“I’m amazed at how someone could dare say…”

Brad Lofton responds to Leigh Touchton’s letter of 16 September 2010.


Date: Sun, Sep 19, 2010 at 7:54 AM
From: Brad Lofton <blofton@industrialauthority.com>

Good morning Kay, Sandy et al.

Our unprecedented effort of educating the public included numerous public hearings, briefings with all elected officials, the VDT Editorial Board and groups all across Valdosta. We’ve even spent a great deal of effort trying to brief the NAACP leaving messages and making numerous phone calls to Leigh Touchton that have never been returned. We’ve spent more time educating the community on this project then the sum of any other projects we’ve worked combined. I’m amazed at how someone could dare say that we’ve not informed the public. The vast majority of her concerns for our project would have been answered two years ago if she had come to any of our forums or if she would at least answer her phone when we call. Now that we’re moving into the third year of due diligence, she’s concerned all of a sudden.

Our project enjoys support from the state EPD, the Federal EPA, the Obama Admn, the state dept of economic development, the County Commission, and hundreds of environmental groups nationwide (including the Sierra Club for biomass if it is done in a sustainable way). The facility will share the same technology as three of our existing industries today.

We’ve created a problem for the Mrs. Touchton after she’s been on the record twice now at the City’s Board of Education meeting and via a letter to the Editor discussing the environmental racism aspects of this project. In fact, based on Census data the SGRC provided us, the surrounding site has not two, not five, but seven times the number of white permanent residents compared to minorities within a mile radius of the plant site. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but not the facts.

We stand behind this green, renewable energy project, and we appreciate all of your support. We would be happy to correct her missinfomation for you or anyone you’d like for us to discuss this with at any point. Fortunately, we’ve been invited to present to the VLD Board of Ed on 9-27 to clean up all the errors presented at the last meeting.