at the Citizen Power Alliance 2010 Wind Conference
New Broome legislature may have different take on natural gas leases
|A major Election Day shakeup rocked the Broome County Legislature and crowned a new majority party, and it could have an impact on the debate about leasing county-owned land for natural gas extraction.|
Jerry Marinich, who is expected to be officially tapped by his Republican colleagues as the legislature's next chairman come Jan. 1, said he would allow land-owning legislators to decide whether to recuse themselves from resolutions regarding lease offers. That would mark a reversal from current chairman Daniel D. Reynolds, a Democrat, who acted on legal advice to bar four legislators from voting or discussing the offers because of their ties to landowner coalitions.
"I'm going to -- as a chair, unless I'm told legally I can't -- allow them to speak or vote if they so choose, unless they want to recuse themselves," Marinich said. "I'll leave it up to them to make their own choice."
Legislators Marchie Diffendorf, R-Kirkwood; Stephen Herz, D-Windsor; and Ronald Keibel, R-Whitney Point, belong to landowners coalitions and will return to their legislative seats in 2011.
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