Bob McDonnell’s record of results from his years as a Delegate and Attorney General can be seen all across Virginia. As Attorney General, he championed legislation to ban the use of phosphorus in detergents for household dishwashing machines and asked for legislation to be introduced to use environmentally sensitive cleaning products in schools. He also successfully filed suit to stop a wastewater treatment operator from polluting the Shenandoah River. He established a Regulatory Reform Task Force which revised and improved environmental regulations.
As a legislator, Bob McDonnell supported several efforts to protect the Chesapeake Bay, including establishing an income tax refund for contributions made to help restore the Bay. Bob also supported the Virginia Water Quality Improvement Act of 1997 to dedicate funding to address water pollution, as well as the Open-Space Lands Preservation Trust Fund. As Governor, Bob McDonnell will continue to support initiatives aimed at protecting our beautiful natural resources here in the Commonwealth. He is committed to protecting our environment using innovative technology, pollution prevention programs and holding polluters accountable. His key priorities will be to:
- Protect the Chesapeake Bay and Virginia’s Watersheds
- Preserve 400,000 new acres of open space
- Establish Virginia as a “Green Jobs Zone” to encourage renewable energy technologies
Bob McDonnell will be a champion for Virginia’s largest industry, include representatives from the community in policy decisions affecting their industry and will not over-burden this industry with regulations that do not take into account proven results from existing voluntary and required approaches.
- Ensure that the Secretary of Agriculture’s top priority is finding new markets in the U.S. and abroad for Virginia’s farm products.
- We will work with collaborative groups to identify adequate and stable sources of funding for the Agricultural Best Management Practices Program – both for cost-share and Soil and Water Conservation District operations.
- We support a comprehensive energy plan that includes offshore drilling for oil and natural gas to help lower long term fuel costs for farmers. McDonnell also supports further research and development of renewable energy sources, but will be sure not to put the burden on farmer’s backs.
- Many farmers already have nutrient reduction programs in place on their farms. The McDonnell administration will work with the farming community to determine what plans are already in place, and evaluate their success or failures so that we can best determine how to move forward. We will not just put more regulations and mandates on the farming community without accurately knowing what they are doing already.
- We will continue to promote more farm preservation and keeping farms as working farms. In April, Bob McDonnell announced his goal of preserving another 400,000 acres of open space.
- Provide incentives for the development and use of the latest seed trait technology to improve yield and resistance to disease and insects while reducing chemicals which are a contributor to non-point source pollution.
- Before they are implemented, we will review all the regulations and Executive Orders issued by the current administration to ensure that they do not place undue costly burdens on agriculture.