News

Rep. Goolsby no friend of "fresh clean air"

October 27th, 2008

The League is issuing a Press Release in response to Rep. Tony Goolsby’s interview on KERA Radio this morning, where he states, in part:

“I know that we’re working hard with the Texas air quality. And the new power plants that are being built, they’re going to be adding on to nuclear, which helps the fresh clean air. The new coal plants, they’re not going to be putting out as much of the carbon monoxide.”

Here’s the press release.

Rep. Tony Goolsby No Friend of “Fresh Clean Air”
Incumbent Misstates Support for Clean Air Environmental Initiatives

Rep. Tony Goolsby may have misled voters and misstated his environmental record in an interview aired today on KERA Radio in Dallas-Fort Worth. In the interview, reporter Bill Brown states, “Goolsby defends his records, saying he’s always…supported clean environmental initiatives, including alternative forms of energy like wind, solar and nuclear.”

“Rep. Goolsby’s record, in fact, does not indicate much support for clean air at all,” said James Canup, Executive Director of the Texas League of Conservation Voters. “Looking just at the votes in the last legislative session in 2007, Rep. Goolsby voted against clean air and clean energy the vast majority of the time, earning a grade of F in the League’s 2007 Legislative Scorecard,” he added. Specifically, in 13 particular votes last session (detailed at the end of this release), Rep. Goolsby voted against clean air and clean energy 10 times (and in the remaining 3 votes, 2 were consensus measures that passed the House unanimously). Moreover, when you look at all of the votes with environmental impacts cast last session, Rep. Goolsby’s voting record is an abysmal 30%.

Going back to prior sessions of the legislature, Rep. Goolsby scored 23% in the 2005 session, 31% in the 2003 session, 4% in the 2001 session and 31% in the 1999 session, giving him an average score of 24% for the past five legislative sessions.

In the interview with KERA, Rep. Goolsby went on to say, “I know that we’re working hard with the Texas air quality. And the new power plants that are being built, they’re going to be adding on to nuclear, which helps the fresh clean air. The new coal plants, they’re not going to be putting out as much of the carbon monoxide.”

This statement, though unclear, appears to indicate Rep. Goolsby’s support for improving Texas’ air quality. But his voting record says otherwise.

“Representative Goolsby may say he is for ‘fresh clean air,’ but his voting record is among the worst of any House member when it comes to supporting clean air legislation. The real clean air candidate for District 102 is Carol Kent,” said TLCV’s Canup. TLCV-PAC endorsed Carol Kent for District 102 over Rep. Goolsby.

The Texas League of Conservation Voters (TLCV) is the nonprofit, nonpartisan organization devoted to turning environmental values into priorities for Texas. Through its Political Committee, the League works to elect pro-conservation candidates to the Texas House and Senate. The Political Committee has endorsed a slate of pro-conservation candidates and incumbents for Texas who will vote for clean air, clean water and clean energy in Austin.

Read and listen to the KERA interview here.

View the TLCV 2007 Legislative Scorecard here.

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The Votes

  1. Toxic School Bus Pollution. Would have protected children from exposure to dangerous chemicals by providing funds to clean up diesel emissions from Texas school buses. Rep. Goolsby voted AGAINST.
  2. Dirty Coal (I). Provided fast-tracking and tax breaks for coal-fired power plants. Rep. Goolsby voted FOR dirty coal plants.
  3. Dirty Coal (II). Improved emissions for approved coal-fired plants. Rep. Goolsby voted FOR dirty coal plants.
  4. Reducing Toxic Air Emissions. Amendments proposed to SB 12 that would have reduced toxic air emissions. Rep. Goolsby voted AGAINST reducing emissions.
  5. Tracking Pollution Levels. Would have installed more air quality monitors in Dallas area and other parts of Texas. Rep. Goolsby voted AGAINST monitoring air quality.
  6. Dirty Coal (III). The Senate/House conference committee bill for coal plants did not include enough protections for clean air. Rep. Goolsby voted FOR dirty coal plants.
  7. Cumulative impact of toxins on Texans’ health. Would have required TCEQ to consider the cumulative impacts of toxins and other pollutants before issuing air quality permits. Rep. Goolsby voted AGAINST stricter permitting requirements.
  8. Retrofit diesel trucks. Rep. Goolsby voted, along with every other House member, to increase the funding for retrofitting diesel engines.
  9. Clean Energy. Would have directed $60 million from Emerging Technology Fund to cutting edge renewable energy technologies. Rep. Goolsby voted AGAINST this clean, renewable energy proposal.
  10. Clean Energy. Would have required at least 15% of Emerging Technology Fund to be used for cutting edge renewable energy technologies. Rep. Goolsby voted AGAINST this clean, renewable energy proposal.
  11. Making Renewable Energy Count. Fixed a loophole limiting the growth of wind energy in Texas. Rep. Goolsby voted AGAINST this popular measure, with only 16 other House members.
  12. Energy Efficiency. Improved electric utility conservation programs building codes and energy saving efforts. Rep. Goolsby, along with every other House member, for improved efficiency programs.
  13. Tax Incentives for Nuclear Plants. Provided property tax breaks to build nuclear power plants. Rep. Goolsby voted FOR tax subsidies for nuclear plants.