Line 5 legislation bad deal for Michiganders

Our lame-duck Legislature in Lansing is considering a back-room deal between Enbridge Inc. and Gov. Rick Snyder. Introduced two days after the election, Senate Bill 1197 would guarantee the 65-year-old, damaged Line 5 pipelines remain operative in the Straits of Mackinac for up to another decade. This is a Canadian company, Enbridge, transporting Canadian oil through 650 miles of our state to get to Sarnia, Ontario where it is refined and used mostly outside of the U.S.

Does this sound like a bad deal? It gets worse. The Mackinac Bridge Authority is an independent agency, appointed by the governor, to operate and maintain the Mackinac Bridge as a self-supporting facility. However, language in SB 1197 would greatly expand the MBA mission. The additional requirements would be that the MBA oversee and own Enbridge’s proposed utility tunnel beneath the Straits of Mackinac. It would require that the MBA condemn land needed to build the tunnel and then supervise and operate the tunnel. And, worst of all, the MBA would become financially liable if Enbridge files for bankruptcy due to a pipeline rupture.

Corporate giant Enbridge gets all of the gain. And we, the residents of Michigan, take all of the risk. This is not acceptable. Why is Lansing willing to jeopardize the smooth operation of the Mackinac Bridge in order to pave the way for Enbridge to continue to pump 23 million gallons of crude oil each day through our state for up to 10 more years? Contact your state senator and state representative, tell them to vote NO on SB 1197. You can learn more about how to stop SB 1197 at Friendsofmackinacbridge.org.

ROBERT KENNEDY,

Harrisville