Update from the Legislative Committee
By Karen Dike
Legislative Committee Chair
I have always loved politics and now am combining that love with volunteering for the Sierra Club. I recently decided to accept the Chapter’s offer to chair the Legislative Committee. I hope to successfully fill Mary Edward’s large shoes!
Here are two priorities you can expect our committee to focus on this year:
- We will work with the RMC Beyond Oil and Gas Team to increase regulatory protections and enforcement to reduce oil and gas impacts on our state’s health and environment.
- We will attempt to revise a current statute to make it easier for local municipalities to ban specific non-recyclable items, such as Styrofoam take-out containers.
We will work with our RMC lobbyist and other green organizations to steer these issues forward. It will be a tough year to get legislation introduced due to the upcoming elections and the recalls from last year.
Additionally, the committee sets priorities for other potential bills, and we will ask the lobbyist to watch these for us. At the end of the session, a legislative score card is completed in conjunction with other green organizations, which assists us in looking at how all the legislators performed on environmental issues over the year.
Lastly––and this is where YOU come in––please keep informed on issues important to you, your community, and your favorite outdoor spaces. We will let you know the progress of important environmental bills. And we encourage you to use your voice to your let your legislators know where you stand on issues. Staying in touch with our elected officials is now more important than ever, given tremendous influence of big industry and others who too often place money ahead of the environment. It is vital that we all become informed citizens and watchdogs of the political system to ensure the government continues to be “of the people and for the people.”
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