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Reed: Inergy study should be released

    READING—Congressman Tom Reed (R-Corning) held a public meeting at the Reading town hall on Saturday, April 22. Some 20 people attended.
    Reading is also the location of a proposed $40 million liquid gas storage and transfer facility by Inergy. When asked if Inergy’s quantitative risk analysis (QRA) of the project should be kept confidential, Reed said he supported transparency. He said that unless the QRA contained compelling security issues, it should be available to the public.
    Inergy filled the QRA with the New York State Department of Public Transportation in early March. The state replied on March 20 with a letter saying the QRA should not be confidential. Inergy replied the document contains confidential commercial information and/or critical infrastructure data. However, David Bimber, DEC regional permit administrator, said that on April 20, the Freedom of Information Law appeals officer also backed the DEC’s decision on the QRA. Bimber said if Inergy wants to contest the ruling again, the company has 15 business days to take the DEC to court under Article 78.
    At Reed’s town hall meeting, the congressman was also asked about authority of agencies, the tax code, spending, and the national defense authorization bill. Residents at the meeting had concerns about the extended powers of the government.
    Reed was asked about an expansion to the clean water act about what “moving water” is. Reed said the wording is open enough the agency in charge could interpret any source of water as impacting “moving water.” He said one solution to an agency over controlling something is to put a spotlight on it. Reed explained that highlighting in public when an agency oversteps its responsibilities, “cures a lot of the problem.”
    One resident asked about the concern in the national defense authorization bill that some people think would limit a citizen’s due process rights. Reed said many bills with similar wordings have been written since after 9/11. He explained removing a U.S. citizen’s due process rights goes against the constitution. Reed said reforms have been proposed adding wording that make it clear a U.S. citizen’s due process rights would not be affected.
    Reed was asked about the redistricting of the area his office covers. He said the 29th Congressional district will become the 23rd. He explained 65 percent of the existing district will be in the new area. Reed added that the district moved south and expanded outward.
    Another resident asked about changing the tax code because of the forms and regulations necessary under the current system. Reed said talks about this end up being about how it replace the code with another kind of code and what different exemptions and provisions could be added.



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