County planners endorse 537 plan for Lake Carey
BY ROBERT L. BAKER
Wyoming County Press Examiner
TUNKHANNOCK – The Wyoming County Planning Commission gave its endorsement last Wednesday to a plan put forward by county planner Paul Weilage in support of an Act 537 sewage plan for Lake Carey.
The planning body was meeting after the deadline had passed for public input with the plan’s submission to the state Department of Environmental Protection, and said they just wanted to go on record as supporting the push to look for a way to creating sewer service for the big lake and flow pond, Weilage said.
He noted that he reviewed the plan put forward by Milnes Engineering on behalf of Lemon and Tunkhannock Townships and consultant Harleth Davis and found everything in order.
In other business, the planners granted final approval for a Southwestern Energy land development in Lemon Township and the Chapin Deydration Facility in Monroe Township.
While the former passed unanimously the latter had a bit of discussion after commission member Jon Howard asked if the issues residents had brought to the body’s attention a year ago regarding safety concerns had been adequately addressed.
The facility had a release of gas on Sept. 30 with noise that startled nearby residents as well as some farm animals and concerned emergency responders because a protocol that was supposed to have been followed appeared to have been ignored.
Howard noted that when the plan was originally before the body it was through the auspices of Chief Energy, but that earlier this year the Marcellus Gathering Line assts of Chief had been sold to PVR Partners.
Walt Derhammer, who chairs the planning body and is a Monroe Township supervisor where the facility is located, said he was not notified until six hours after the incident had occurred in September.
While he admitted the lag time concerned him, he had since had discussions with personnel from PVR and felt things were under control.
He also noted that the safety concerns were not the purview of a land development.
However, Howard said, “When we pass these things we’re not doing them for our health,” and he felt there was some obligation to listen to the public when it raises issues.
Commission member Rich Fitzsimmons said there was an utter breakdown in communications with the September incident, and he didn’t feel comfortable giving final approval until everyone was satisfied.
Derhammer called for a voice vote, and Fitzsimmons then called for a roll call. The motion to give final approval passed 4-1-1, with Fitzsimmons voting no and commission member Marta Kovacs-Ruiz abstaining. Chairman Derhammer did not cast a vote.
The Planning Commission also heard a proposal by the Gas House Gang about three lots in which developers were selling frontage along Rt. 29, north of Tunkhannock but retaining back acreage for a space that it is proposed to build a gas station.
Although the issue passed it was stated the plan for developing the property would still have to come back before the body.
Also on the table, just for discussion, was a plan by Bill Kelly to relocate Taylor Rental BX3 Oil Field Supply in Tunkhannock Township about a half mile east of the space it presently leases.
No action was taken as Kelly said he did not hold deed title, but would be back.