Public Comments for 02/17/2021 Agriculture Chesapeake and Natural Resources - Natural Resources Subcommittee
SB1274 - Wildlife corridors; various agencies to consider and incorporate.
Last Name: Alderson Locality: Castlewood

I am writing about bill SB1390. I support this program and feel that we in rural areas need it. I have personally trapped cats in my neighborhood and neutered and spayed them. This is the only way to cut down the cat population. I live in Russell County and we don't even have a shelter for cats. I would love to see a law in Virginia requiring cats to be spayed and neutered. We are the voices of those who can't speak. Thank you.

Last Name: Neale Locality: Rockbridge County

Corridors help wildlife and humans avoid collisions. Please support.

Last Name: Engle Locality: Swoope

I strongly support this legislation. It will protect both wildlife and humans.

Last Name: Russell Locality: Virginia Beach

The pipeline for oil needs to be reopened but thanks to our corrupt president biden it got closed which put a lot of people out of work and raised gas prices.

Last Name: Olech Locality: Williamsburg

Please support SB 1274 to protect our fragile wildlife habitats from senseless destruction. We have ENOUGH empty buildings and empty store fronts that could be refurbished to meet needs rather than continue to annihilate our greenspace that wildlife requires, to exist.

Last Name: rosapepe Organization: Citizen Locality: Chesterfield

Please support SB 1274 which requires state agencies to take into consideration wildlife corridors . I have lived in Colorado and watched wildlife populations improve as state agencies, e.g., Department of Transportation, incorporated how their actions could affect wildlife corridors and how they could mitigate them or make improvements for wildlife populations connectivity. An example of this was building wildlife corridor overpasses over state highways which blocked migration and movement of wild species. Thank you for your time and consideration. John Rosapepe

Last Name: DiChiara Locality: Lovingston

Greetings, I urge you in the strongest possible sense to support SB 1274. Wildlife corridors are important because habitat fragmentation is the single greatest threat to species and this impacts Virginia citizens. Fragmentation by roads and a large deer population, make Virginia among the top ten states for deer/vehicle collisions every year, costing over $533 million annually. As wildlife move across land or through the water, they increasingly find their habitat shrinking or fragmented by human development. SB 1274 seeks to combat the decline of Virginia’s natural ecosystems by helping wildlife move safely from one place to another. This bill will both protect wildlife and the public of Virginia. If the bill passes, it will help ensure that wildlife corridors are considered and protected across Virginia and across agency jurisdictions. This will allow agencies to best integrate wildlife connectivity, and the corresponding public safety considerations, into their existing operations. Thank you.

Last Name: Fandetti Organization: RF Locality: SCHUYLER

This bill is important for the welfare of humans, wildlife and, ultimately, the ecosystems which we share. I fully support this bill.

Last Name: Peckman Locality: Roanoke

This bill is important to preserve wildlife, and to prevent crashes. Please support this bill.

Last Name: Nielsen Organization: private citizen, Virginia Wilderness Committee Locality: Bridgewater

Please give some attention to SB 1274 as it passes through your committee. Virginia has a large deer population and we lose many to collisions every year to the tune of over $500million in damages. SB 1274 seeks to combat the decline of Virginia’s natural ecosystems by helping wildlife move safely from one place to another. This bill will both protect wildlife and the public. To do this, SB 1274 builds on the Virginia Wildlife Corridor Action Plan (WCAP), which will compile and condense the best available science on the status of habitat connectivity in Virginia. The WCAP will assess the connections between core habitat areas, list potential projects to improve such connections, and provide an action plan for the completion of those projects. SB 1274 directs DCR, VDOT, and the State Forester to integrate wildlife corridors identified in the WCAP into their own strategic planning guidance documents. Sounds like win/win to me. Thanks, Anne Nielsen, biologist, retired.

Last Name: Lapis Locality: Washington County, Bristol

Clean water matters.

Last Name: Carroll Locality: Alexandria

I do support SB 1390 This bill is good for the cats and people of Virginia It affirms that Trap-Neuter-Return for cats is legal I do support SB 1274 I support the creation and enforcement of wildlife corridors for the safety of both animals, motorists and the preservation of Virginia's wildlife

Last Name: Gillenwater Organization: The Piedmont Environmental Council Locality: Charlottesville

The Piedmont Environmental Council supports SB 1274. As wildlife increasingly find their habitat shrinking or fragmented by human development, such as roadways, the protection of wildlife corridors is of critical importance to both animals and the general public. SB 1274 builds on the efforts of the Wildlife Corridor Action Plan (WCAP) passed by the General Assembly in 2020 by directing that the wildlife corridors identified in the WCAP are integrated into the strategic planning documents of agencies with activities that could impact wildlife movement and public safety. This will help ensure that wildlife corridors are considered and protected across Virginia and across agency jurisdictions, as well as allow agencies to best integrate wildlife connectivity, and the corresponding public safety considerations, into their existing operations. 

