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E-M:/ Date: Wed, 24 May 2000 23:35:14 -0400



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Enviro-Mich message from "Jam Rag" <jamrag@glis.net>
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Friends

The problem with a voice vote is that you don't know for sure whether your
senator is telling the truth when they say how they voted. This is one of
those many undemocratic flaws in our otherwise relatively democratic system
of government. Another example is the whole committee process, which is oft
used to thwart democracy. The voice vote is a way for legislators to do the
wrong thing without being held accountable -- at least that's been our
experience with our own struggles. Why not have a formal record of ALL
votes?! Frankly, I find anything short of that to be scandalously short of
what citizens deserve of their leaders.

DeBeaussaert and Peters are great.

TN

Just 55 days left to get the Green Party on the ballot! Please help TODAY!!!

Sue & Tom Ness
Jam Rag Press/Michigan Music Campaign
Green Party of Metro Detroit

Ness For Senate 2000!
Don't Let Your Dreams Get Dusty!

http://www.ness4senate.com
Box 20076, Ferndale MI 48220
248-542-8090 * jamrag@glis.net
----- Original Message -----
From: Alex J. Sagady & Associates <ajs@sagady.com>
To: <enviro-mich@great-lakes.net>
Sent: Tuesday, May 23, 2000 4:56 PM
Subject: E-M:/ Timber Mandate on Senate Floor


> -------------------------------------------------------------------------
> Enviro-Mich message from "Alex J. Sagady & Associates" <ajs@sagady.com>
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------
>
> Forwarded bounced message...
>
> Date: Tue, 23 May 2000 16:11:39 -0700
> To: <enviro-mich@great-lakes.net>
> Subject: Timber Mandate lives on on Senate floor
> MIME-Version: 1.0
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=US-ASCII
> Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit
> Content-Description: "cc:Mail Note Part"
>
>   Amendment to Remove Mandate Dies on Voice Vote --
>
>   ASK YOUR SENATOR HOW HE/SHE VOTED, and let us know!!
>
>   By a Voice Vote, the 38 members of the Michigan Senate blocked an
>   amendment offered by Senator Gary Peters and supported by Senator Ken
>   DeBeaussaert to remove the DNR Budget language mandating an
unsustainable
>   level of timber harvest off Michigan's State Forests.  The vote, taken
on
>   General Orders, is the second to last stop in the Senate before final
>   passage (third reading), however it is unclear whether any additional
>   opportunities for a vote will be offered on third reading.  A second
>   amendment, offered by Senator Alma Wheeler Smith, modified the language
>   slightly (switched location of sentences) to clarify that impact on
>   wildlife habitat and recreation need to be considered by the DNR.  That
>   amendment passed.
>
>   Senator Peters presented his amendment to entirely strike the
boilerplate
>   language on the timber mandate.  He argued that the Senate has
previously
>   said that the DNR should be using the best science in managing resources
and
>   that this timber mandate works against best science.
>
>   Senator George McManus called for turning the amendment down,
effectively
>   saying this shouldn't even be discussed.  He claimed, as his letters
have
>   previously stated, that the source of the acreage figures was the DNR,
and
>   claimed this mandate was "reasonable" and would give the DNR some
>   flexibility.  He said there should be a balance between the sale of
timber
>   off state lands and private lands and that this mandate was reasonable
and
>   necessary to do.
>
>   Senator Don Koivisto noted that the issue has been discussed for a
number
>   of years, and suggested it was discussed and resolved in the House.  He
>   said the mandate sets "targets" for the DNR, simply putting the timber
up
>   for bids not requiring it be cut.  Then he asserted that the National
>   Forests are not selling wood, or are moving toward no logging, and began
>   to talk about the fire in Los Alamos, NM.  He said money from timber
sales
>   goes to fire prevention statewide, and if they can't sell timber, they
>   might have problems paying for fire fighting.  Koivisto claims that the
>   only ones who opposed the mandate are the environmental groups who
oppose
>   harvest of timber on National Forest lands, and in effect he said it is
>   because of them the fires in Los Alamos occurred. He also said that for
>   each tree cut, three more are planted, and said this is a good policy.
>
>   Senator DeBeaussaert rose to counter the arguments presented by McManus
>   and Koivisto.  He noted that in committee they had received a large
amount
>   of testimony opposing the mandate, including from foresters.  He said
that
>   each year the boilerplate language gets more specific, and as was
pointed
>   out in committee by one person who testified there is just as much
chance
>   that a future legislature can move the mandated cut to zero.  He
suggested
>   the legislature should not be in the business of micromanaging the DNR,
>   and strongly urged that this issue be finally resolved within the next
>   year.
>
>   By voice vote, the "no"s edged out the "yea"s, however there were
clearly
>   a substantial number of yeas.  Because a voice vote does not tell how an
>   individual legislator voted, those who have contacted your Senator
asking
>   him/her to oppose this mandate are well within reason calling to ask how
>   he or she voted. Because the tally of a voice vote is a judgment call,
it
>   would be interesting to compile the full list of how the Senators voted
>   (some were excused so would not have voted at all) to see what it
actually
>   was.  Chances are, because the vote wasn't recorded, if you speak to an
>   aid in the Senator's office you will be told they don't know, but if the
>   aid puts a simple question to the Senator with a call back to you, that
>   will allow you to find out!  Perhaps we can get a running tally here on
>   Enviro-Mich and find out who voted how!
>
>   Third reading on this bill could happen any time this week, possibly as
>   soon as tomorrow.
>
>   Anne Woiwode
>   Sierra Club
>
>
>
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> and Conservation Issues and Michigan-based Citizen Action.   Archives at
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>



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Alex J. Sagady & Associates        Email:  ajs@sagady.com


Environmental Enforcement, Permits/Technical Review, Public Policy and
Communications on Air, Water and Waste Issues
and Community Environmental Protection


PO Box 39  East Lansing, MI  48826-0039
(517) 332-6971 (voice); (517) 332-8987 (fax)
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