General Meeting on Reapportionment and Initiative|
President's Message (Barbara Farwell)
Public Hearing - HECO's Kahe Power Plant Proposal
LWV Ed Fund: Election, Criminal Justice Projects Planned
Vote Counts: Volunteers Needed
Updated Transportation Position
Conference on Environmental Protection & Inflation
Paired Housing Program
Let's Do Something About It! (Jerry Hess)
Initiative ("Pull and Save")
As all League members must know by now, the League is part of a coalition opposing Hawaiian Electric's request to burn 2% sulfur fuel, and calling on the Environmental Protection Agency for public hearings on that request. Some League members have asked me about our stand, and how we came to this position.
Basically, our action with regard to HECO stems from our national position on clean air, which calls for action "to reduce air pollution from vehicular and stationary sources."* Adopted in 1971, the background statement notes that the League "came out in support of air pollution controls on industrial production, on government installations, on fuels and on vehicles, notwithstanding the higher prices and taxes that might result. The position, which emphasized citizen participation, opened the way for action by all Leagues at state, regional and local levels, as well as action on federal legislation and regulation."
The League has supported the setting of air quality standards by the federal government with local governments able to set more stringent standards; further, the federal government should be able to step in where local governments are not complying with controls.
The background statement concludes by pointing out that "state, local and regional Leagues continue to monitor enforcement of state implementation plans as well as local air quality maintenance plans, challenging infractions that continue uncorrected. They participate in public hearings to oppose easing of air quality standards through compliance variances or extensions and to support compliance with federal or stricter state and local standards for ambient air quality and emission limitations on stationary sources."
The position itself makes two points that are relevant to our action: "Pollution control should be considered a cost of doing business, but citizens as consumers and taxpayers must expect some costs to be passed on to them. The public should participate in decisions on all phases of air pollution control."
The League does not take an action such as this without a position to guide us. The temptation to do so, or to go beyond a position, is always great, and frequently arises. But giving in to such temptation would soon lead to the loss of League integrity and reputation.
Thus we do not take public stands without being absolutely certain we are acting within League positions and principles. Frequently we do far less than we would like because of this. We bend over backwards, if often seems, to stay on firm League ground, at the risk of being labeled too cautious.
Whenever you have questions about any actions, please call me or the appropriate committee chair. The League is YOUR voice in the community.
*All quotes are from IMPACT ON ISSUES, 1980-82, pp 32,33.
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