New Whitmer commission wastes time, money, LaFave says

Categories: LaFave News

State Rep. Beau LaFave today said he was disappointed in Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s decision to squander more taxpayer dollars on Line 5 studies, rather than continue negotiations to reach a deal with Enbridge.

“I am deeply disappointed that in addition to wasting precious time during peak construction season when significant progress could be made getting Line 5 off the Straits’ floor and safely into a tunnel underground, Gov. Whitmer now sees fit to waste taxpayer dollars on a sham closed-door commission that will undoubtedly be packed with her own political allies,” said LaFave. “A study of this exact issue was already conducted in 2017 that showed an energy pipeline underground is the safest—I repeat, safest—and cheapest way to deliver the energy resources all Michiganders are counting on, whether it’s to heat their homes or to transport and produce the commodities they use every day.”

The study, conducted by Dynamic Risk, evaluated six possible alternatives to the current Line 5 and ultimately concluded that housing the tunnel 100 feet below the floor of the Straits inside a utility tunnel was the safest option.

“The governor can’t simply toss out facts she doesn’t happen to like,” LaFave added. “Other methods, like trucking, would put the stress of 2,150 additional tanker trucks on our roads. In addition to denial of these realities, a commission unilaterally controlled by the governor’s office is completely lacking in transparency.”

LaFave noted he has asked the governor for a meeting for months, and she has refused to meet.LaFave also said he was disappointed in Whitmer’s failure to offer decisive leadership on the issue when Whitmer walked away from negotiations earlier this week.