BP’s oil spill in the Gulf Coast has prompted older stories of BP’s mismanagement to rise to the fore. The stories are of political favoritism involving the White House, Department of Justice and the EPA, all undermining the good work that was trying to be done by bureaucrats doing their job.
As Gov. Douglas contemplates vetoes of last-minute bills passed by the Legislature, many of his supporters over the past eight years are appealing for his support of H.485, a bill that reforms the Current Use law. Douglas is considering a veto presumably because it restricts a landowner’s ability to enroll the land in Current Use for a short time to avoid higher taxes, then take the land out of the program to sell it at a premium. It is, in short, a loophole in the 30-year-old law that was created in the 1990s when a “development penalty” was weakened.