St. John-based environmental nonprofit the Island Green Living Assoc. is encouraging Virgin Islanders to show their support of recycling and waste reduction legislation by contacting senators or attending a Senate hearing on Tuesday at 9 a.m.
In the Earle B. Ottley Legislative Chambers on St. Thomas, senators will hear testimony on proposed bills focusing on plastic bag regulation and measures to reduce the amount of recyclable and compostable waste that finds its way into the territory’s landfills.
“It is crucial that the people of these islands make their voices heard on these important proposals,” IGLA President Harith Wickrema said in a press release Friday.
“This needs to be a total community effort. Join us on Tuesday in person. E-mail, write or call your senators as soon as possible and tell them you support recycling and solid waste reform in the U.S. Virgin Islands.”
The public may also testify on the measures, Wickrema said. Comments may be submitted in writing and made part of the official record.
IGLA, which assisted in drafting the proposed legislation with the goal of creating a plan to keep the territory’s lands and waters cleaner and extend the life of its landfills, will be among those testifying on Tuesday. Wickrema said it is critical that the community demonstrate a broad base of support for the measures.
“This is about our health, our economy and our general quality of life,” he said. “We hope to see our fellow Virgin Islanders on Tuesday – and please take five minutes and make a call or send an email to your senator.”
Wickrema said that Sen. Marvin Blyden, who is chairing Tuesday’s hearing, has pledged to pass on any emails or letters he receives to colleagues. Blyden can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 340-693-3568 His office can also provide more information about participating in Tuesday’s hearing, Wickrema said.
E-mails for other senators are available on the Legislature’s website: legvi.org To reach any member of 31st Legislature call 340-774-0880 or 340-773-2424.