Michael Replogle, the author of ''Paving over a good decision'' (opinion article, May 28, Page 4A) would have you believe that I'm sponsoring a bill enabling highway projects to proceed even if they violate state air-pollution reduction plans. That is simply ridiculous.

My bill, S. 1053, will simply reinstate the rules that localities, regions, states, and the federal government negotiated, finalized, and practiced with success for several years. The Environmental Protection Agency said that these rules ''will not result in any negative change in health and environmental benefits.''I do not expect Replogle to support my bill. Replogle is an employee of the Environmental Defense Fund, whose lawsuit overturning EPA's conformity practices is what prompted my bill's introduction; however, I would recommend that he learn more about highway construction.

EPA's grandfathering rule was one of common sense. EPA listened to those involved in highway construction and those living in the communities and realized that highway projects are not built overnight.

Years of planning, designing, acquiring right-of-way, environmental assessments, etc., all have to occur before a project can be built. This can result in millions of dollars being expended before any concrete, asphalt, or steel is brought in.

Highway projects that could be grandfathered also had to be in a prior approved plan. A plan that met all the applicable requirements at the time it was approved by the locality, state, and federal government.

Localities, states, etc., cannot predict how Congress might change a law or what new regulations will be coming down the pike five or more years later. EPA's rule was based on real experience, not naivete.

For over 12 years in the U.S. Senate I have fought for infrastructure investment and clean air improvements. I will continue to do so.

However, I will not fall victim to an agenda that will result in curbing the freedom of Americans in this country to drive, work, or live where they desire. I do believe that this is the ultimate agenda of Mr. Replogle and his associates.



(Christopher S. Bond, a Republican, is the senior U.S. senator from Missouri.)

'Shipper' misuse



This is in reference to the editorial of May 24 (''A matter of definition,'' Page 4A) concerning inappropriate use of the term ''shipper'' by the mainstream print media.

I'm very pleased that The Journal of Commerce has at long last taken to task our colleagues in the general media who have consistently sustained this rather inexcusable and uninformed practice of writing ''shipper'' in place of ''ocean carrier'' or ''ship line.''

Sad to say, this errant custom is not limited to headline writers, but occurs all too frequently in copy authored by otherwise astute business-section writers who should know better, including some of those who cover the maritime and transport scene as their primary beat.

Laudable as it was, your editorial failed to cite what is probably the most flagrant misuse of ''shipper,'' that being in a current print advertising campaign by a prominent worldwide air and surface package carrier that refers to itself in the ad's tag line as - you guessed it - a ''shipper.''

The guilty party is none other than UPS and/or its current ad agency. Now there's somebody who should know better.


Senior Manager,

Port Operations

Port of New Orleans