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GLIN==> Will the Ohio Senate stand up for the Great Lakes Compact?



Akron Beacon Journal: http://www.ohio.com/editorial/opinions/12239036.html

Strength in numbers

Will the Ohio Senate stand up for the Great Lakes Compact?

State Rep. Matthew Dolan rightly wants his legislative colleagues to make another run at approving the Great Lakes Compact. The Novelty Republican recalls the Ohio House approving the compact last year by an overwhelming vote of 82-5. He knows the compact is the product of prolonged negotiations among the Great Lakes states, guided by a 39-member advisory committee, aided by the input of thousands of citizens.

Already four of the states have approved implementing legislation. Why not Ohio?

Not long after Dolan floated the idea of trying again, a roar emanated from the Senate. Timothy Grendell dismissed the compact, explaining that he was ''deeply disturbed'' and ''sad'' about Dolan failing to understand the stakes. The Chesterland Republican pledged to introduce a ''corrected version.'' He reprised the role he played in the last session of the legislature when the compact stalled in the Senate.

The obvious question is: When will a Republican senator (or senators) stand up to Grendell and champion this worthy cause?

After all, Grendell stands virtually alone. He warns about ''the fate of the waters'' falling into ''the hands of liberal states like Michigan, Wisconsin and Minnesota.'' Actually, Minnesota has a Republican governor. Republicans control one chamber of the legislature in Wisconsin and in Michigan. Is Jon Husted, the speaker of the Ohio House, a liberal? Hardly. Yet he presided over approval of the compact. The thinking is, he readily would do so again.

Grendell talks about the compact threatening property rights. Dolan (to repeat, a Republican) explains that isn't the case. The compact enhances the position of Ohioans. It holds that no Great Lakes state can pursue its own course regarding such critical matters as water diversions. In that way, Ohio is less vulnerable to the whims of a Wisconsin or Michigan.

The states recognized their shared interest. They took to heart the word of the feds: Get your act together, or Washington will run the lakes. The next step is implementing what has been fully vetted. In Ohio, Timothy Grendell's Senate colleagues must stand up and say: Sorry, you've got it wrong.

State Rep. Matthew Dolan rightly wants his legislative colleagues to make another run at approving the Great Lakes Compact. The Novelty Republican recalls the Ohio House approving the compact last year by an overwhelming vote of 82-5. He knows the compact is the product of prolonged negotiations among the Great Lakes states, guided by a 39-member advisory committee, aided by the input of thousands of citizens.

Already four of the states have approved implementing legislation. Why not Ohio?

Not long after Dolan floated the idea of trying again, a roar emanated from the Senate. Timothy Grendell dismissed the compact, explaining that he was ''deeply disturbed'' and ''sad'' about Dolan failing to understand the stakes. The Chesterland Republican pledged to introduce a ''corrected version.'' He reprised the role he played in the last session of the legislature when the compact stalled in the Senate.

The obvious question is: When will a Republican senator (or senators) stand up to Grendell and champion this worthy cause?

After all, Grendell stands virtually alone. He warns about ''the fate of the waters'' falling into ''the hands of liberal states like Michigan, Wisconsin and Minnesota.'' Actually, Minnesota has a Republican governor. Republicans control one chamber of the legislature in Wisconsin and in Michigan. Is Jon Husted, the speaker of the Ohio House, a liberal? Hardly. Yet he presided over approval of the compact. The thinking is, he readily would do so again.

Grendell talks about the compact threatening property rights. Dolan (to repeat, a Republican) explains that isn't the case. The compact enhances the position of Ohioans. It holds that no Great Lakes state can pursue its own course regarding such critical matters as water diversions. In that way, Ohio is less vulnerable to the whims of a Wisconsin or Michigan.

The states recognized their shared interest. They took to heart the word of the feds: Get your act together, or Washington will run the lakes. The next step is implementing what has been fully vetted. In Ohio, Timothy Grendell's Senate colleagues must stand up and say: Sorry, you've got it wrong.


-- 
Kristy Meyer
Director of Clean Water Programs
The Ohio Environmental Council
1207 Grandview Ave., Ste. 201
Columbus, OH 43212
P. 614.487.7506
F. 614.487.7510
E. kristy@theoec.org
W. www.theoec.org

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