Letter: Speak up for Democrats’ green efforts

Put Thurs., May 9, 4pm on your calendars—to speak up on Committee Day for our Democratic resolutions inspired by Earth Day this year. The event will be held on the sixth floor of our County Office Building at 22 Market St. in Poughkeepsie.

We’re calling on Dutchess County to join Ulster, Greene, Sullivan, and 28 other counties in the NYSAC-endorsed Municipal Electricity and Gas Alliance—to save $400,000 annually for local taxpayers—and follow the cost-saving, green-jobs example of Madison County. A SolarizeDutchess.com initiative would mean county-coordinated, bulk-purchase, 25 percent volume discounts on solar for farmers, businesses, homeowners, municipalities, and institutions here in our county, like Madison County did. Let’s make this reality.

Moreover, because our county’s Solid Waste Management Plan calls for trash from other counties to be burned with an “upgraded turbine” at our county incinerator and leaves the door open for an ash landfill here in Dutchess, our County Legislature’s Democratic caucus recently voted against the proposed plan.

However, because of our push to increase recycling, the solid wast plan does set a goal/projection of 90,000 more tons of materials to be recycled or composted annually in Dutchess by 2021.

Meanwhile, our County Legislature’s GOP majority just decided, incredibly, to sell off our county’s only recycling infrastructure—the Materials Recovery Facility on Fulton Street—for a mere $600,000, which is less than a fourth of what it had recently been assessed at.

At the very least, the proceeds of that sale should be used to fund needed recycling and composting infrastructure in Dutchess schools, municipalities, and the private sector .

Email all 25 of us at countylegislators@dutchessny.gov for action on these before 2525; call in Fridays 5-6 pm to our WVKR 91.3 FM show and Saturdays 8-11 am to our WHVW 950 AM show. Visit DutchessDemocracy.blogspot.com for more; call us at 453-2105 to get involved.

Joel Tyner
County Legislator

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