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Eldred hires hydrogeologist to advise on water extraction

Published August 07. 2015 04:00PM

The Eldred Township board of supervisors voted Wednesday to engage the services of Philip Getty of Boucher and James Inc. to advise the township on issues related to water extraction.

Currently, Deer Park, a Nestle Waters NA company, is in the process of monitoring a number of test wells in the township.

Deer Park is hoping to extract water from the wells for resale as natural spring water.

Supervisors Gretchen Gannon-Petitt and Mary Anne Clausen interviewed an engineer from Hanover Engineering, the township's current engineering provider and Getty for the position.

"I was very impressed with Getty, he seems very knowledgeable and he has a lot more experience specifically with water," said Gannon-Petitt said.

Getty agreed to meet the same price as Hanover which had bid $97 per hour. Getty's firm also agreed to charge a lower rate when employees other then Getty worked on the project.

According to Gannon-Petitt, Deer Park has agreed to reimburse the township for the cost of the hydrogeologist.

Residents remain concerned about more than just the water extraction.

"What about the roads, what about some of the other issues, like truck traffic," asked Robert Boileau.

The supervisors also said the residents have repeatedly requested a public meeting to address their concerns regarding the water extraction.

"I believe that it is best to give Mr. Getty a chance to visit the site and review all of the information provided by Nestle before we schedule the meeting," Gannon-Petitt said. "That will give him an opportunity to better address your concerns."

The hiring of the hydrogeologist does not offer consolation to all of the residents.

"You let this in, you let it happen. We do not want this," said JoAnn Bush. "We want to know that our supervisors are behind us. We don't think that you are."

Clausen made a motion to make a request at the next CJERP meeting to consider changing the definition of water extraction to a shared use.

Supervisor Sharon Solt seconded the motion, but added that it was something to have the solicitor review before proceeding because she was concerned that it might cause Nestle to sue the township.

Community notes

The township supervisors issued a proclamation naming the week of Aug. 9 as Donna and Hunter Deihl Week. The mother and son duo recently rallied their Kunkletown friends and neighbors to break the world record for total number of people playing Monopoly in the same place at the same time.

On Saturday, July 25, 448 people gathered at Blue Mountain Ski Area and broke the previous record of 316. The Deihls are currently awaiting word from the Guinness Book of World Records to confirm that they have, in fact, broken the record.

On another note, the community center, located in the old elementary school continues to add new classes and has a full slate of activities and events planned for the next few months.

Check out the community center page on Facebook for more information.

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