Special to HuntingtonNews.Net

Editor:

Will 5000 Signatures Move the [Fayette County] Commission?

Highly radioactive waste is being dumped in Fayette County permitted by the WV Department of Environmental Protection (WVDEP). In just one Lochgelly injection well, for example, the equivalent of 3,606 railroad tanker loads of oil & gas waste has been forced into the ground. Further, the WV DEP is allowing this waste to be dumped into abandoned coal mines. Yet Fayette County hasn't moved to stop this devastation, even though it has authority to do so under ยง7-1-3kk of the West Virginia Constitution.

Over 5000 signatures on a locally-circulated petition have made a difference, however. The Fayette County Commission is finally considering passage of an ordinance that will ban industrial waste dumping in the county.

Will they pass it?

The Mountain Party Draft Ordinance that so many endorsed should have been passed months ago: On May 27, local geologist Brandon Richardson was slated to present it and for some unknown reason was taken off the agenda.

Last week, Nov 13, despite the fact that this ordinance had been given to the Fayette Commissioners in May at a zoning meeting, Chairperson Denise Scalph, publicly claimed it had just been received and the Commissioners needed review time before voting.

The Mountain Party Draft Ordinance has also been available online since May 22. see: mountainpartywv.com/?p=1275.

5000 citizens, voicing their concerns in such a focused petition, can discourage lawsuits and support enforcement when the ordinance is passed. County Commissioners can avoid the damages wrought by permitted, but unregulated, pollution only if they step up. Because of the Fayette County petition, past mistakes allowed by the WV DEP in the communities of Rawl, Merrimac, Sprigg and others, may be avoided.

Barbara Daniels

Richwood

304 618 9096