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City Granted Appeal to State Supreme Court

By Chuck Hagee/Gazette Packet

Alexandria's zoning law suit against Mirant's Potomac River Generating Station, originally denied by the lower court in January 2006, has been successfully appealed to the Virginia Supreme Court, according City Attorney Ignacio Pessoa. In making the announcement to City Council Tuesday night, Pessoa indicated the process will take between six and nine months.

He also informed Council:

* The nuisance action against Mirant is being postponed until February 2007 in order to give the city more time to compile emission data from the North Old Town power plant and to garner more citizen complaints.

* The City has been placed on the agenda of the Sept. 25 meeting of the State Air Pollution Control Board to be held in the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality Piedmont Region Office, 4949-A, Cox Road, Glen Allen, VA, commencing at 10 a.m.

Flyers urging citizens to attend have been circulated by Elizabeth Chimento and Poul Hertel, original civic activists in the struggle to close Mirant's Alexandria plant. Those that cannot attend are encouraged to send e-mails to the control board care of Cindy Berndt, regional Coordinator, at emberndt@deq.virginia.gov. Those who wish to speak at the Sept. 25 meeting must arrive prior to 10 a.m. to sign up as a speaker, according to the flyer.

Pessoa also informed Council that July 26 the City asked DEQ for a "new source review analysis at the plant. This is the most stringent level of review possible," he said. It is expected to include construction underway at the plant on raising the height of the stacks.