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Statewide PA Alert: Oppose SB 1100 / HB 1950

November 17, 2011

UPDATE: As of December 8th, 2011 all the major and grassroots environmental groups in PA stand united in opposition to SB 1100 / HB 1950. This terrible bill strips municipalities of their ability to limit or ban gas drilling, leaving towns powerless to prevent huge multinational corporations from drilling, fracking, processing and transporting toxic substances just a few hundred feet from homes, businesses, playgrounds, schools, public water intakes, private drinking water wells, streams and rivers.

WHAT: Call and write your PA State Rep and PA State Senator

WHAT ELSE: Urge your Republican friends, especially, to do the same. Health is a bipartisan issue.

WHEN: Today, December 8th and until defeated! Vote next week is likely.

WHY: To protect people throughout Pennsylvania and avoid a stripping of municipalities’ right to protect their people from high-volume slickwater hydraulic fracturing with horizontal drilling (fracking) close to homes, schools, playgrounds and streams!

FIND YOUR SENATOR / REP:  go to http://www.seventy.org and call now!  Oppose SB 1100 / HB 1950.

The sample message below, written by The Forest Coalition, may help you formulate your thoughts if you are not up to the minute on this issue.  Please do not be deterred by claims that amendments have made this bill acceptable.  The amendments have done nothing of the sort and do not allow municipalities to place the restrictions they need to place on toxic fracking operations.

Here also is a current quote from Rep. Phyllis Mundy, a House Democrat:

House Finance Committee Minority Chairwoman Phyllis Mundy said that when House Bill 1950 was sent from the committee to the House floor for debate, it was an “extremely weak, ill-conceived bill.”

“Not only do local governments lose control, but there is little in place to protect residents, the environment and property values,” Mundy has said.

HERE IS THE SAMPLE MESSAGE WRITTEN BY THE FOREST COALITION: OPPOSE HB 1950

“I was hoping that some of the proposed amendments would improve the bill to make it palatable.

“That didn’t happen.  The bill falls woefully short.

  • It does not allow local governments to meaningfully protect their citizens from drilling near homes, businesses and schools

 Sadly, amendments from both Republicans and Democrats (and which had strong bi-partisan support) that could have substantially improved the bill were blocked from being considered by the House leadership.

  • I  applaud a number of provisions in the bill, including the removal of language that would have allowed the drillers to pay an extra fee to DEP to allow for the outsourcing of permit reviews to private entities.

But these good provisions are too few and too far between the many giveaways to the drillers, unacceptable threats to our environment.

Please don’t sell Pennsylvania’s taxpayers down the river. Vote “NO” on SB 1100 / HB 1950 !”

This industry is playing roulette with our lives. To them, roulette is a fun and profitable game. They don’t much care who they hurt; 20% of the gas is set for export and the corporations are more than 50% foreign-owned. They cannot be bothered about sick people; they can’t be worried about the fifteen dead and deformed puppies, puppies with missing limbs, in Beth Voyles’ freezer in southwestern PA.

But to us, it’s life and death. Please call and write PA state senators and PA state representatives today, even if you’ve called them before, to defeat SB 1100 / HB 1950. All of the major and grassroots environmental groups stand united against this cowardly legislation. Either they stand up for our health now, or they are out. There is this thing called courage. You’ve got it, even if they don’t.

First, defeat SB 1100 / HB 1950. Then press for a statewide halt in fracking permits. Our people’s health is at stake.

5 Comments
  1. Marina Patrice permalink
    November 18, 2011 11:41 am

    Can you help me understand what I am seeing when I view the bill on the PA state legistlature website? Under HB 1950 it says Last Action: Final passage, November 17, 2011 (107-76). When I view the details it shows 78 Yeas and 107 Nays. Does these mean they voted on the bill yesterday? There are a number of statuses associated with yesterday’s date the most recent one says “Mot Postpone, Vitali”. I tried to google the phrase mot postpone but had not luck. I don’t know what this means.

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