Tuesday, February 7, 2006

Contact(s): Senator RobertLetourneau

SenatorRobert Clegg

Senator ChuckMorse 

Senator TedGatsas

SenateRepublicans: Conservation Law Foundation Law Suit is Frivolous

CONCORD –The Conservation Law Foundation(CLF) yesterday filed a federal lawsuit stating that they are suing the Stateof New Hampshireover the plan to widen the I-93 corridor. The CLF brief cites a violation ofthe Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and other related environmental statutes;the suit is seeking a court order to prevent the start of construction.

Senate Finance Chairman Chuck Morse (R-Salem) began, “I’mdisappointed the CLF has chosen to litigate in an effort to halt the expansionof I-93. They have a total disregard for our constituents and for the positiveeconomic outcome of this project.” “This is a reckless attempt tostop a long term project, and the result, if successful, will be devastating tothe New Hampshireeconomy,” continued Senator Morse.

Senator Bob Letourneau (R-Derry), Chairman of the Senate TransportationCommittee, added, “I’ve worked tirelessly on the I-93 widening projectin hope of bringing relief to the escalating traffic and safety concerns.”NHDOT has estimated that nearly eighteen bridges are in disrepair. SenatorLetourneau continued, “CLF has put public safety in jeopardy with thislawsuit. The accusation that this process has been conducted in a back-room manneris completely false. The public and CLF has had input throughout this fiveyear planning process.”

Senate Majority Leader Bob Clegg (R-Hudson) pointed out, “Thesetypes of law suits are precisely the reason the Senate passed frivolous lawsuit legislation. If enacted, the proposed legislation will prevent CLF fromputting their interests ahead of public safety needs. CLF should be ashamed oftheir actions. They have inspired us to work diligently to ensure thatlegislation to end frivolous lawsuits passes this session.”

CLF has been involved throughout the 5-year planning process of theI-93 expansion and supports rail transportation as the only viable alternativeto widening. “CLF has made an extreme last ditch effort to impose theirextreme agenda before a serious public safety issue. Their actions, whilepredictable, are simply unacceptable,” ended Senate President Ted Gatsas(R-Manchester).