Follow-up to Alert 650: Frieda Berryhill’s report: “‘Your Government at Work’ is something to behold !”
In Alert 650: Nutty nuclear schemes to be presented in Legislative Hall–April 9, 2009, 4:00 pm ( http://greendel.org/?p=313 ) we announced this meeting and made some observations on global warming and the need to tell the good ideas from the bad ones.
The actual meeting is described by long-time anti-nuclear activist Frieda Berryhill:
From: “Frieda Berryhill” <frieda302@comcast.
To: “Frieda Berryhill” <email@example.com>
Subject: May day before the DE House Energy Committee
Since there was no “declared procedure a private citizen [Richard Schnieder, working for cooling towers to stop the massive fish kills from the Salem reactors] took the floor and started to speak : “I brought some printouts and I would like to talk about the billions of fish you are killing.” Hardly unable to finish a sentence he was stopped, and told that this matter is not relevant to the subject being discussed.
I was shocked. Here is a private citizen, taking his time to travel there, evidently prepared enough to put his complaint into print, and he was told in essence to “shut up” and sit down.
Perhaps what he had to say was not exactly related to Energy Policy, but common courtesy should have prevailed. (At least to see if he was a “rambler”)
Much to his credit, Allen Muller, the eternal, unpaid guardian of our environment had the gumption to stand up in defense of this Gentleman, but he too was immediately silenced. Incidentally, Allen never got to speak either. (Please Allen share your thoughts with my list I will pass them on)
Then I overheard them whisper my name and I knew that the only reason I will be called upon was because Rep, Kowalko Chair of the Energy Committee WHO WAS NOT PRESENTÂ made sure of it.
First I had some questions:
Since Bechtel was the builder of Hope Creek one, who would get the contract ?
(The reason for this question : French Areva is trying to invade the American market such as Calvert Cliffs) [Site of a proposed additional reactor in Maryland]
They said they did not know and I explained that I did not want Areva’s new reactor (long story).
I asked them if New Jersey allowed Construction Work in Progress (CWIP) which means that the consumer will be the risk taker, since they are then allowed to charge for all costs from the time they beak ground . Thereby making the CONSUMER the involuntary financier, instead of the stockholder or the company.
By the way CWIP is now being fought in about half dozens states.
They said , they did not and had a representative follow me to the parking lot to explain their method of payin
Did I get my say? Yes, but not the way I had planned. All my notes, my indisputable “proof” to counteract the lies they told went “out the window.” I will tell you all about it tomorrow.
“Your Government at Work” is something to behold !
I asked Allen Muller for his impression, and here it is.
Well, Frieda, my thoughts:
Rep. Mulrooney, running the meeting, [substituting for Rep. John Kowalko, who had a conflict] said he’d worked building Hope Creek. (He’s an electrician. The building trades usually love projects like new nuke reactors.)
He commented repeatedly that the PSEG folk shouldn’t be “attacked.”Â (Nobody was attacking them.)
Rep. Pam Thornburg, by any standard one of Delaware’s very worst elected officials, told the PSEG folks “the door is always open in Delaware to your industry,” or something like that.
I told. Rep. Mulrooney after the meeting that I was offended at this treatment of citizens and it looked to me like there was a prior arrangement not to allow any questioning of the PSEG folk.Â He didn’t pretend to care.
I’ve been to Delaware’s Legislative Hall many times. Occasionally I’ve been proud of something that happened there. More times, frankly, I’ve been ashamed. That meeting yesterday was something to be ashamed of. It’s not just that three citizens were treated with disrespect. By implication, ALL citizens were treated with disrespect. Faith Queman used to say “this is the people’s house.” It usually isn’t, especially when energy policy matters are at issue.