U.S. Sen. Mark Udall announced Wednesday that he introduced “Good Samaritan” legislation that would provide legal protection for non-profit and other groups who would cleanup water contamination issuing from abandoned mines across Colorado.
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In the last 15 years, Washington lawmakers have introduced no fewer than 10 pieces of so-called Good Samaritan legislation– the majority of those laws introduced by Colorado legislators. The legislation is designed to provide legal protection for groups who take it upon themselves to clean up toxic waste. In Colorado, that means cleaning up acid mine drainage.
Why has none of the legislation passed? Good Samaritan groups say the most stringent opponents include major environmental groups with Washington lobbyists.
Six of Colorado’s seven representatives in Washington, D.C., signed onto a letter Wednesday asking Congress to suspend the state’s obligation to pay back more than one hundred million dollars in transportation funds, a sum that amounts to roughly 25 percent of the stimulus money received by the Colorado Department of Transportation for highways this year.