. Today you can buy the Ellenwood condos and boat slips so cheap they couldn't even get rid of them at auction. I was right when I testified in 1989 and I'm still right today, but the permanent damage is done and I'm still alive. The city Montague is very sorry for the grave mistake of Ellenwood Landing Marina.

Note how history repeats itself. Some of the Ellenwood developer gang have regrouped and is today doing the same step by step destruction and lawsuits with City Spring Lake in the lower Grand River with Bayou Meadows condos/marina. Same story - different town.
Also another history repeat. Nugent Sand discharge into Lake Michigan. The ALJ blatantly ruled that the 36" pipe and tons of limestone breakwall rock across the beach to Lake Michigan "is not a sructure"! He is tying hard to aid the developers. Did you know all those limestone structures around the Great Lakes "are not structures"? Damn, another corrupt ALJ, just like under the Engler administration.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
From a email:

Below is a media release regarding a letter sent to State Senator Sikkema, signed by 40 groups and the letter itself. The letter ask Sikkema to do what he can to pass good, viable clean water legislation.

For Immediate Release

Contacts:
Cyndi Roper, Clean Water Action
(517) 490-1394
Anne Woiwode, Sierra Club, Mackinac Chapter (517)
484-2372
Kate Madigan, PIRGIM
(517) 485-5029

Protection of the Great Lakes Should be a Bipartisan Effort
Groups urge Legislative Republican Leaders to Stop Undermining
Program to Protect the Lakes

Lansing, Feb. 18,'04 - Michigan's public health and the Great Lakes are threatened by a bill passed by the Legislature last week. SB 252 opens the door for increased pollution and weakened enforcement of the Clean Water Act and state environmental laws. That is the message of a letter from community and environmental groups from across the state to State Senator Ken Sikkema and Speaker Rick Johnson. Groups ranging from religious organizations such as Plymouth United Church of Christ of Grand Rapids to union chapters like UAW Region 1A Toxic Waste Squad, Local 898 signed the open letter that was delivered to the leaders today. "We knew we could gather broad support from all over Michigan once folks knew the health of the Great Lakes is at stake," said Tom Leonard of the West Michigan Environmental Action Council. "Political agendas pale in comparison to our need for clean water for drinking, swimming and fishing." Had SB 252 been passed as lawmakers promised, it would have lifted a burden from state taxpayers and helped plug the hole in our state budget. The bill would have charged polluters user fees and used that money to help regulate waste flow into the Great Lakes. But, Senator Sikkema and other legislative leaders added a rider that poisoned the bill. The rider would limit the ability of the MDEQ to do its job overseeing polluters. "To protect our waterways, the Governor has no choice but to veto this bill," said Cyndi Roper of Clean Water Action. Unfortunately, this will leave Michigan as the only state in the Great Lakes where permits to discharge pollutants into our waters is free. Without the funding, facilities will operate without oversight, placing our lakes, beaches and drinking water at risk. This could mean a costly federal takeover of the program that would be bad for businesses and the environment. "Clean water is the bottom line here," said Lana Pollack of Michigan Environmental Council. "We'd like Senator Sikkema to fulfill his promise to pass this law with no strings. The state budget needs the money it would bring and businesses need the more streamlined government operations." Legislative leaders want to place limitations on Governor Granholm and her administration that would make it more difficult to protect our water. The limitations would aid special interests who don't want the department to update water standards or regulate new
sources of pollution that are fouling the waters of our state. "This is a train wreck waiting to happen," said James Clift of the Michigan Environmental Council (MEC). "Lawmakers tell us they want clean water and to lessen government red tape. Then they add unnecessary requirements designed to aid polluting facilities. Something's desperately wrong."
###

The Letter to Sen. Sikkema

February 13, 2004

Senate Majority Leader
Senator Ken Sikkema
S-106 Capitol Lansing, Michigan

Re: SB 252 - Water Discharge Permits Fees

Dear Senator Sikkema:

Michigan's lakes, rivers and streams and the Great Lakes that surround us are our greatest natural treasure. This resource provides millions in state revenue through tourism and fishing and is the drinking water source for millions in the Great Lakes region. Unfortunately, SB 252 as passed threatens to undermine Michigan's ability to protect waterways from pollution.