Last Name: Hatcher Locality: Boones Mill

These bills are very much important and I urge considerations.

Last Name: Hunsinger Organization: Friends of the Rappahannock Locality: Fredericksburg

Friends of the Rappahannock supports SB1274. This legislation directs various agencies to consider and incorporate, where applicable, wildlife corridors and any recommendation of the Wildlife Corridor Action Plan. This legislation will help require agencies to consider the connection of important habitat for brook trout and other aquatic species when planning stream crossing projects and culvert replacements. Thank you for your consideration of this bill and we hope you will support it.

Last Name: Williams Locality: Northumberland

Please pass this bill. It is the humane way to address the feral cat population.

Last Name: Sommer Locality: Madison

I am in support of this bill; I've seen wildlife bridges in Colorado and thought it was a great idea, one that if gov't agencies and insurance companies worked together to build them, not only would animals be saved, but so many car accidents would be prevented.

Last Name: Foster Organization: Trap Neuter and Return Locality: Martinsville

I support ability of cats to remaim in place with Trap Neuter and Release. Please pass this bill

Last Name: Grebe Organization: Audubon Naturalist Society Locality: Fairfax County

The Audubon Naturalist Society supports SB 1274. It's the best of both worlds: win for people (as it will increase the safety of driving in aiming to minimize and avoid wildlife collisions) and it's a win for wildlife who get a boost in being able to live through another day. Building on the efforts of the 2020 Wildlife Corridor Action Plan (WCAP), this bill aims to make Virginia safer for both wildlife and residents by ensuring that wildlife corridors identified in the WCAP are integrated into the strategic planning documents of other agencies with activities that could impact wildlife movement and public safety. Fragmentation is the single greatest threat to species and identifying and preserving wildlife corridors and help reverse the fragmentation trend. Fragmentation of habitats also impacts residents too: VA is among the top ten states for deer/vehicle collisions every year, costing over $533 million annually - when we put roads through corridors, people and wildlife pay with money and lives. This bill will help prioritize preserving and planning around wildlife corridors. Virginia showed leadership by joining a growing, bipartisan movement to protect wildlife corridors with the passage of the WCAP and SB 1274 helps ensure the best and most coordinated outcome of that plan. Thank you, Renee Grebe, Northern Virginia Conservation Advocate, Audubon Naturalist Society

Last Name: Miller Organization: Virginia Wilderness Committee Locality: Lexington

The Virginia Wilderness Committee fully supports this bill both for the safety for people driving and for the wildlife that usually gets the short end of the stick during a collision.

Last Name: Boos Organization: Wild Virginia Locality: Charlottesville

SB 1274 will make Virginia safer for both wildlife and citizens. lt builds on the Wildlife Corridor Action Plan (WCAP) passed by the General Assembly in 2020 by ensuring that wildlife corridors identified in the Wildlife Corridor Action Plan are integrated into the strategic planning documents of other agencies. Protecting wildlife corridors is important because habitat fragmentation is the single greatest threat to species, and this impacts Virginia citizens as well. Fragmentation by roads and a large deer population, make Virginia among the top ten states for deer/vehicle collisions every year, costing over $533 million annually. By prioritizing wildlife movement corridors and planning for them, we can help wildlife move safely through the landscape and reduce these collisions, saving both money and lives. Thank you for your support of SB 1274.

SB1290 - ConserveVirginia program; established.
Last Name: Russell Locality: Virginia Beach

The pipeline for oil needs to be reopened but thanks to our corrupt president biden it got closed which put a lot of people out of work and raised gas prices.

Last Name: Lapis Locality: Washington County, Bristol

Clean water matters.

