Well, if the whiny MR. S Burns, Assistant Deputy General Counsel, and one John P. Boska are examples, it seems that Commissioner Diaz's task force on improving stakeholder out reach was a wasted effort. First, it should be noted, that the Commission itself admitted in 2003 that the NRC's communication with, and interactions with members of the public living around nuclear reactors is...well, PATHETIC. In fact, in the commission report from 2003, it seems that the NRC does not have any kind of viable program in existence to keep us informed...though, they did get accolades for their communications with the nuclear industry, and all those who SUPPORT IT.
The task force instructed NRC staff, and specifically the Office of Public Awareness to create a set of recommendations to improve the NRC's involvement with members of the stakeholder community, instructed the NRC to take steps to be more RESPONSIVE to stakeholder concerns. Well, if Mr. Burns and his Snidley Whiplash side kick Mr. Boska are any example, the NRC some four years later still does not give a flying crapola about members of the general public, has no problems telling us to go to hell, and stay out of the NRC's business.
Last week I became aware of a meeting between the NRC and Entergy North East regarding reactor issues for Indian Point. I had some problems with the meeting, least of which was the location of the meeting in Rockville, Maryland...it should be noted here, that the commission itself has noted citizen involvement at meetings held in Rockville is NON-EXISTENT, and encouraged NRC staff to find ways to correct this....uhhhh, such as holding said meetings in the STAKE HOLDER COMMUNITIES? I called up Mr. Boska who (putting it mildly) seemed irritated that a mere citizen who dare interfere with NRC business...in fact, in his exact words, I was told I would have OTHER OPPORTUNITIES to be involved with Indian Point! Ignoring the mindless babble, I formally requested that said meeting be postponed/rescheduled when said meeting could be held in the HOST COMMUNITY.
Boska, changed a few things around and sent me out an email this morning maintaining Friday's meeting...So, I called up the NRC office of General Counsel where Mr. Burns (who for some odd reason instantly reminded me of either Pee Wee Herman, or Squiggy from Laverne and Shirley) petulently got on the phone, obviously upset that a member of the general public was interfering with his day...in his whiny little voice he gleefully told me there was NOTHING I COULD DO TO STOP THE MEETING, that I was not entitled to redress, that the NRC COULD AND WOULD do what it wanted, when it wanted.
At that point, I elevated the matter to Mr. Talmidge in the Commissioners office...right now, waiting to hear back on that one. What disturbs me, is that the Commission admits there is a serious problem with the public's involvement in the process, the Commission has instructed NRC staff to come up with ways to correct this inadequacy, and yet staff seems hell bent to CHEAT US out of our rightful involvement at every chance they get. Maybe, just maybe Mr. Burns and Mr. Boska should take their lead from the Commission, and ENCOURAGE PUBLIC INVOLVEMENT in the process by abiding by a citizen's request to hold an important meeting about Indian Point in the host community? WHAT A RADICAL CONCEPT!
In 1996 Chip Cameron was content to ignore stakeholder rights, and now a decade later, NOTHING HAS CHANGED.