The undersigned groups urge you reconsider your decision that has blocked passage of the bill designed to eliminate free permits to pollute. Your caucus' insistence to include a provision regarding rulemaking authority is an unnecessary and irresponsible move that will weaken the state's ability to protect the public from health threats and the Great Lakes from pollution.

The legislature has more than ample avenues to exercise its oversight responsibility and discharge its duties under the Michigan Constitution (Art IV, Sec 52) to protect Michigan's natural resources. These include the ability to override a rule by enacting new legislation or acting through the budget process to adequately fund protection programs.

Michigan families expect you to fulfill your promise, which is included in Public Act 171 of 2003, to enact water discharge fees of at least $3 million without strings attached. Given the state's precarious budget situation and the importance of protecting water resources to Michigan's future, resolving this issue should be a high priority for all who care about the Great Lakes.

Sincerely,

Lana Pollack, President
Michigan Environmental Council

Doug Van Doren, Pastor
Plymouth United Church of Christ of Grand Rapids

Thomas Leonard, Executive Director
West Michigan Environmental Action Council

Rev. Nurya Love Parish, Pastoral Care Minister
Fountain Street Church (Grand Rapids)

Karen Bednarek
Muskegon Save Our Shoreline

Alison and David Swan
Concerned Citizens for Saugatuck Dunes State Park

Dayle Harrison, President
Kalamazoo River Protection Association

Tanya Cabala, Michigan Director
Lake Michigan Federation

Elizabeth Harris, Executive Director
East Michigan Environmental Action Council

Wil Cwikiel, Program Director
Tip of the Mitt Watershed Council

Joyce Petrakovitz, Director
Cadillac Area Citizens for Clean Air (CACCA)

Ken Dahlberg, Chair
Michigan Land Trustees of America

Terry Miller, Chairman
Lone Tree Council

Lorna D. McEwen, President
Oakland Land Conservancy

Joe Briggs, President
Indian Lake Association

Phyllis Higman and Christopher Graham
Michigan Natural Areas Council

Rich Robinson, Executive Director
Michigan Campaign Finance Network

Jeff Irwin, Executive Director
Michigan League of Conservation Voters

Cyndi Roper, State Director
Clean Water Action

Anne Woiwode, State Director
Mackinac Chapter Sierra Club

Brian Imus
Public Interest Research Group in Michigan (PIRGIM)

Lisa Wozniak
League of Conservation Voters Education Fund

Patrick Kochanny, President
Pine River Area Chapter of Trout Unlimited

Wayne J. Groesbeck, President
Michigan Anglers Association

Rod Hill, Chair
Michigan Citizens Against Toxic Substances

Auddie (Glen) Shelby Jr, Chairman
UAW Region 1A Toxic Waste Squad, Local 898

Dwayne Watkins, Lead Organizer
Michigan Organizing Project -- Grand Rapids Chapter

Jeff Smith, Director
Grand Rapids Institute for Information Democracy

E. John Trimberger, President
Michigan Division and the Dwight Lydell Chapter of the Izaak Walton League
of America

Richa
Radiant Justice Implementation Group (Grand Rapids)

Rick Gamber, Executive Director
Michigan Consumer Federation

James N. Bull, Ph.D., President
Detroit Audubon Society

Amy Carpenter Leugs
Plymouth United Church of Christ Peace and Justice Task Force

Norman Bendroth
St. John's United Church of Christ

Rob Cedar, Director
Hamtramck Environmental Action Team

Guy Bazzani
Bazzani Associates

Barbara Gilmore Weber, President
Friends of the Crystal River
Virginia Pierce
Michigan Resource Stewards

