2004 DEC Budget Alert
STOP JOB-KILLING BUDGET CUTS
KEEP DEC FULLY-STAFFED
SO THAT DEC CAN ADEQUATELY PROTECT
PUBLIC HEALTH AND THE ENVIRONMENT
Budget cuts at the Department of Environmental Conservation left all programs dangerously understaffed, resulting in the loss of oversight, accountability and revenue, as well as a serious threat to public health.
Fact: The Executive Budget had a two-year decrease of approximately 419 positions at DEC. The continued reduction in the DEC workforce makes it increasingly difficult for the State to ensure the safety and purity of our air, land, and water.
Fact: DEC initiated a process of phasing out the Environmental Monitors employed by DEC and replacing them with private contractors who will be selected by the facility or contractor that is being monitored. This privatization of DEC=s regulating responsibilities does not save the State any money because the costs associated with the Environmental Monitor are paid by an assessment levied against the entity requiring oversight.
Fact: 147 fewer Division of Solid & Hazardous Materials staff are available to inspect closed landfills, former Transfer Storage and Disposal (TSD) facilities and perform Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) inspections at hazardous waste generators.
Fact: The Division of Water=s inspection and monitoring programs is seriously compromised by staff cuts. DEC has made great progress reducing pollutant discharges for over 30 years. New mandates such as Stormwater and CAFO (Concentrated Animal Feed Operations) are designed to further reduce pollutants that damage our drinking and recreational waters.
Fact: The State has a maximum allowable harvest of up to 17,000 acres of State forest for timber sales. However, vacancies in the forestry titles have led to a downward revision of sales targets over the past five years at a cost to the State of approximately $4 million per year in annual lumber sales revenue. This lost revenue would fund fifty (50) additional positions in Lands and Forests.
Fact: Although sporting license fees increased to sustain the Conservation Fund and maintain and enhance hunting fishing and trapping opportunities in the New York, Division of Fish, Wildlife and Marine Resources experienced an 83 staff reduction since 2001.
Enhance Current DEC Staffing and Remediation Standards
Fact: The Legislature refinanced the New York State Superfund with $168 million in funding to continue the present level of New York's programs to investigate and remediate hazardous waste and substances, petroleum, dry cleaning, brownfields, and other contaminated sites across the State.
Fact: Over 37,000 spills comprising thousands of gallons of toxic material have not been investigated by DEC because of staff shortages, many in the NYC metropolitan area. These uninvestigated spills endanger our drinking water and pure water supply.
Fact: DEC is contemplating allowing spillers and polluters to self-certify that they have cleaned-up their toxic mess instead of providing adequate staff to ensure safe timely clean-up.
Fact: Identification, remediation, and certification of hazardous waste and hazardous substances sites is important for protection of environment and public health concerns and also for the economic revitalization of sites and their return to the tax rolls.
CUT STATE WASTE
NOT STATE WORKERS
KEEP OUR COMMUNITIES AND CITIZENS SAFE FROM
HAZARDOUS WASTE and
Write, Call (1-877-255-9417),
& Email (http://politicalaction.nysut.org/)
the Governor & Legislature Today
Home Page State Budget Page
Last Updated on November 29, 2016