Terrebonne wants more control over oil waste sites

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HOUMA, La. (AP) — Terrebonne Parish officials want the state to give communities more authority over where oil waste disposal wells can be built.

The Courier reports (http://bit.ly/1hxqhxf ) that the work on proposed legislation on the issue follows a state Supreme Court decision earlier this month that cleared the way for Vanguard Environmental of Houma to construct such a well close to a neighborhood. The company's position, upheld by the courts, is that a state law requiring a 500-foot buffer around such sites should take precedence over a local ordinance that requires a one-mile buffer zone.

State Rep. Gordon Dove, a Houma Republican, said he supports legislation to allow local governments control over oil waste disposal sites. Dove is chairman of the House Natural Resources Committee.

"Legislation needs to be changed to allow the parish to regulate it," Dove said. "The location of the injection well is of concern, and it should be up to local governments to decide whether or not to allow this sort of thing to be built near homes and churches and schools."

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Information from: The Courier, http://www.houmatoday.com

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