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YOUR VOICE NEEDED THIS THURSDAY, JULY 28TH! Join your neighbors at TCEQ public hearing

If you are concerned about the significant shortcomings of the proposed Agreed Order that the TCEQ and Exide are crafting to determine how much of the toxic emissions from Exide’s aging, and poorly maintained lead battery recycling plant will continue to contaminate the air with lead particles that fall in the heart of our community (and EPA reports indicate concerns about area soil and water), and if you are concerned about how little local input is involved in that process, then you definitely will want to make plans now to be at Frisco City Hall next Thursday, July 28, when TCEQ officials come to Frisco to hear public comment and gather your input.

This is a multi-step process that started with the public hearing in Austin on June 22, where Frisco’s voice really was not heard. A public comment period that allows citizens to submit concerns, comments online and/or in writing began June 24 and will end Aug. 8

Then there is the upcoming public hearing here on July 28, and then all public comments must be gathered and organized by Aug. 8. On Dec. 7, TCEQ commissioners will consider the final approval of the proposed Agreed Order and SIP.

Here is a copy of the official meeting notice from the TCEQ:

NOTICE OF PUBLIC HEARING BY THE TEXAS COMMISSION ON ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY (TCEQ) ON PROPOSED REVISIONS TO THE STATE IMPLEMENTATION PLAN AND AGREED ORDER BETWEEN THE TCEQ AND EXIDE TECHNOLOGIES

The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) will conduct a public hearing to receive comments concerning proposed revisions to the state implementation plan (SIP) under the requirements of Texas Health and Safety Code, §382.017; Texas Government Code, Chapter 2001, Subchapter B; and 40 Code of Federal Regulations §51.102 of the United States Environmental Protection Agency regulations concerning SIPs. The proposed Collin County Attainment Demonstration SIP revision would incorporate Federal Clean Air Act required elements, including a reasonably available control technology analysis, demonstration of attainment through air dispersion modeling, a control strategy demonstration, an emissions inventory, a demonstration of reasonable further progress, and contingency measures. (Project Number 2011-001-SIP-NR)

The control measures and contingency measures identified in this proposed Collin County Attainment Demonstration SIP revision will be enforceable through an Agreed Order between the TCEQ and Exide Technologies. (Project Number 2011-024-MIS-NR) A public hearing on these proposals will be held in Frisco, Texas, on July 28, 2011, at 6:00 p.m., at the George A. Purefoy Municipal Center, 6101 Frisco Square Boulevard, City Council Chambers. The hearing will be structured for the receipt of oral or written comments by interested persons. Individuals may present oral statements when called upon in order of registration.

There will be no open discussion during the hearing; however, TCEQ staff will be available to discuss the proposal one hour prior to the hearing. Persons who have special communication or other accommodation needs who are planning to attend the hearing should contact Holly Brightwell with the Air Quality Division at (512) 239-4905. Requests should be made as far in advance as possible. Comments may be submitted to Holly Brightwell, MC 204, Air Quality Planning, Chief Engineer’s, Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, P.O. Box 13087, Austin, Texas 78711-3087, or faxed to (512) 239-5687. Electronic comments may be submitted at www5.tceq.texas.gov/rules/ecomments/. File size restrictions may apply to comments being submitted via the eComments system. All comments pertaining to the Collin County Attainment Demonstration for the 2008 Lead NAAQS SIP revision should reference Project Number 2011-001-SIP-NR. All comments pertaining to the Agreed Order should reference Project Number 2011-024-MIS-NR.

The comment period closes on August 8, 2011. Copies of the proposed SIP revision can be obtained from the TCEQ’s Web site at http://www.tceq.texas.gov/implementation/air/sip/texas-sip/criteria-pollutants/sip-lead. For further information, please contact Holly Brightwell, Air Quality Planning Section, (512) 239-4905.

Your voice, and that of your friends, family and neighbors are very important. If you have concerns about Exide’s continued impact on our community, and if you are concerned that the State of Texas – via the TCEQ – and the lawyers and lobbyists for Exide may not be taking the best interests of our local community into consideration as they work together to craft an agreement, that right now asks Exide to do very little beyond what it already is legally required to do, then please share this information (and this article) with everyone you know!

And, remember to make plans now to join us at City Hall on July 28th!

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