I was one of more than 800 folks who turned out Wednesday night for the Navy's hearing in Hertford, NC, on the proposed OLF. Even though I arrived at 5:15 for a hearing starting at 7, due to heavy turnout by local residents I did not get to speak until after 10 p.m. I'm not complaining--the Perquimans County residents who spoke before me did an excellent job of explaining why the proposed alternative location (Site A) in their county would have unacceptable human impacts. I and other speakers from other counties chipped in with discussion of why the Navy's "preferred" alternative--Site C adjacent to the Pocosin Lakes National Wildlife Refuge--is equally unacceptable. I and many other speakers emphasized that our opposition is not insensitive to legitimate national defense or training needs of our armed services. In fact, one of the major reasons why Site C and several others are so bad is the unnecessary vulnerability of Navy pilots to dangerous large bird collisions at those locations.
Of the 50-100 speakers, not one spoke in favor of the proposed site alternatives in northeastern North Carolina. That kind of unanimity in a large hearing is unique in my experience.
I didn't make it back to Winston-Salem until about 3:30 a.m. Thursday morning, but it was worth the trip. Many thanks to my campaign volunteer, Bill, who drove down and back.