Citizens are entitled to hear where their elected officials stand —Leigh Touchton

This comment from Leigh Touchton came in today on “Because it would be monitored. -jsq
Two weeks ago I delivered the official NAACP letter to all City Council members (and Mayor Fretti) asking for a written response as to their position on biomass and selling reclaimed water to the Wiregrass, LLC, proposed incinerator.

No response. Not one.

I have heard that at least two Council members refuse to do so because “it might be used against them.”

Citizens are entitled to hear where their elected officials stand on these issues. At least Councilmen Vickers, Wright, and Yost have stated publicly that they support biomass, even though black infants are already dying in Valdosta at a rate twice as high as white infants. According to Mr. Wright,

he simply doesn’t believe the health risks associated with biomass combustion.

According to Mr. Yost, whose daughter has asthma and participates in outdoor sports, the health risks documented by American Lung Association, American Cancer Society, American Heart Association are not credible, nor are the other medical publications in Pediatrics journals that WACE gave to him. Mr. Yost works for the Special Olympics? If I were the parents whose children he makes decisions about, I would be down there asking some tough questions, like since when does he put the needs of business to make a profit over the needs of children to breathe clean air?

Hasn’t it occurred to him that his daughter’s asthma will be exacerbated if this biomass incinerator gets built? Doesn’t he know that ASTHMA KILLS? As I’ve stated repeatedly, the death rate due to asthma in the black community is 2-3 times higher than in the white community. Since the Southside Community is already designated an Environmental Justice community by the EPA, siting another incinerator nearby is going to increase the mortality and morbidity rates for this segment of our population, but also for others in Valdosta, LIKE MR. YOST’S DAUGHTER.

If I still lived in Yost’s district I would run against him. He called me up 8 years ago and asked for my support when I dropped out of the City Council race (I had just learned that I was pregnant with my dear daughter) and I gave him my support then. There is no way I would ever recommend this politician to anyone in Valdosta, he obviously cannot think rationally. As a mother, I am literally sickened to see these men behave the way they are behaving. Shame on all of them. I hope the voters rise up.

-Leigh Touchton