Former Commissioner says TCEQ Needs More Talk and Less Court

A former Texas Commission on Environmental Quality Commissioner says his old agency needs to talk to the Environmental Protection Agency instead of taking it to court.  Former TCEQ Commissioner Larry Soward says the dispute over the Texas flexible air permitting program not working can be easily fixed if the TCEQ will just listen to the EPA’s concerns and go from there.  “Get on with the business of getting the program compliant with the Federal Clean Air Act and get those permits that have been issued that are not compliant, get those adjusted to make them compliant.”  Soward says changing the air permitting program to make it compliant won’t cost the state jobs.  “These same companies are operating in other states with fully compliant air programs, they’re not losing jobs, the companies aren’t moving away or shutting down, and the same will be true with Texas.”

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One Comment

  1. Tim Ruggiero says:

    Great idea, too bad it’ll never happen. If Texas has not ever been compliant with the Federal Standards, which I don’t think we have- then there’s a simple reason for it- Gov. Perry doesn’t want it to. He’ll argue that compliance will costs thousands of jobs, increase taxes, increase the cost of services and good, reduce the tax base and the world as we know it may very well end. If we can add restrictions to vehicles to make them more compliant, then we can do so with Industry as well. It’s just not that hard. No jobs will lost-if anything, jobs will be created. But Mr. Perry is too well tied to Industry to not fully support them-and expect that the millions in political contributions will continue to flow.

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