News from all over this holiday weekend:
• Remember those formaldehyde filled trailers that FEMA provided to people displaced by Hurricane Katrina. Well, they’re back. “Some of the trailers, though, are getting a second life amid the latest disaster here — as living quarters for workers involved with the cleanup of the oil spill,” reports the New York Times.
• The fight in rural areas over transmission lines continues. Dan Byfield writes an op ed in the San Angelo Standard Times that “landowners across the Hill Country are learning that their pristine private property is now going to be condemned for a 260 foot right of way so the state can install 180 foot tall towers on their land. And when the electricity starts to flow, they can’t even tap into it because it will be a ‘pass through’ that only benefits big city users. Landowners are asked to accept the loss of their land, along with the value of their land with these eyesores, so people in Austin can flip a switch and not feel guilty because it comes from a ‘renewable resource.'”
•No wonder some parts of West Virginia don’t have broadband. The Charleston Gazette reports that the president of Mountain State College in Parkersburg misappropriated more than $2.4 million in state and federal grants aimed at expanding broadband.
• It turns out that Ohio won’t be having an election this year on animal welfare. The state and the Humane Society of the U.S. have signed a joint agreement urging everyone to update laws pertaining to farm animals, including banning some crates and cages and the use of strangulation as a form of euthenasia,” according to the Marietta Times.
• The House Appropriations Committee overseeing the U.S. Department of Agriculture has cut all funding for the voluntary National Animal Identification System (NAIS), the New York Times reports. The committee approved a $23 billion Ag appropriations bill that keeps intact the major conservation and energy programs passed two years ago. The committee rejected cuts proposed by the White House, the Times reports