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Virginia Uranium seeks to pay its way into lifting the uranium mining ban

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(Cross posted from Article XI – promoted by lowkell)

In what amounts to a paid vacation for 14 of Virginia’s state legislators, Virginia Uranium Inc. has reportedly financed a trip for the 5 legislators to visit a closed mine in western France.

According to the Washington Post, the closed mine in western France was mined for 50 years until the late 1990s.

The 5 legislators arrived in Paris on Wednesday and will soon be followed by 9 more this coming Tuesday.

The Post reports that the 5-day trip is expected to cost $10,000 per person, including a number of days in Paris.

Virginia Uranium is interested in ending the 1982 ban in Virginia on uranium mining and the General Assembly can do just that.

Aside from the fact that western France does not share the same ecological conditions as southern Virginia and cannot therefore be fruitfully compared with a high degree of validity, the trip appears to be more than a fact-finding mission by Virginia’s state legislators.

Indeed, the days spent in Paris appear to be an unethical way for Virginia Uranium to court the favor of the legislators in question, regardless of the similarities and supposed safety of the uranium mine in western France.

If Virginia’s legislators truly care about the interests of Virginians and the perceptions of their constituents, they will reject the offer to stay in Paris on the dime of a special interest whose goals are not in line with those of the rest of Virginia.

Many of these legislators will no doubt take the offer, however, rejecting all principles of ethical governance in the process.

But we’re only talking about the welfare of thousands of Virginians, right? No big deal.  

  • Elaine in Roanoke

    This is the state of our democracy today (not that it was different in earlier times.) Those who have the money and the influence get exactly what they want. The decisions made by legislators aren’t necessarily the best decisions if they are influenced by campaign contributions or free trips to Paris and beyond. We supposedly have a “representative” democracy, but when our representatives don’t care about our interests and instead represent vested interests, we are f#@ked.