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April 4, 2014

BOCES to feds: Pipeline plan would ruin campus


The pipeline project has been endorsed by several major labor unions, Amphenol Aerospace, the majority of the Delaware County Board of Supervisors and several local business groups. Leatherstocking Gas Co., formed from a partnership between Corning Gas Co. and Mirabito Holdings Inc., is also urging the construction of the pipeline, saying it has hopes to connect Amphenol and some local communities with natural gas supplied by the pipeline.

Leatherstocking has asked that the state DEC’s request for a time extension be denied, noting that the state Public Service Commission would have jurisdiction over local distribution systems, not the DEC, and pointing out that the DEC’s concerns could be “fully explored” in future proceedings before the PSC.

The town of Davenport, in its filing with FERC, said it opposes the construction of the pipeline, noting it would traverse 128 properties in the town and pose a “significant hazard.” The town board also said that the pipeline would “substantially reduce Davenport’s tax base,” because property values would drop for impacted parcels, forcing higher taxes for the remaining properties.

So far, nearly 500 individuals and organizations have filed for intervenor status with FERC. A FERC spokeswoman, Tamara Young-Allen, said her agency would still review and consider comments even after the stated deadline of Monday. No decision has been made regarding the formal requests for an extension of the comment period, she said.

Young-Allen recalled that in one pipeline project from the 1990s, the Independence Pipeline in Ohio, about 7,000 intervenor requests were filed. While FERC approved the project, the applicant did not go forward with it, she recalled.

The major stakeholder in the Constitution Pipeline is Williams Partners of Houston. Joining Williams in the project are Cabot Oil & Gas, Piedmont Natural Gas and WGL Holdings.

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