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Tennessee Clean
Water Network

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Knoxville, TN 37902

Office: 865.522.7007
Fax: 865.525.4988

TCWN legislative updates

April 4th, 2008 by Renée Hoyos

This year we decided that we wanted a greater presence at the legislature, so we are working our bills and also assisting the Tennessee Conservation Voters. We have been following a number of bills. Some needed to be killed and others passed. Here is a quick summary of what we’ve found.

1. By far the worst bill at the legislature this year is a bill called the Limited Resources bill and its amendment (which is still not online). This bill would strip protection of about 30.000 miles of streams by cleverly stating that any stream not meeting its use would be reclassified as a “limited resource water” and unprotected by the state. The waters that do not meet their uses are found on the 303d list. Therefore, that entire list is up for grabs as is the TMDL program that works to make sure those uses are attained. The sponsors are Representative Joe McCord and Senator Steve Southerland . We are working hard to kill this bill. Help us by letting the sponsors and committee members know that you want water protected, not destroyed. Ask them to take this bill off notice.

2. Stop work orders. Currently, TDEC is unable to issue a stop work order on stormwater construction sites. This bill would give them that authority as well as require fines as stated in the water quality control act. Our primary sponsors are Senator Ketron and Representative Buck . Please thank them for supporting good water legislation. This bill is on the calendar to be considered in both the House and Senate Environment committees on April 9. Please call committee members and ask them to vote for this bill.

Senate Environment Committee:

Raymond Finney, Roy Herron, Bill Ketron, Steve Roller, Steve Southerland and Mike Williams

House Environment Committee:

William Baird, Willie Borchert, Richard Floyd, George Fraley, David Hawk, Mike Kernell, Joe McCord, Frank Niceley

3. Scenic Vistas Act: This bill would have prevented mountain top removal in this state. Sadly, it died in the house sub committee on environment.

If you’d like to watch the subcommittee and committee hearings, you may do so at:

I will try to post the latest happenings in the legislature on Thurs, so check back then or if you sign up for our RSS feed, you’ll get a prompt in your email directing you to this blog.

Let me know if you’d like updates on other pieces of legislation or if you have ideas of legislation you’d like us to work on next year.



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