LYNN’S LIST FOR NOVEMBER 23, 2020
There is exciting news about the coronavirus vaccine and if you’re like me, you have a lot of questions. This article explains it in simple terms for your information. Even if you get the vaccine, masks will be in our future for a while.
Protection of the Environment
The Okefenokee Swamp, one of Georgia's seven natural wonders, is the largest blackwater swamp in North America. It is now threatened by a proposed titanium mine. We advocated against Twin Pines Minerals mining company on the federal level, but now the Administration has found a way around the comments. The federal government changed rules in the Clean Water Act which will allow the mining company to proceed with its heavy mineral sand mine without any federal oversight. The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service has written that, "should impacts occur, they may not be able to be reversed, repaired or mitigated for." The company proposes digging 50-foot deep trenches in Trail Ridge, the area that helps regulate water levels in the swamp. These excavations would extend below the water table of the swamp and could alter water levels in the swamp.
Our only recourse to save the swamp from this proposal is for Governor Kemp to request a study to determine how the Okefenokee Swamp could be impacted by mining along Trail Ridge.
Contact Governor Kemp with the suggested script:
Protect the Okefenokee Swamp! Stand with tens of thousands of citizens concerned about Trail Ridge mines that risk hundreds of tourism jobs and millions in economic benefits provided by the swamp. A comprehensive study evaluating the environmental and economic impacts of mining on Trail Ridge should be conducted before state mining permits are issued in this area.
Protection of Civil Liberties
A great news update on the status of Deferred Action of Childhood Arrivals (DACA):
On November 14, a U.S. Court District found that Chad Wolf, who was serving as the Acting Secretary of Homeland Security, did not have the legal authority to serve as the Acting Secretary when he issued his July 2020 memorandum limiting the the availability of DACA, and therefore that his memo was issued unlawfully. As a result of the Batalla Vidal v. Wolf decision, the Department of Homeland Security should return the DACA program to its initial form — reopening DACA to first-time applicants, restoring work authorization and renewals.
Also, did you sign last week’s petition to Emily Murphy of the General Services Administration (GSA)? Administrator Murphy has yet to acknowledge President-elect Biden as the incoming president, thereby withholding funding and key national security briefings from the Biden transition team. The petition was delivered and it contained over 240,000 signatures. Since she has ignored repeated requests to release funding, this week, it is time to call and email the GSA with the suggested script: My name is ---- and I am from ----. It’s time to admit that Joe Biden is President-elect and for you to release the transition funding as required by law. Your inaction undermines the orderly transition of power, impairs the incoming Administration’s ability to respond to the coronavirus pandemic, hampers its ability to address our nation’s dire economic crisis, and endangers our national security.
Fair and Representative Elections
The Senate runoff and the runoff for Public Service Commission District 4 IS TUESDAY JANUARY 5, 2021.
Request your absentee ballot now at mvp.sos.ga.gov
December 7, 2020 is the last day to register to vote.
Early voting begins Monday December 14, 2020.
If you are interested in registering young voters by sending them handwritten postcards to register young voters, this is a non-partisan group called the Civics Center. Young people in Georgia can register and vote in the runoff if they will be 18 by January 5, 2021. Your messages will let them know their votes count. There is a fee.
The link to your legislators is here.
There will be no Lynn’s List next week. Happy Thanksgiving to all. Please follow the CDC’s guidelines for the Thanksgiving and upcoming holidays. Make sure you stay safe, wear a mask, wash your hands, and keep your distance.