New Milford Twp. informed on seismic tests

BY PAT FARNELLI

New Milford Township supervisors learned Wednesday (Feb. 16) about what to expect from seismic testing about to happen.

Seismic detection by Geokinetics of natural gas reserves is coming soon to Brooklyn, Harford and New Milford Townships, according to Dennis Bunnell, a Jessup Township supervisor.

 Bunnell, on behalf of Cabot Oil and Gas, visited the New Milford Township meeting to apprise the municipality of technological changes in the seismic testing processes.

According to Bunnell, the surface units, often seen along roads or being dropped by helicopters, will now consist of a smaller battery pack with six geophones. The signals will no longer run to a command center, but will be picked up by helicopters, which will still be a major part of the process.

There will still be buried explosive charges that will be detonated by technicians on the ground, and there will still be thumper trucks on the roads, he said.

Bunnell added that the first sign of seismic testing will be white trucks on the roads labeled “Clean Harbors.” There will be technicians surveying the area for wells, springs, ponds, and quarries–anything that could be impacted by the seismic charges. It is important for property owners to make the technicians aware of less noticeable water sources, because the detonation of the buried charges could negatively impact or even shut down a spring or well, if they are close by.

In other business, Southwestern Energy has submitted applications to the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection for four lined water impound pits for gas well drilling sites. All are located on Three Lakes Road, on the O’Dell and Zeffer properties.

The Cramer and O’Dell No. 1 Quarry submitted an environmental protection air quality plan approval/permit to the supervisors, as well as an NPDES or general permit for stormwater associated with mining activities.

The supervisors noted that DEP logging is now completed on East Lake Road.

The township put the following road materials out for bid: 1Bs, 2Bs, 2RCs, 3s and 4s, DSA, and modified. Bids for road materials were awarded to Damascus 535 Stone Products. F.S.Lopke Inc.was named as an alternate.

Bids were opened for gasoline, diesel fuel, and fuel oil. Lindsey’s Oil Co. was the low bidder, at $3.041 for Feb. 14′s wholesale price. Diesel was bid at .04 off the pump price, for diesel pumped at the station. The supervisors voted to accept Lindsey’s bid.

The township will be advertising for bids for the following: a portable/on site stone crusher to crush their own materials, with a capacity of 5,000 tons, more or less.

One resident commented that she just wanted to thank the supervisors for the great job on maintaining the roads during the winter months.

The township is still seeking an auditor. The supervisors appointed Cindy Allen and Lori Moore as auditors until the upcoming election. The audit for the Columbia Hose Company is available for review.

The township’s 2011 working budget lists income at $551,964, and expenses at $456,072. During the reorganization meeting Jan. 3, the supervisors were named as: Chairman: Jim Hunter; Vice Chairman: Don Shibley; Road Master: Jack Conroy. The Solicitor is Mike Briechle; The secretary/treasurer, open records officer, and Right-to-Know officer is Julene Graham. The SEO is Tom Button, with Kevin Noldy as SEO alternate. The bank of deposit is Penn Star Bank. Pay increases for the three workers are for .25 an hour, starting April 1. The Secretary-Treasurer received $1 an hour increase, starting immediately, with an additional .50 starting April 1.

Township hours changed as of Feb. 1. The office hours are now Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., and every third Thursday, 9 a.m. to noon. The township meeting is scheduled for the third Wednesday of the month at 7:30 p.m. The next meeting is Mar. 16.

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