SB1319 - Waste Diversion & Recycling Task Force; Department of Environmental Quality to continue Task Force.
Last Name: Halligan Organization: AMMD Pine Grove Project Locality: Powhatan

Please support SB 1319 Waste Diversion and Recycling Task Force; Department of Environmental Quality to Continue Task Force (Hashmi). Virginia's Solid Waste Management system is broken. Our rural counties continue to be targeted and pressured to host large corporate multi-state landfills under the promise of economic salvation. These huge heavily industrialized facilities disrupt communities, displace residents, destroy landscapes and wildlife habitats and erase cultural and historical resources all in the name of free enterprise and corporate profit.. Virginia does not need additional disposal capacity. DEQ's 2020 Annual Solid Waste Management report reveals sufficient disposal capacity for at least the next 20 years. Virtually all of Virginia's 71 Solid Waste Planning Units report sufficient disposal capacity for the next 20 years with some indicating the existence of additional reserve capacity beyond the 20 year window. Landfilling is an outdated technology and needs to be replaced by more economically efficient, socially responsible, and environmentally sustainable solid waste management policies, practices, and methods. Thank you very much for taking the time to consider this important issue. Sincerely Kevin Halligan Powhatan, Virginia

Last Name: Lapis Locality: Washington County, Bristol

Clean water matters.

Last Name: Stoltzfus Organization: James Madison University Locality: Harrisonburg

SB1319 is an important step towards bringing Virginia's waste management into the 21st Century. The variety of technologies and approaches available to divert materials from landfills has proven to create more jobs, improve environmental outcomes, and save money for municipalities than continuing the status quo. Virginia's Universities are capable of assisting this task force in identifying best practice technologies, regulations, and business models to achieve better environmental, economic, and social justice outcomes for managing our waste, and I urge you to support this bill. Thank you.

Last Name: Myers Organization: CCLA Locality: Cumberland, Cartersville

SB1319 – Waste control and recycling; permits. I speak before you today representing Cumberland County Landfill Alert (CCLA). We have read and fully support SB1319 and encourage you to vote yes on this important legislation. The Waste Diversion and Recycling Task Force was created pursuant to SJ 42 in 2020 and this bill amends that resolution. The Task Force needs time to organize, research, hold meetings, and make recommendations in this vital area. The current methods of handling trash are not working and are harmful to our environment and changes are needed. The Waste Diversion and Recycling Task Force does not have an easy task before them, and it will take time to research and review various options to handle Virginia’s trash to find better methods that are not so harmful to our environment – it is doable! It is important for you, our lawmakers, to make sure adequate time is provided for this Task Force. It is time for you to stop fixing things with band aids when a major bandage is needed. Approve SB1319 and give the Task Force the needed time and resources to do a complete, thorough research and make recommendations to improve things for all Virginians. Does Virginia want to continue to be known as the State for Lovers or the Trash State? The decision is in your hands, we do not need more Charles Cities or other similar tragedies already present in Virginia. It is time for you to protect our environment! Thank You.

Last Name: Halligan Organization: Cumberland County Landfill Awareness Locality: POWHATAN

SB 1319 Waste Diversion and Recycling Task Force: Department of Environmental Quality to Continue (Hashmi) Madam Chairwoman and members of the Committee, my name is Kevin Halligan. I live in Powhatan County Virginia and am a member of the AMMD Pine Grove Project. I am here to speak in support of Senate Bill 1319. SB1319 directs the Waste Diversion and Recycling Task Force to study ways that organic material such as wasted food generated in and outside of Virginia can be diverted from Virginia landfills and either be composted or recovered and donated. Virginia's broken waste management system must be fixed, and it is time that more responsible, efficient, and environmentally sustainable policies and methods of waste management be established. The immediate formation of the Waste Diversion and Recycling Task Force is the first step in bringing needed changes to Virginia's ability to manage solid waste generated within and imported from outside of the Commonwealth. DEQ’s 2020 Annual Solid Waste Report estimates that Virginia Landfills have sufficient disposal capacity for the next 20 years. It should be noted that DEQ only requires that Virginia’s Solid Waste Planning Units project disposal needs for only the next 20 years. Virginia’s 71 Regional Solid Waste Planning Units are responsible for managing the waste generated in the counties and cities of Virginia. These Planning Units are each required to maintain current Solid Waste Management Plans projecting anticipated needs and disposal capacity for 20 years from the date of the plan. These plans must be updated every 5 years. Virtually every Solid Waste Management Unit that I have contacted and Plan that I have reviewed indicates sufficient disposal capacity to effectively manage the region’s waste stream for the Plan’s 20-year window. The plans from Virginia’s most populated Regional Planning Units, Fairfax County, Hampton Roads Planning District Commission, and Central Virginia Waste Management Authority all indicate sufficient disposal capacity for at least 20 years or more. Virginia does not appear to have any pressing need for additional landfill capacity but instead needs to develop more socially responsible and environmentally sustainable waste management methods. Please vote yes to Senate Bill 1319. Thank you for the opportunity speak today. Kevin Halligan 6372 Haleford Drive Powhatan County Va. 23139 Kevin Halligan wkhalligan@gmail.com

