To the Editor:
Passing essential legislation is often more difficult than it appears. And collaboration between House and Senate is essential if good ideas are be signed into law. Senator Mark MacDonald has become extremely skilled at getting critical bills passed and the Governor’s desk for signature.
Two bills of importance to the Upper Valley passed thanks to the great work of Mark MacDonald. Act 41 from 2016 enabled ECFiber to change its governance and financing structure so ECFiber could secure Wall Street financing to build our fiber optic network. ECFiber is designed, built and owned by Vermonters, without any taxpayer financing, it approximately half way towards the goal of completing a fiber optic network throughout all of our
24 towns. It was Senator MacDonald who took H117 and, working collaboratively with committees in both House and Senate, effectively assured passage. Without this bill, ECFiber would not be in the successful position it is today.
The second example is Act relating to Brownfield Remediation that I introduced several years previously. The Act enables polluted brownfields, many of which are subject to Superfund regulations, to be remediated and become fully productive. One such site sit was the abandoned Elizabeth Copper Mine in Strafford. Not many years ago the site contained 40 acres of
bright orange toxic acid mine waste that leached heavy amounts of iron sulfate into the West Branch of the Ompompanoosuc River. When it rained the river ran bright orange. Now the site hosts a 4.9 megawatt solar array producing renewal energy.
It was Senator MacDonald who took up the brownfields remediation bill that I had introduced and assured it’s passage in the Senate. Since then, the legislation has enabled several other Superfund sites to be cleaned up and put back into productive use. These are but two examples where Mark MacDonald has proven himself to be skilled, experienced and effective in assuring the good work results from our collaborative efforts. Please join me in voting for Mark MacDonald for Orange County Senate.
Representative Jim Masland
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