NC GOP deregulation

Fox in the Hen House, Again.

The "REINS Act" is exactly what it sounds like. A measure that would rein in government by requiring the 'major' rules created by government agencies to be approved by the General Assembly. That's right. ‘Major’ rules would have to go through NCGA, presumably as a piece of legislation. They would go through committees and be passed by both houses, possibly even be signed by the governor. This is what the Locke Foundation proposed last week at an NCGA committee meeting.

Profiles in idiocy: The removal of air quality monitors

Because knowledge and early warning systems might erode someone's profit margins:

SECTION 4.25.(a) The Department of Environment and Natural Resources shall review its ambient air monitoring network and, in the next annual monitoring network plan submitted to the United States Environmental Protection Agency, shall request the removal of any ambient air monitors not required by applicable federal laws and regulations.
SECTION 4.25.(b) No later than September 1, 2016, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources shall discontinue all ambient air monitors not required by applicable federal laws and regulations if approval from the United States Environmental Protection Agency is not required for the discontinuance.
SECTION 4.25.(c) Nothing in this section is intended to prevent the Department from installing temporary ambient air monitors as part of an investigation of a suspected violation of air quality rules, standards, or limitations or in response to an emergency situation causing an imminent danger to human health and safety.

Of course, it never crosses their mind that keeping (a) & (b) in place would very possibly prevent (c) from ever happening. The GOP is likely working from the hypothesis, "If the air gets bad enough, we'll know because birds will start falling from the sky and people will be getting nosebleeds." Idiots.

Damn the environment! Full speed ahead!

Rep. John Torbett sees no reason to continue to consider the environmental impacts of major public projects.

With little discussion and no study of the potential consequences, state legislators are looking to gut an environmental protection law that has been on the books since 1971.

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