Home > Uncategorized > During “Environmental Justice” Panel, NJ Gov. Murphy’s DEP Rep. Brags About Corporate Investment Background

During “Environmental Justice” Panel, NJ Gov. Murphy’s DEP Rep. Brags About Corporate Investment Background

DEP Deputy Commissioner Pledges That DEP Regulations Will Not Deter Corporate Investment

Echoes of Biden’s Pledge To Wall Street: “Nothing Will Fundamentally Change

Look, I’m wasted in the Sonoran desert and absolutely terrified by the night sky, so I must be brief.

For tonight, a very quick note – which I will followup on soon with details when I can work off the transcript – regarding the NJ Spotlight Roundtable on the so called “landmark” environmental justice legislation recently signed into law by NJ Governor Murphy.

I’ll admit that I’ve never watched a NJ Spotlight panel discussion before, and was especially skeptical of this one, given how much I’ve written about the flaws in the EJ law, the panelists, and the last minute participation of NJ Gov. Murphy and NJ’s US Senator Booker.

No doubt, the NJ Democrats are trying to make this an important NJ state and even a national issue – and Gov. Murphy is using it as a second term electoral issue –  which has relevance in light of the Biden transition.

Let’s just say that I was deeply disappointed by the discussion.

The climax of the discussion came when NJ Business and Industry (NJBIA) VP Ray Cantor – formerly the Christie DEP Deputy Commissioner – claimed that the legislation would create uncertainty that would discourage private corporate investment in NJ.

Challenging that assertion – not on its merits, but from the Wall Street corporate right – was Murphy DEP Deputy Commissioner Shawn LaTourette, who bragged about his own prior private sector experience in the investment community and pledged that DEP’s regulations would in no way impede Wall Street or corporate investment.

Get that? A DEP Deputy Commissioner was more supportive of corporate investment than the business community’s lobbyist.

Given that extraordinary, unprecedented, and and absolutely jaw dropping DEP claim, I wrote the following to NJ Spotlights’ editor John Mooney:

John – 2 quick comments/requests on the EJ panel roundtable:

1) your sponsor (engineers union) spent over 1 minute of their 5 minutes on spewing factual falsehoods. Specifically, the EJ law explicitly exempts site remediation (and therefore brownfields and their cleanups).

DEP LaTourette and one EJ panelist vaguely alluded to this falsehood as “misinformation”, but did not explicitly correct it.

Because they were a sponsor, it is incumbent on NJ Spotlight to either publicly correct the record, or request that the engineers’  union correct it.

2) I urge you to post a link to the entire unedited video and to post a transcript as well.

DEP made some extraordinary statements about regulation and private sector investment that demand accountability. What DEP’s LaTourette said – especially about his prior career with private investment community – was unprecedented and highly revealing, particularly coming from a Wall Street Governor’s policy spokesperson.

The same holds for Ray Cantor’s grossly misleading statements about 250,000 manufacturing jobs lost since 1990 – clearly a false insinuation that environmental regulation caused those job losses.

Obviously, I don’t need to tell you that – as Senator Booker’s participation signaled – this is an emerging national issue with transition to a Biden administration underway.

Spotlight owes full disclosure not only to its NJ readers, but to a national audience.



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