Friday, October 3, 2008

Clean Water Action and Sierra Club Score State Legislature on Environment Votes

Clean Water Action and Sierra Club Score State Legislature on Environment Votes

(Harrisburg) – Sierra Club and Clean Water Action released today a “Pennsylvania General Assembly Environmental Scorecard” which rates state legislators on their voting record on environmental issues in 2007 and 2008.

The Scorecard covers a range of environmental issues tackled by both the State House and State Senate over the past legislative session. Votes on the Scorecard include ones on air quality, energy, climate change, open space, transportation, and environmental funding.

The Scorecard is available for download at either or at .

Myron Arnowitt, State Director for Clean Water Action, stated, “The state legislature tackled some important environmental issues over the past two years, including funding the cleanup of our toxic waste sites, and funding alternative energy programs. However, critical work is left undone, including helping residents save on their energy bills through energy efficiency, and protecting the safety of our drinking water supplies.”

Dennis Winters, Political Chair of the Sierra Club Pennsylvania Chapter, said, “Many of the issues included in this Scorecard affect the health, safety of Pennsylvania’s citizens and the environmental we all depend on. We believe that the public has the right to know how their elected officials vote on these matters, so they can hold their legislators accountable. The public interest is better served when these decisions are exposed to daylight.”

Two State Senators, Vincent Hughes (Philadelphia) and Michael Stack (Philadelphia) got perfect 100% scores. Close behind were Senators Ferlo (Allegheny), Fontana (Allegheny), Kitchen (Philadelphia), Tartaglione (Philadelphia), and Anthony Williams (Philadelphia) with 90% scores. The highest scoring Republican Senator was Stewart Greenleaf (Bucks) with an 80% score.

Sixteen State House members scored a perfect 100%: Bennington (Allegheny), Casorio (Westmoreland), Freeman (Northampton), Hanna (Centre), Josephs (Phila.), Kessler (Berks), Leach (Montgomery), Lentz (Delaware), Mundy (Luzerne), Roebuck (Phila.), Samuelson (Lehigh), Santoni (Berks), Taylor (Montgomery), Vitali (Delaware), Wagner (Allegheny), Walko (Allegheny). The highest scoring Republican Representative was George Kenney (Phila.) at 90%.

The lowest scoring Senators were Mike Folmer (Lebanon) at 10% and John Eichelberger (Blair) at 20%. The lowest scoring House member was Bob Bastian (Somerset) who scored a 0%.

Sierra Club is national environmental organization that was founded in 1892. It has 10 local Groups in Pennsylvania, representing over 27,000 members. The Sierra Club works to protect and restore the natural and human environment through education and advocacy.

Clean Water Action is a national, member supported, environmental organization working to protect our waters, build healthy communities, and make democracy work for all of us. Operating in Pennsylvania for 25 years, Clean Water Action has over 100,000 members in the state.

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