Keller Among Trifecta of Officials Calling for DEP Permitting Process Delay
5/6/2013

LEWISBURG – On May 3, an afternoon press conference at the Union County Government Center in Lewisburg produced an unprecedented show of solidarity among state, county and local elected leaders representing the greater Union County community.

State Representative Fred Keller (R-85th District), Union County Commissioners Preston Boop, John Showers and John Mathias, and White Deer Township Supervisors Carroll Diefenbach and Larry Seibert were all on hand presenting a united front in asking Pennsylvania’s Department of Environment Protection(DEP) for at least a ninety day delay for additional fact-finding and public input in this current phase of the permitting process for proposed Union County Tire-Derived Fuel Steam and Power Generation Plant in White Deer Township. White Deer’s third Township Supervisor Don Wilver, Jr. was out of town for business and unable to participate.

This trifecta of elected officials also announced their formal request of DEP to make the public record in regards to the application of En-Tire Logistics and National Gypsum available to county and valley citizens at a location more convenient to the immediate neighbors of the plant than the Williamsport Regional DEP Office.

Rep. Fred Keller said, “I am pleased to announce that the Regional DEP Office had already agreed to my request to make a duplicate record available in Union County.”

Commissioner Preston Boop further explained, “Both the public record and supporting documents from En-Tire Logistics and National Gypsum will be available as early as Monday, May 6, 2013, at the Union County Public Library at 255 Reitz Boulevard (Brookpark Farm) in Lewisburg. Concerned citizens are invited to review the records in this central library location available at extended hours beyond those of a normal government office.”

The elected officials’ press conference was a follow up to the previous evening’s (May 2) DEP Public Meeting and Hearing held on the Union County Tire-Derived Fuel Steam and Power Generation Plant application held at the Warrior Run Fire Department in Allenwood.

White Deer Township Supervisors chair Carroll Diefenbach characterized that meeting as, “A most contentious exchange between concerned citizens and officials of the DEP and the companies pursuing the permit.

White Deer Supervisor Larry Seibert added, “Apart from the question of to build or not to build a tire incinerator, citizens last evening expressed great displeasure in the fact that this DEP permitting process only allows eleven more days for public review and comment.”

Citizens also voiced major objections to the only availability of the public record in regards to the application being at the DEP Regional Office in Williamsport during routine working hours.  The trifecta of elected officials did not at this point oppose the application and permit.

Union County Commissioner John Showers said, “A responsible course of action requires consideration of all the questions and issues in regards to a tire-derived fuel plant. Taking a “not in my backyard” position at this point neither sends a sound message to the business or the environmental community.

Representative Keller added, “And, an eleven day period for further investigation and public comment sends a clear message that the government is not working in the best interests of all segments of our community. Citizens are demanding more time and we officially join their chorus this day.”

Union County Commissioner John Mathias concluded the press conference stating, “I wish to reiterate our offer to the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection that our previous offer still stands to use our county facilities to hold additional public meetings on this application. An open process begs for more dialogue between our citizens, DEP, and company officials.”

For the latest legislative updates, visit RepFredKeller.com.

Representative Fred Keller
85th District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Contact:   (570) 966-0052
Share |