Legislators plan to block sale of Plum Island

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Northeastern legislators unhappy with the transition of the animal disease research center are sponsoring a bill to block the sale of Plum Island to a private party.

Once the laboratory is closed, the federal government plans to sell the island, which Newsday in Long Island reports is valued between $50 and $80 million prior to any cleanup work. Rep. Tim Biship, D-NY, introduced a bill Tuesday to block the sale of the 843-acre island.

The bill, named the “Save, Don’t Sell Plum Island,” would prevent the sale of the island to a private party. Bishop told the Associated Press the island is “one of the natural treasures of the Northeast," and the estimated value is drastically lower than its true value to the country.

In addition to Bishop’s proposal, a second piece of legislation from Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., supports the decision to block the sale of the island.

"We must ensure that future generations can enjoy the environmental and recreational benefits of open space, and preserve extraordinary natural resources like Plum Island," Blumenthal told the Associated Press.

The politicians acknowledge the ecological and recreational importance of the island and claim the sale of the island could compromise land use, air quality, water resources and biological resources in the area according to the Waterford Patch.  

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SD  |  July, 23, 2013 at 06:03 PM

How many pieces of very expensive property does our federal government currently have sitting idle, empty, and deteriorating, probably even being vandalized in Washington, DC, and in how many other places across the country? Since when is it better to add to that shameful debacle rather than sell it to the highest bidder????? Or do those politicians see 'opportunities' for themselves or thei constituencies/future re-elections in retaining such a valued property in government hands. Not that I'm suspicious, but it has happend all too often, and has been documented in recent books how such reprehensible activity has taken place and has enriched former, as well as sitting Congressmen and Senators.