Cuomo on fracking decision: “I’m not going to rush anyone”

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Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Wednesday brushed off criticism of his administration’s decision-making process on large-scale hydrofracking, telling reporters the issue is “too important to make a mistake.”

Taking questions after giving a presentation on his budget in Queens, Cuomo was asked to respond to those who have said he’s been indecisive on whether to move forward with fracking. The New York Times’ writeup of Tuesday’s fracking news dubbed him “Hamlet on the Shale.”

From Cuomo’s Q and A:

“We have gone through a deliberative process. People say you should rush; I’m not going to rush anyone. This is too important to make a mistake. If the health commissioner says he needs more time to come to an intelligent conclusion, then he needs more time to come to an intelligent conclusion. Anyone says, well you should force him to rush a deadline, which would be arbitrary, I don’t think that’s prudent and I don’t think that’s right and I won’t do it.”

The state Department of Environmental Conservation first put high-volume fracking on hold in 2008, when it launched a dense, lengthy environmental review. On Tuesday, Cuomo’s administration signaled it would miss a Feb. 27 deadline for finalizing its fracking regulations. But DEC Commissioner Joe Martens said the agency may move to issue permits if they complete the environmental review before the rule-making process is finished.

“What I’ve said all along is I want to take the emotions out of the fracking discussion and substitute facts and information. It is a big decision for the state both ways,” Cuomo said. “There’s an economic upside. If we get it wrong, there could be very serious consequences to the public health. So that’s why you have the strong emotion that you have on both sides.”

Meanwhile, gas-drilling supporters knocked the state for delaying a decision on fracking.

“This latest delay may seem inconsequential in the context of a four-plus year regulatory review process, but it is not when one considers the benefits other states are experiencing,” said Brad Gill, executive director of the Independent Oil & Gas Association of New York. “It’s difficult to determine how the science of safe natural gas development becomes so much more difficult when you cross the border from Pennsylvania to New York. New York may claim to be ‘Open for Business,’ but the only economic sign we see is ‘Keep Out.’”

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  1. If “WATSON” was our Governor and this would all have been decided,

    Run “WATSON” run

    Andrew “Cesare” Cuomo cannot make a decision he is fallen and can’t get UP to make the tough decisions.

    We need leadership and Andrew “Cesare” Cuomo is no longer a “LEADER”

    We need FRACKING and all the good jobs it will provide

    Be Happy with Fracking

    Before there was the “Oracle of Delphi” there was Count Vampire J. Machiavelli

    VJ Machiavelli
    http://www.VJMachiavelli.blogspot.com
    To The Moon, Mars, and Beyond