Shepstone Management Company, Inc.
Mike Krancer, former Pennsylvania DEP Secretary, rises to defend the DEP record and its staff, rejecting the assertions of the recent Grand Jury Report. Rebuttal reprinted from original with permission.
For several years I had the privilege to serve the citizens of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania as the Secretary of the Department of Environmental Resources. During that time, I made it my business to get to know and spend time with as many DEP personnel as I could. In my view, every single one of the more than 3,000 people, many of whom devoted their entire career to environmental protection are dedicated, honest and took their work at the DEP very seriously.
Those people left an indelible impression with me and it is because of them that I feel compelled to speak out forcefully against the Grand Jury Report. It would be inappropriate for me, as their former Secretary, to sit idly while 3,000 DEP personnel are attacked with broad brush. I know that the people at DEP never wavered from the law, never turned a blind eye to wrongdoing and always kept the safety of Pennsylvania’s citizens paramount.
I commend the current administration of DEP for its comprehensive 56-page written response to the Grand Jury Report which in many respects accurately describes actual regulatory and enforcement history and practices and is an appropriate defense of the work of the Department’s dedicated management and personnel.
Were we perfect? Of course, not and we never claimed to be. Did we make mistakes? Yes, we never claimed we didn’t. No government, much less any organization, is ever perfect. But to besmirch the entire Agency and all 3,000 employees as is done here is unfair. It would be no different than lambasting the entire Attorney General’s office because crime has not been eradicated.
Although my response is not intended to be an exhaustive refutation of each assertion in the Grand Jury Report, the essence of my response appropriately conveys more balanced and complete background regarding the subjects presented in the order presented in the Grand Jury Report.