Senate’s aim at coal ash a good first step

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The N.C. Senate has taken a welcome step toward putting the responsibility and financial burden for coal ash cleanup on the energy company that created the dumps.

Proposed legislation would require Duke Energy to dry out and close waste dumps within 15 years at the company’s 14 power plant sites. The legislation also would add reinforcements to the N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources – 25 new positions, all financed by utility companies with coal ash ponds. Other regulatory positions would answer to an independent commission proposed by the bill. The commission would review closure plans for coal waste dumps.

The Senate’s legislation is welcome news to those of us who think the cleanup burden should rest on the utility companies and not on the backs of utilities customers.

An editorial about the State Bureau of Investigation in Wednesday’s edition of the Rocky Mount Telegram alluded to an SBI investigation into several key members of the N.C. General Assembly and Gov. Pat McCrory.

The SBI has confirmed it is investigating contributions made by donors in the video sweepstakes industry to the campaigns of N.C. Sen. Phil Berger, N.C. Rep. Thom Tillis and McCrory – not the officials themselves.