Monday, May 12, 2008

Garrett and Ringwood

Who says Representative Scott Garrett doesn't pay attention to the District? Well, at least his press office does.

After I pointed out that it was Representative Frank Pallone, and not Garrett, who started the effort to get the Ringwood Superfund site relisted; followed by Dennis Shulman saying the plight of the Ramapoughs reinforced his desire to run; Garrett put out the following today as part of his Garrett Gazette:

As you may know, I have been actively involved with efforts to re-list the Ringwood, New Jersey site on the National Priorities List (NPL),also known as the National Superfund list. The site had been de-listed initially by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in 1994, but in 2006 it became the first EPA Superfund site to be re-listed.

Since entering office, I have been actively involved in working to resolve this situation.
That's not entirely true.

Garrett was first elected in 2002. According to the Bergen Record, Garrett's first demand of a report of the status of the clean-up came only after their award winning series "Toxic Legacy" debuted. The series broke in late 2005, so Garrett was in office almost 3 years before making serious comment on the situation.

Garrett also was not part of the letter to the EPA Inspector General from Pallone, as well as Senators Bob Menendez and Frank Lautenberg, demanding an investigation into why the site was de-listed in the first place. Whether or not Garrett was invited to participate, and therefore, whether or not he declined to call for the investigation is not clear.

To his credit, the New York Times says Garrett did urge the EPA to relist the site, which I don't think anyone questions. It's more of how committed he was to it before being shown up by other members in the Congressional Delegation.

"Since entering office" is quite a stretch.

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