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Southern Environmental Law Center rebuts Basnight on Oregon Inlet bridge

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Responding to complaints from state Sen. Marc Basnight about bureaucratic obstacles to a replacement for the deteriorating N.C. 12 bridge over Oregon Inlet in Dare County, a conservation group says Basnight himself is to blame for delaying the project.

Basnight urged President Barack Obama in a Feb. 24 letter to overrule federal officials he said were stalling a bridge replacement because they feared lawsuits from “out-of-state environmental groups.” Basnight, the state Senate leader, represents Dare County.

The Virginia-based Southern Environmental Law Center responded with a March 1 letter to Obama, advocating a bridge alternative that Basnight opposes.

“It was Senator Basnight’s intervention in 2003 that halted the process and prevented the construction of the Pamlico Sound alternative,” wrote Derb S. Carter Jr. and Julia F. Youngman, based in the environmental group’s Chapel Hill office. ... [MORE]

Basnight begs Obama to OK inlet bridge replacement

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Sen. Marc Basnight, a Dare County Democrat who leads the state Senate, implored President Barack Obama this week to sweep aside legal and environmental challenges and allow North Carolina to proceed with construction on a replacement for the Bonner Bridge over Oregon Inlet in Dare County.

In a letter dated Wednesday and released today, Basnight paints a scary picture:

Imagine for a moment a busload of school children traveling across the bridge. When the bus reaches the apex of the bridge's 3.3-mile span, the road collapses, sending the bus and all of the children into the water below. ... [MORE]

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