Cleanup bill

first_imgRegulating the cleanup of the land – which saw years of toxic contamination, once was the site of a partial nuclear meltdown, and still regularly gets cited for allowing tainted runoff into water sources – belongs to federal authorities. But SB 990 gives the state some power to make sure the full cleanup will happen by preventing the sale or transfer of any of the former field lab property until it meets Superfund cleanup standards. There’s no question that the field lab site on the hills above Chatsworth and Simi Valley will be developed someday for human use. And it’s imperative that when it is, there’s no hidden poison still lurking. Cleaning up the toxics-filled site for safe use isn’t a partisan issue. It’s an issue of doing the right thing – finally – or of continuing to do the wrong thing at the former field lab. ARNOLD Schwarzenegger wants to be known as the Green Governor, a reputation he loves to promote. Well, in the next two weeks, he’ll have a chance to prove his commitment to that cause: SB 990. State Sen. Sheila Kuehl’s bill – which requires that the Santa Susana Field Lab be cleaned of toxins before it changes ownership – passed through a key legislative committee hearing last week. It has been approved by the Senate and has a fair shot at passing the Assembly when it goes to the floor either this week or next. But that’s where things could go wrong for this important piece of legislation. It’s unclear whether it will receive necessary support from the governor and Republican legislators, some of whom represent districts around the former Rocketdyne site. Lobbyists representing the site’s current owner, Boeing Co., have been working hard at the Capitol to prevent the bill from becoming law. And even if it does pass the Legislature, it faces the governor’s veto. That would be a mistake for Schwarzenegger. Not only would a veto call into question his commitment to the environment, it would indicate that his promises to be a man of the people mean very little when countered by the hard sell from a special-interest lobby. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more