During the 2009-2010 session, Jamie filed the following pieces of legislation to protect our environment:
This bill requires producers of electronic waste (e-waste), — i.e. computers, televisions and printers, — to be financially responsible for the proper disposal of their end-of-life products. The bill aims to vastly reduce the amount of hazardous chemicals leaching into landfills from e-waste disposal, by increasing public accessibility of e-waste recycling, while also taking the financial burden of collecting and recycling e-waste products off of municipalities and placing it instead on the manufacturers.
This bill will reestablish a separate fund into which the proceeds from all unredeemed bottle bill deposits collected are deposited. The deposits shall be used solely for programs and projects to manage solid waste and protect the environment.
An Act Prohibiting the Use of Plastic Carryout Bags in Certain Stores
The widespread use of plastic bags has serious consequences for the environment, such as littering our coastlines, using up billions of gallons of petroleum a year, leaching toxic chemicals into our soil and water, and killing millions of animals each year. This bill will reduce the number of plastic bags used in Massachusetts each year by prohibiting the use of plastic carryout bags in many stores, requiring them to use reusable cloth bags and/or paper bags. This legislation would exempt small stores, defined as those with less than $500K in annual sales. It also exempts bags such as those found in fruit and vegetable aisles and in applications where small loose hardware is sold.
This bill will encourage recycling in multi-family units by requiring the owner of any apartment building with three or more units OR any condominium association consisting of three or more units to provide the means and materials necessary to allow tenants or owners in those units to recycle paper, glass containers, and certain common plastics.
An Act Protecting the Natural Resources of the Commonwealth
In 1972, the Massachusetts voters approved an amendment to the state Constitution, Article 97, granting the people of the state the right to clean air and water, and other “environmental” benefits. However, the pressure to convert public land protected by Article 97 is growing as development pressures increase, as vacant land becomes more expensive, and as the demand for land to be used for schools, easements, parking lots, utilities, and other services grows. This bill provides protection for our public lands by requiring other sites be evaluated before Article 97 land is developed and requiring that if Article 97 land is taken for development, open land is purchased to replace it. This bill codifies the existing “ad hoc” system legislators and the Administration currently rely on to conduct their “due diligence.”
An Act Regarding Notification of Oil and Hazardous Waste Materials to Tenants
This bill requires landlords to notify their tenants prior to signing a lease if the premises have experienced a release of toxic materials or oil contamination. This bill is important to the safety of tenants and lessees, and critical to ensure that contamination of rented and leased properties is properly reported to the DEP.
An Act Establishing a Wildlife Management Commission: This bill would establish a legislative commission for the purpose of evaluating and recommending non-lethal and lethal methods which shall be available to wildlife managers and the public, to successfully manage and co-exist with the following animals: beaver, muskrat, coyote and moose.
This bill requires the Department of Environmental Protection to adopt regulations establishing standards for restoring and maintaining stream flow in the rivers and streams of the Commonwealth. In addition, the bill updates the state’s dam safety statute, allows for municipal water banking and sets up a Special Water Infrastructure Finance Commission.
An Act to Establish the Water Infrastructure Finance Commission
This legislation would establish a water infrastructure finance commission charged with developing a comprehensive, long range water infrastructure finance plan for the Commonwealth and its cities and towns. The commission will specifically look at the funding gap between water infrastructure needs of the Commonwealth and existing available sources of funding and will develop recommendations as to new funding or finance measures that might be needed.