New fracking law questioned

Republican lawmakers claim lack on environmental review compromises law

— “I really thought it was important to get it passed as soon as possible,” Clenahan said. “In general I was very happy it passed. … I think most people recognize the importance for health and safety.”

Legislature Chairman Shawn Morse said he doesn’t believe the law needed a SEQR.

“The Democratic Party is making sure that poisonous chemicals are not being sprayed all over public streets that could actually allow children or other people to come into contact with those chemicals. It is very disappointing that the Republican Party is more concerned about the business than the people they represent,” Morse said.

Mary Rozak, spokesperson for Albany County Executive Dan McCoy, said the county executive has 30 days to hold a public hearing on the issue to see if the law should be vetoed. Rozak said McCoy and his legal team will investigate if an environmental review should have been conducted.

“He’s taking a hard look to make sure that there are no violations. He most certainly will take whatever action is necessary,” Rozak said.

If a SEQR is conducted, Rozak said the cost could range from nothing to $100,000, depending on the size and scope of the project and the anticipated impact on the environment.

Benedict said she thinks the chances of the law being revisited are “slim to none.”

“If someone wanted to bring a lawsuit against the county, they could do that because there was no SEQR. My guess is … (from) everything that I’ve been told and have read, the county would have a case on their hands,” Benedict said.

Clenahan said if McCoy were to veto the law, he would ask the legislature to override the veto.

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