Tags: Bipartisan | Lawmakers | Oppose | Hillary's | Nuke | 'Security' | Scheme

Bipartisan Lawmakers Oppose Hillary's Nuke 'Security' Scheme

Monday, 21 January 2002 12:00 AM

Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Bob Graham, D-Fla., called on his congressional colleagues "not to overreact" by passing legislation to federalize nuclear security work forces.

"Don't adopt a one-size-fits-all mentality for nuclear power plants," Graham told reporters after touring Florida Power and Light Co.'s nuclear power plant in St. Lucie County.

Rep. Mark Foley, R-Fla., who represents the congressional district where the FP&L plant is located, also opposes federalizing nuclear plant security.

"Federalizing plant security workers is a slippery slope that will do absolutely nothing to help protect our nuclear power plants. Turning a private worker into a federal bureaucrat has nothing to do with protecting us from terrorism," said Foley, who accompanied Graham on the plant tour.

Foley did not return phone calls Monday seeking further comment.

At issue is legislation proposed by Sens. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., and Harry Reid, D-Nev., that would

"We can no longer leave the security at our nation's nuclear power plants to chance," Clinton said in a statement.

Reid noted that Congress agreed to federalize passenger and baggage screeners at airports. "It's time we focus the same energy to improve safety at nuclear power plants," he said.

Nuclear Control Institute, a group that watches nuclear proliferation and nuclear terrorism, says the security forces should be federalized as well, according to its president, Paul Leventhal.

"The nation's nuclear reactors are vulnerable to attack by terrorists, and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission and other government entities have failed to move decisively to impose further security measures that are needed to prevent a successful attack and avert catastrophic radiological consequences," said Leventhal.

But Nuclear Regulatory Commission Chairman Richard Meserve thinks the Clinton-Reid legislation addresses "a non-existent problem."

"Current security forces at sensitive NRC nuclear facilities are well-trained, well-paid and have high retention rates. There have been no failures in nuclear plant security of this type that has plagued the commercial airline industry and thus no need for such radical change," Meserve said in a statement.

According to Electricity Forum, private guards hired by nuclear plant operators handle security at the 103 nuclear reactors in 31 states. Although they carry weapons, they have no police power.

In several states, private security forces have been augmented by local or state police and by National Guard troops since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

Copyright

© 2019 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

   
1Like our page
2Share
Pre-2008
Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Bob Graham, D-Fla., called on his congressional colleagues not to overreact by passing legislation to federalize nuclear security work forces. Don't adopt a one-size-fits-all mentality for nuclear power plants, Graham told...
Bipartisan,Lawmakers,Oppose,Hillary's,Nuke,'Security',Scheme
382
2002-00-21
Monday, 21 January 2002 12:00 AM
Newsmax Media, Inc.
 

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved