Wednesday March 7 the House voted by wide margins first to overturn the committee recommendation to interim study (essentially kill) and then pass HB1766 by a vote of 201-118. This bill, sponsored by Representative Mindi Messmer, will be kept alive now and sent to the Senate. I testified before the committee that the Coakley's location is creating fear among our Greenland residents and affecting our property values.
The bill shows the state that Section 93 (2) of the 1999 Consent Decree reserves the state’s authority to act to protect the Seacoast from toxins leaching from the Coakley Landfill Superfund dump.
In recent weeks, the sponsors have become aware that $10M in federal and state money was given to the Coakley Landfill Group but the originally planned groundwater treatment system was never installed. Where did the money go? The sponsors of the bill have appealed to the Attorney General and the NH Office of Charitable Trusts for answers about where the money has gone, why financial reports were never submitted and why the group was not audited.
The dump is geographically central to a double pediatric cancer cluster and more than 3 times the expected rate of brain and central nervous system cancers in our children or the Seacoast. The bill tells the state to compel the Coakley Landfill Group to put the original remedy in to address threats to groundwater, drinking water and surface water of 5 towns that still exists after decades of inaction. The time to act is now.
This is a clear example that the power of the people can overcome 5 high paid lobbyists, a high paid attorney, and polluters to protect the public health of the people of the state of New Hampshire.
A complete report by the Portsmouth Herald is posted below.