|From:||CPEO Moderator <email@example.com>|
|Date:||1 Oct 2003 15:43:31 -0000|
|Subject:||[CPEO-MEF] Groups want time to study Stryker report|
Groups want time to study Stryker report
By Diana Leone, firstname.lastname@example.org
October 1, 2003
Environmentalists are complaining the Army isn't giving the public enough time to review and comment on a three-volume environmental impact statement released yesterday about its planned Stryker brigade in Hawaii.
The environmental report "has more than 1,000 pages of core text, plus appendices," said David Henkin, an attorney for EarthJustice. "There are 11 pages of acronyms alone. The public is being asked to wade through a mountain of paper in the bare minimum of time that regulations require for public comment."
Public meetings are tentatively set to begin Oct. 28 on Oahu and conclude Nov. 6 in Hilo on what's expected to be one of the largest military construction projects in the islands since World War II. The Army's total price tag for local construction is $693 million.
The Army will allow written comments until 45 days after the Environmental Protection Agency publishes availability of the document in the Federal Register, which is expected soon, Army spokeswoman Maj. Stacy Bathrick said.
After holding public hearings, the Army may extend the comment period, Bathrick said, but waiting 90 days between the EIS release and the hearings, as requested by the Sierra Club, is "not part of our plan at this time."
"This is a massive transformation that's impacting many branches of the military and more than one island," said Jeff Mikulina, Sierra Club state director. "It's imperative to include the community every step of the way and ensure the broadest community participation. Clearly they're going with the bare minimum."
The draft report explains what environmental and cultural effects it expects from the transformation of the 2nd Brigade of the 25th Infantry Division (Light) at Schofield Barracks to a Stryker Brigade.
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