Last Name: Halligan Organization: AMMD Pine Grove Project Locality: Powhatan

SB 1319 Waste Diversion and Recycling Task Force: Department of Environmental Quality to Continue (Hashmi) Madam Chairwoman and members of the Committee, my name is Kevin Halligan. I live in Powhatan County Virginia and am a member of the AMMD Pine Grove Project. I am here to speak in support of Senate Bill 1319. SB1319 directs the Waste Diversion and Recycling Task Force to study ways that organic material such as wasted food generated in and outside of Virginia can be diverted from Virginia landfills and either be composted or recovered and donated. DEQ’s 2020 Annual Solid Waste Report estimates that Virginia Landfills have sufficient disposal capacity for the next 20 years. It should be noted that DEQ only requires that Virginia’s Solid Waste Planning Units project disposal needs for no longer than 20 years. Virginia’s 71 Regional Solid Waste Planning Units are responsible for managing the waste generated in the counties and cities of Virginia. These Planning Units are each required to maintain current Solid Waste Management Plans projecting anticipated needs and disposal capacity for 20 years from the date of the plan. These plans must be updated every 5 years. Virtually every Solid Waste Management Unit that I have contacted and Plan that I have reviewed indicates sufficient disposal capacity to effectively manage the region’s waste stream for the Plan’s 20-year window. The plans from Virginia’s most populated Regional Planning Units, Fairfax County, Hampton Roads Planning District Commission, and Central Virginia Waste Management Authority all indicate sufficient disposal capacity for at least 20 years or more. Virginia does not appear to have any pressing need for additional landfill capacity but instead needs to develop more socially responsible and environmentally sustainable waste management methods. Suspending Permits for new or existing landfills that accept huge volumes of waste will have no adverse impact on Virginia’s waste management needs but will instead prevent the unnecessary disruption of communities, dislocation of residents destruction of cultural and historic resources, wildlife habitats and landscapes. The permitting of huge heavily industrialized, multi-state corporate landfills should be suspended until such time as the General Assembly has had an opportunity to enact legislation that incorporates the findings and recommendations of the Waste Diversion and Recycling Task Force. Please vote yes to Senate Bill 1319. Thank you for the opportunity speak today. Kevin Halligan 6372 Haleford Drive Powhatan County Va. 23139 Kevin Halligan wkhalligan@gmail.com

Last Name: Halligan Organization: AMMD Pine Grove Project Locality: POWHATAN

Mr. Chairman and members of the Committee, Please vote yes to SB 1319 Waste Control and Recycling:Permits. This bill directs the DEQ Waste Diversion and Recycling Task Force to study ways prohibit the disposal of wasted food, food residuals and other organic materials in Virginia's landfills. It also directs the task force study the development of a food donation and composting infrastructure to accept all food residuals and organic material. Organic waste accounts for 20-30% of waste disposed in landfills. Waste Diversion prpgrams will extend the life of existing landfills reduce the need to develop new landfills. Virginia must adopt more socially responsible and environmentally sustainable methods to manage the waste generated in and brought from outside of Virginia. As stated in its November 1, 2019 Report to the General Assembly, the Department of Environmental Quality concluded that "new paradigms need to be created to manage waste in Virginia and divert waste from landfills." Thank you for your consideration of SB 1319. Sincerely Kevin Halligan Powhatan County Va AMMD Pine Grove Project Member

SB1396 - Onsite Sewage Indemnification Fund; use of Fund for grants to certain property owners.
Last Name: Calvert Organization: Virginia Conservation Network Locality: Charlottesville

Virginia Conservation Network (VCN) and its coalition of 150 conservation organizations across the Commonwealth are in full support of SB1396. Please vote in SUPPORT of this legislation. Case for support: http://www.vcnva.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/01/SB1396-Onsite-Sewage-Fund.pdf

Last Name: Killius Organization: James River Association Locality: Richmond

The James River Association strongly support SB1396, along with our colleagues at Wetlands Watch and Friends of the Rappahannock. Adequate wastewater treatment is an environmental and an equity issue. Aging septic systems across the Commonwealth, including those designed to meet out-of-date health and environmental regulations, can send pathogens and nutrient pollution into our communities and our waterways. This is a particular concern within our rural coastal regions, where climate change and recurrent flooding are already inundating these systems and significantly reducing their lifespan. SB1396 will help address these concerns as we work to ensure our wastewater infrastructure adequately protects the health and well-being of all Virginians.

Last Name: Russell Locality: Virginia Beach

The pipeline for oil needs to be reopened but thanks to our corrupt president biden it got closed which put a lot of people out of work and raised gas prices.

End of Comments