Mike Walker, Co-Chair
UAW-GM Local-730 Conservation Committee

Tom Schwallie
People's Alliance for Justice and Change

Kim Hunter
Media Coordinator
Sierra Club, Mackinac Chapter
2727 Second Avenue, Room 318
Detroit, MI 48201

Phone 313-965-0055
Fax 313-965-0053
[email protected]
 

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. "Political agendas pale in comparison to our need for clean water for drinking, swimming and fishing."
No really. Now for the political spin.
The rider would limit the ability of the MDEQ to do its job overseeing polluters.
No! It would limit their ability to set the fine for said polluter.
." Legislative leaders want to place limitations on Governor Granholm and her administration that would make it more difficult to protect our water.
Waite! Heaven forbid the governor and her administration have CHECKS AND BALANCES ON THEM!

Definition of Republic = a state or nation in which the supreme power rests in all the citizens entitled to vote and is exersized by representatives elected, directly or indirectly, by them and responsible to them.

Note the definition is plural not singular. Not one elected governor and their appointed administration.
The rider would limit the ability of the MDEQ to do its job overseeing polluters. "To protect our waterways, the Governor has no choice but to veto this bill," said Cyndi Roper of Clean Water Action.
Note who is vetoing the bill!
"Clean water is the bottom line here," said Lana Pollack of Michigan Environmental Council.
Your caucus' insistence to include a provision regarding rulemaking authority is an unnecessary
Waite! I thought the clean water was the bottom line not authority.
The bill would have charged polluters user fees and used that money to help regulate waste flow into the Great Lakes. But, Senator Sikkema and other legislative leaders added a rider that poisoned the bill.
Note the blame on the legislators and past tense of the bill. And the bill was poisoned how? Because the MDEQ cant set the fees.
Remind me again what is the most important thing here. Oh yea its the clean water. I think the Democrats forgot.
This could mean a costly federal takeover of the program that would be bad for businesses and the environment.
WOW! I am not even going to go there. Feel lucky.
Lawmakers tell us they want clean water and to lessen government red tape. Then they add unnecessary requirements designed to aid polluting facilities
Not once did they show how the legislator is aiding polluting facilities.

I fail to see any evidence or facts that show any reason beyond the usual politics for the veto. Three times including Granholmes own admision the veto's reason is because of the legislators wanting to have control over the fines. The sad thing here is how opinions and innuendos can be slanted to appear as facts. That is dangerous. ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Yes, the Republican politicians thank you Ray for supporting the Republican policy that money can buy off pollution protection corruption contrary to protecting public health.
 

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Yes, the Republican politicians thank you Ray for supporting the Republican policy that money can buy off pollution protection corruption contrary to protecting public health.
Wow! Been holding that in HR? I thought you might respond with facts. But there isn't much you stated or quoted in this thread that deals with facts is there.

Your hatred and contempt for the republicans is starting to effect your thinking.

Your statement supports what I thought all along. This veto is about political power not the environment. Thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Rule-making demands really just a power grab

"To justify an attempt to hijack Department of Environmental Quality rule-making authority, Senate Majority Leader Ken Sikkema last week pontificated that it would be "irresponsible" for Republicans to do anything less.

It would have been amusing to see Sikkema try that same line on Gov. John Engler.

Presumably, legislators had just as much of a "responsibility" to control DEQ rule-making then as they say they do now. But not a one of them would have put his political career on the line by trying to strip the Engler administration of that authority."

http://www.record-eagle.com/2004/feb/021704.htm
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Email response:

Waite! Who wrote that? Dan Quayle?

It didn't limit the ability to fine, it required that the administrative rules of the DEQ be approved by the legislators. That's how it aided the polluters. It's the Republican legislature that doesn't want checks and balances on them, but rather is attempting to remove all power from the governor now that we have one that's not anti-environment. They are out of control and we should vote every single one of them out of office in November.
 
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