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E-M:/ senator blasts governor's environmental policies

Enviro-Mich message from Dave Dempsey <davemec@voyager.net>

The following release was received by our office today after this week's
beach closings in Oakland County.


Massive Beach Closings Show Water Pollution Worsening
Due to State Neglect

State Senator Gary Peters (D-Bloomfield Township) said today that scores of
beach closings this week in Metro Detroit signal the failure of Engler
Administration water pollution policies.

Peters said the closings demonstrate the urgency of appropriating $90
million in clean water money from the 1998 environmental bond for cleanup
this fall, rather than spending half the money on studies of water quality
as the Administration proposes.

"Metro Detroit families often can't go to the beach and they can't trust
that it's safe when they do," said Peters.  "This week's round of beach
closings and contaminated waters is a clear symbol of the Administration's
failure to protect our environment."

Added Peters:  "I'll be working with fellow legislators this fall to put
environmental bond money for water cleanup where it belongs.  We don't need
more excuses or studies. We need to help communities address the problems
of polluted runoff, raw sewage overflows, and sprawl that contribute to
beach closings."

Peters pointed out that in his 1999 State of the State message, Engler said
"Michigan's air, land and water are cleaner today than at any time since
record-keeping began more than a generation ago."  But statistics prove him

According to the Detroit News, 8 beaches were closed in Oakland County in
July 1997, 24 in July 1998, and 27 this week.

And Michigan has already recorded more than 120 exceedances of the federal
smog standard this year, topping the polluted air total for all of last year.

Dave Dempsey
Policy Director
Michigan Environmental Council
119 Pere Marquette, Suite 2A
Lansing, MI 48912
517-487-9541 (fax)

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