Gov. Veto Of GenX Bill Draws Praise, Criticism

Sep 21, 2017

On Thursday North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper vetoed House Bill 56. That’s the Republican-sponsored environmental bill that includes funding for Cape Fear Public Utility Authority and the University of North Carolina Wilmington to research GenX.  The bill has more than GenX in its sights.

Republican Representative Larry Yarborough first filed Bill 56 in February. It doesn’t include any funding for Cooper’s $2.6 million request for perpetual monitoring for GenX, the restoration of 16 regulator positions to the Department of Environmental Quality and the formation of a water safety unit at the Department of Health and Human Services.

District 2 Representative Yarborough is from Person and Granville County, above Durham.

“I am surprised. On the other hand not too much of what happens over there comes as too much of a surprise.”

“I thought it was an excellent initial use of some funds.”

Environmental groups support Cooper’s veto. Dana Sargent is with Clean Cape Fear.

“Clean Cape Fear agrees with that. The bill is a dangerous environmental bill overall. It repeals the very successful plastic bag ban, it takes away from safety measures for river riparian buffers, the GenX funding was tacked onto this bill which had been sitting around for quite some time. If the legislature was serious about the GenX issue they would have created a separate bill. 

“They would have asked for that funding, they would have, in our opinion, included funding for DEQ and DHHS.”

Yarborough says he will look to override the veto, when the General Assembly gets back to work on October 4.

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