Home > Misc > June 10, 2012 Newsletter for our Bucks County Moveon – Penn Action Group

June 10, 2012 Newsletter for our Bucks County Moveon – Penn Action Group

image from kozzi.com

1.  Monday Evening meeting – PLEASE RSVP!!  June 11 – Monday at 7pm.

This Monday is our first evening meeting for our core group in this new series.  PLEASE RSVP so that we know how to set up the room!

7pm at Joan and Sally’s house.  We will give you the address when you email us that you are coming!


2.  Thursday June 21, 4pm  Petition Drop off at Fitzpatrick’s office!


3.  Move Your Money continues! submitted by Cathy Leary

photo from kozzi.com

Quaker group takes on PNC Bank

By Crissa Shoemaker DeBree Staff writer | Posted: Sunday, June 3, 2012 12:00 am
Brad Berry walked into the PNC Bank branch in Morrisville Friday and closed his bank account.
For most, that would be an unremarkable event. But for Berry, and the small group of people who accompanied him, the closure was designed to send a message.
Berry was among an unknown number of people who began closing their PNC Bank accounts Friday to protest the Pittsburgh-based bank’s lending to companies that perform mountaintop removal coal mining, a controversial form of mining in which the tops of mountains are removed to access the coal underneath.
“Money talks,” said Berry, 31, of Falls. “I think that doing an action with such tangible effect as removing money from a system is really powerful.”
For two years, the bank and its lending policies have been targeted by the Earth Quaker Action Team, a group promoting “a socially just and environmentally sustainable economy” through the use of nonviolent direct action, said team board member Jonathan Snipes.
“We believe that lobbying, education, legislation, advocacy — all those things are important,” said Snipes, a Falls Township supervisor and a farmer. “But they need to be backed up with people willing to put themselves on the line for what we say we believe. Nonviolent campaigns are a crucial part of social change and a crucial part of people participating in a democratic system.”
Snipes said the group chose PNC Bank as the target of its first campaign — called “Bank Like Appalachia Matters” — because that bank is the largest lender to companies that perform mountaintop removal projects.
Quaker team organizers say such mining violates federal Clean Water Act standards and has led to increased rates of health problems for people living in the region where such mining is done. The group has identified about $500 million that PNC has lent to mining companies that perform the procedure.
“There are many environmental and social issues that people are working on and we might have chosen,” Snipes said. “But looking at the environmental practices that are the most egregious, mountaintop removal is right up there among the most environmentally destructive industries in the country.”
PNC Bank spokesman Fred Solomon declined to comment Friday.
But in its 2011 Corporate Responsibility Report, the bank said it didn’t lend to individual mountaintop removal projects or to any coal producer that receives a majority of its production from such mining.
“This policy arose from our consideration of the legal, regulatory and public policy developments concerning MTR activities and the mining industry, as well as discussions with various stakeholders throughout our communities,” the bank report stated.
“PNC acknowledges the concerns that have been raised about the environmental and community impacts associated with extraction of fossil fuels, including the horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing methods used to obtain natural gas, and the surface mining practice known as mountaintop removal, which is sometimes used to obtain coal. The companies that rely on these methods to meet our energy demands have come under increasing scrutiny, and we monitor the environmental, safety and compliance records of our customers,” the report continued.
The Earth Quaker Action Team is demanding more.
The group, Snipes said, wants PNC to agree not to lend to any company that does any amount of mountaintop removal mining. Last month, members walked from Philadelphia to Pittsburgh to protest the bank’s policies and gave PNC a deadline of May 31 to change its policy.
When it didn’t, members began closing their bank accounts Friday.
Berry said he would take the nearly $8,000 he withdrew Friday and put it in a new account at Hatboro Federal Savings, a small, community bank.
Snipes didn’t know how many individuals would close their accounts, but said the group has gotten commitments from people who had more than $2 million with the bank. As of March 31, PNC reported deposits of $206 billion.
“This is just the beginning,” Snipes said. “We’re hoping to gain more traction as we go along.”
4.  99% Declaration Convention!
From our favorite delegate nominee – Steve Cickay!

The updated list of grievances may be found here: http://www.the99declaration.org/full_text. You may submit grievances, ON OR BEFORE JUNE 15th, by emailing the99declaration@gmail.com. Be sure to put “New Grievances” in the subject line.

All questions about the election, bug reports and problems with voting
should be directed to support@votenet.com at Votenet solutions and
someone will address your issue. We have had issues with ballots and
voters for which we did not have the correct zip code+4 which might
result in your getting the wrong ballot.

5.  Voter ID, registration, and more…
Robin is working so hard on these projects.  Please contact her to ask questions, and/or volunteer to help!!

Robin Stelly, Organizer Penn Action

c: 203.216.9719

6.  June 14 – House Movie and Discussion at Mike Sullivan’s!
                The Koch Bros out of the shadows and into the spotlight
                               10 shocking facts about the Koch Bros
                                        KOCH Bros. EXPOSED
                                        the 1% at its very worst
                    Come see the movie on June 14th at 7:00pm at
                                      116 Indian Creek Dr
                                       Levittown, Pa    19057
Meet members of the Bucks County Moveon.org and Penn Actions groups. We work to inform and help see positive changes in our area for our families and the county, the state, and the US.

You are welcome to join us at events, and at our weekly planning meetings!

Our Core group meets every Wed. at 1pm at Joan and Sally’s house.  New Core members are always welcome.  This is where we plan, keep updated on news from Moveon and Penn Action, and share ideas.  email for directions sallykwitt@gmail.com.  

We are adding an evening meeting once a month on the 2nd Monday at 7pm, same place.  Please RSVP at sallykwitt@gmail.com for each meeting so that we know to expect you.

Getting Letters to the Editor, and Guest Opinions printed is so important.  Let us know if you are willing to write, or if you need help writing one.  Contact Frank Arcoleo Frank.Arcoleo@verizon.net or Bob Mason robmas1@verizon.net for ideas or help.  

Robin Stelly – Penn Action
Joan King, Sally Witt

Moveon.org Bucks County Coordinator –  Mike Sullivan

We are now doing a weekly newsletter for our larger group.  Questions, or suggestions can be sent to sallykwitt@gmail.com.

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