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Cheap Oil Prices Put Bellingham Cleanup Projects on Hold

Posted on January 12, 2016

By Samantha Wohlfeil, The Bellingham Herald

Several major cleanup projects in Whatcom County have been put on hold as low oil prices have severely undercut state cleanup grant accounts.

Nearly $14 million allocated to $28 million worth of cleanup projects in Bellingham and Blaine in the state’s current biennial budget are in the lurch until lawmakers, scheduled to start their session Monday, Jan. 11, decide to shift money around or approve another way to fund those projects.

Washington’s toxics cleanup program is funded with a voter-initiated rule called the Model Toxics Control Act, which places a 0.7 percent (70 cents per $100) charge on the wholesale value of hazardous materials that enter the state. That money is then divided into three accounts.


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