Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Easley announcement coming...

I spent my afternoon at the Agriculture Drought Response committee meeting at the legislature where Ag Commissioner Steve Troxler told lawmakers how they can help farmers and the drought.

But the more interesting story came from Gov. Easley's Senior Advisor Franklin Freeman.

He says as early as next week, Gov. Easley will unveil several proposals to help with the current drought and future droughts as well.

The proposal would force some communities to put mandatory water restrictions in place. The restrictions would vary depending on what level of drought that community is facing. Currently towns and cities can decide when and how to put restrictions in place. Essentially a minimum level of restrictions would be required for each level of the drought.

"That doesn't mean they can't do more but at least we know from a minimum standpoint what a municipality is doing presently we don't, there's no minimum standard," Freeman said in an interview.

Another proposal would allow the state to keep better tabs on private wells. Gov. Easley also wants more power to get water to cities in desperate situations much faster. His proposals would all need approval from the state legislature.

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