The format of the public meetings was disappointing for sure. In Moscow, several folks had to remind Rep. Tom Trail that the "large group" Q and A was to have already begun. He told us the meeting should be "flexible" and since so many folks were chatting at the poster sessions with Exxon/IDT we should do that instead. Of course what this meant was that there was less time for serious Q and A. Cheers to the folks in Kooskie who forced the issue and changed to format of the meeting. I am curious as to what folks who attended that particular meeting thought?
Over 100 people came out to Kooskia City Hall in the heat to try to get some answers from ITD and Imperial Oil representatives on the proposed shipments along Highway 12. To start ITD/Imperial did not want to have a question and answer period but local residents were able to persuade them to have a question and answer period that lasted close to two hours. With only 2 people seeming to favor the project the overwhelming majority of attendants opposed the project citing safety issues, potential infrastructue problems with roads, bridges and pullouts, the negative impacts to the local economy, and the potential for an accident to happen to name a few. What struck many people was the lack of experience with highway 12 of the Imperial Oil representatives - yes, they had their engineering numbers and assured everyone that everything along the route had been laser tested to assure safe passage but their "plans" for any type of emergency or disaster relied heavily on the loads and the emergency being at certain sections of the highway that would allow traffic to pass. Imperial Oil admitted that this equipment can be made in Alberta, the reason they purchased it from Korea was to save money and possibly time - the same reason they give for using highway 12 when other options were not adequately researched. And they already had a route through the Panama Canal to Texas and North through the center of the U.S.The only question that was adequately answered was that ITD is doing everything in their power to assure that Imperial Oil is granted these permits. The most important thing for those of us opposed to do at this point is to write and/or email ITD and our state senators and representatives in Boise individually.