Auburn Township thanked by Chesapeake

BY PAT FARNELLI

A representative of Chesapeake Energy attended the Auburn Township supervisors meeting on Tuesday, Sept. 7, to thank the supervisors for their “kind assistance” and genial relationship, and to notify them of road cut applications Chesapeake submits to the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation for state roads in Auburn Township.

Steve Newman of Gary Monroe Associates, representing Chesapeake, said the company will be seeking approval for a pipeline crossing State Routes 3004 and 3005, and although formal approval from township supervisors is not needed for work on state roads, he thought they might be interested in knowing of their intended pipeline construction.

“We can never have too much information,” said Supervisor Dan Trivitt. “We would like to hear (about rights of way and landowner notifications) so that we can keep up to date and get the drift of which way they are working.”

Supervisors addressed an impressive stack of paperwork from Chesapeake and Cabot Oil and Gas during the meeting, most of which were township road cut applications, notices of intent for gas well pads, access roads, and tank farms, and consumptive use of water permits.

Auburn Township has seen a great deal of gas well activity over the past few years, and supervisors praised Chesapeake in particular for their quality of work and their attention to detail in communicating with the supervisors.

“It shows their level of respect and appreciation,” said Supervisor Bert Hollister.

They said that Chesapeake put more money into improving Auburn Township roads this spring, than the supervisors could afford with the whole year’s allocation of funding.

Auburn Township has approximately 80 miles of dirt and gravel roads. The township has participated in the Pennsylvania Dirt and Gravel Program.

The township said that they have completed six projects so far this year, including Ace, Bennett, Beech Grove, and Carter roads.

“Chesapeake has built up the roads before they started working, and rebuilt several afterward,” said Supervisor George Gregory. “Roads are kept up, driveway pipes put in: everything we’ve asked for, we’ve got.”

The supervisors received thank you letters from State Sens. Gene Yaw and Lisa Baker for writing a letter objecting to House Bill 2431 and Senate Bill 1357, concerning powers being taken away from municipalities.

Two consumptive use permits for withdrawing up to 7.5 million gallons of water per day were received from the Susquehanna River Basin Commission for wells within the township by Chesapeake.

DEP also issued permits for 16 inch temporary water pipes to Cabot Oil and Gas, to be in place for three to six months for a Cabot gas well.

The supervisors said they have a clear title now for the GMC truck they recently purchased for township use.

Two township residents were cited for violation of the Clean and Green program, due to gas well activity on their property.

 William and Ed Burke will have to pay more than $4,000 in rollback taxes for five years in the Clean and Green program, for 32 acres.

 The supervisors said that many local property owners were disqualified from Clean and Green for gas well development, but that some “smart ones” had arranged for the gas drilling company to pay the difference as part of the lease. They said one property owner with over 2600 acres had a bill of more than $22,000.

A residential subdivision plan was approved for Eric and Kathleen Noldy.

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