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December 28, 2014
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DRBC faces serious funding shortfall


Collier pointed out that the lower basin might see up to a meter sea level rise over the century, which could allow the salt line to rise. “If that’s so, do we need more water at Trenton to keep that down and if we do, where is that water going to come from?” asked Collier. “We’re working with the Army Corps of Engineers to connect our water flow model to their salinity models so we can do some scenario tests.”

Regarding DRBC’s proposed regulations for natural gas development, Collier reported that although DRBC commissioners have been participating in bi-weekly phone calls, the chair of the Army Corps of Engineers is calling for a face-to-face meeting.

DRBC is also responding to a National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) lawsuit from New York State, which could have significant repercussions according to Collier. “The Attorney General first sued our federal member and some other federal agencies, then sued DRBC. It’s the first time that one of our states has sued DRBC, saying that we are a federal agency and therefore should be doing an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for natural gas drilling.”

The DRBC maintains it is not a federal agency because its purpose is to bring the states and federal government together on equal planes. “If we are required to do NEPA, it really affects states’ rights,” explained Collier. “When they signed up for the commission, they didn’t really think they were signing up for the federal requirements. And it would be required for everything else we do.”

The next DRBC commissioners meeting is scheduled for May 10. Visit www.state.nj.us/drbc for more information.

Disappointed but not surprised

Somehow I thought that the DRBC's role was to oversee the protection of the waters of the Delaware basin. Because the river and its tributaries flow through several states and jurisdictions, the protection has always been a challenge albeit one that has for the most part been met in spite of the multiple levels of governance that need to cooperate in order for this to happen.
The pro-drilling groups extoll how committed they are to safe-guarding the water resource. Yet it is the narrow and self-serving focus expressed in comments such as this that make this faction so much less believable.

Take a better look

When the DRBC was created, back in the Kennedy administration, there was a real need for someone to oversee the river and it's watershed. Since that time the states involved as well as the federal government have created specific agencies to protect all lands and waters, the USEPA, NJDEP, NYDEC, PADEP, DNREC . These were not in existence when the DRBC was formed so at that time it performed a very important mission. Today however it is nothing more than an overbearing bureaucracy which not only wastes taxpayer dollars, (the ones they still manage to collect)but now they have decided to take sides in a political issue where they have no business whatsoever. It is time to dissolve the DRBC and let the agencies who are charged with the protection of our environment take full control and stop making it harder and more expensive for not only businesses but also landowners to utilize their land!

Time to GO!

The DRBC has held up Natural Gas development in Wayne County, as well as other places, for too long. They have overstepped their authority and need to be put in their place. Starving them by withholding their funding is the simplest and most direct way to do that. I for one am all for seeing them become a part of history.
Goodbye Ms. Collier! :-)