I am writing to you to express my deep concern with the lack of transparency in the Fee Bill. I speak specifically of the increase to the wastewater discharge permit; industrial, non-contact cooling water; maximum fee. Since first seeing the proposed increase of 417% I have contended this fee increase was done as a punitive and vindictive measure designed to make the continued operation of VY as difficult and expensive as possible.
For clarification the proposal is to increase this fee from $105,000 to $545,000, an increase of $438,000 without explanation of justification.
A fee is levied to raise money to pay for the costs of providing a particular service. With this as the basis for my inquiries, several weeks ago, I asked an attorney for ANR to justify the increase in the above mentioned fee. His initial response was the fee was related to the costs of NPDES (National Pollutant Elimination System) permit process. Whereas NPDES permit costs can be billed back to the permit applicant I asked what other justification ANR could have for the fee increase. He told me he would get me the information and justification for the fee. I have yet to receive any justification.
DEC (Department of Environment Conservation) Commissioner David Meers testified before the House Ways and Means Committee that he could provide no information or justification for the fee increase as the administration is claiming attorney client privilege in this matter. After some members of the committee responded negatively to the proposed increase the administration offered to reduce the fee by approximately 200%, but still offers no justification. This is outrageous!
I have written to the House Ways and Means committee to request that they not authorize any increase in the fee without credible justification. Any fee increase must have justification be it a 2%, 200% or 417% increase. No matter who or whom the fee is charged to, or what the fee is for, we can not allow fees or taxes to be levied as punishment
– Representative Mike Hebert (R-Vernon)
Migrant worker policies need fair solution
What we need is a functional Immigration Service!! Farmers cannot get workers paperwork, can’t farm without willing workers.
I am not saying we should declare these workers legal, the Federal government must create a system where honest hard working employed Mexicans, or whoever, can come to the US to work.
To put these workers in the same class as the drug dealing murderers, and lousy welfare cheats with anchor babies, is in itself a CRIME!
Make the government fix this mess, don’t hate the Mexicans for working and supporting their families back home. More Americans should be expected to do the same
– Doug Richmond
Notes & Events
Thursday, March 8, The St. Michael’s College Conservatives are joining with the Vermont John Birch Society to present “Agenda 21 – A Radical Environmentalist Threat to Your Rights.” The featured speaker is Mr. Henry Lampman. 7 – 9 pm, St. Michael’s College, McCarthy Recital Hall.
Saturday, March 17, Rally in Support of Vermont Yankee at the plant gate from 5:00-6:30 pm. This is St Patrick’s Day, so we will work this into our plans. We will have some signs, but please feel free to think about making your own signs, For example: “Celebrating GREEN power on St. Patrick’s Day!” For more information, please contact Howard Shaffer, 603-304-9157 or email@example.com.
Thursday, March 22, Vermonters for Economic Health presents: “A Tale of Two Futures” by Robert Maynard and Tom Licata. The event will involve and examination of Vermont’s economic future and will be held at 6-30-8:00 pm a the Grange Hall in Essex. (116 Center Road, Essex Junction, Vermont Next to Frank’s Motorcycles)