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Assembly Committee Chairs Take Issue With DEC’s Fracking Regs

Posted By Jon Campbell On December 10, 2012 @ 3:49 pm In Uncategorized | Comments Disabled

The heads of three Assembly committees are out with a new letter today to the Department of Environmental Conservation, urging it to withdraw the state’s latest regulatory proposals for hydrofracking.

Assemblymen Robert Sweeney, Charles Lavine and Richard Gottfried—all Democrats—sent a letter to DEC chief Joseph Martens today, asking him to retract the proposals until the state’s health review of fracking is complete.

At the very least, the three lawmakers ask Martens to double the comment period—which begins Wednesday—from 30 to 60 days. Sweeney heads the environmental conservation committee, Lavine the administrative regulations review committee and Gottfried chairs the health committee.

“If the Department opts to pursue the proposed regulations, additional steps need to be taken to provide the public with greater opportunity for meaningful involvement,” the letter reads. “The current comment period—the mere minimum required by law—is insufficient, given the sheer size of the regulations, the numerous revisions and the complexity of the issues.”

The DEC issued the new regulatory proposals late last month [1] in order to push a deadline into late February. In order to receive the 90-day extension, the new rules have to be put to public comment for at least 30 days.

The three assemblymen also took umbrage with another issue that has perplexed lobbyists on both sides of the fracking debate. When the DEC posted the new proposals, they removed a set of 2011 proposals from their website, making it impossible to compare them unless you had a copy saved.

DEC spokeswoman Emily DeSantis said the 2011 proposals are “available upon request.”

DEC Fracking Regulations [2]


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URL to article: http://polhudson.lohudblogs.com/2012/12/10/assembly-committee-chairs-take-issue-with-decs-fracking-regs/

URLs in this post:

[1] issued the new regulatory proposals late last month: http://www.dec.ny.gov/regulations/77353.html

[2] DEC Fracking Regulations: http://www.scribd.com/doc/116297425/DEC-Fracking-Regulations