“Blunt instrument” bill would prevent LEED certification for state government buildings
WNC Rep. Michele Presnell is a primary sponsor of the Protect/Promote NC Lumber bill moving in the N.C. House, joined by Buncombe County's Nathan Ramsey as co-sponsor. The bill (HB 628), just passed in the Agriculture Committee, promotes the use of North Carolina timber in state construction and renovation of state buildings. According to an industry representative, N.C. tree farms do not typically do not meet LEED sustainable forestry standards. Presnell, a freshman legislator representing Haywood, Madison and Yancey counties, was quoted as saying adherence to the prestigious certification standards "ignores quality wood grown within our own borders." Henderson County Rep. Chuck McGrady, former national president of the Sierra Club, voted against the bill, calling it a "very blunt instrument." All three WNC legislators are Republicans.