Thursday, December 1, 2016

Dec 2, 2015 - the beginning of the end for Nestlé in Kunkletown, and the beginning of research of the Beemer Water Company

A year ago on December 2, 2015, this blogger set foot in Kunkletown, Eldred Township, for the first time in 19 years.  The purpose was to attend the Eldred Township Board of Supervisors meeting that evening.  While one senior Kunkletown resident asked subtle questions about deeded water rights of the township solicitor, as he had reportedly done in previous meetings, a scan of the packed meeting room revealed concern on the faces of many residents.  As some spoke, the tension was palpable.  A few furtively glanced in my direction as if to say "who is the guy in the corner sitting behind the pimp, and what's his story?"

Who is the joker?

Nestle had completed draw down testing for a planned site in Kunkletown, and residents were petrified of the prospect of a water extraction operation.  This is was what I came for, and I was primed.  I had researched case law, and was eager to see a trap set and eventually sprung on the leeches who were hoping to take advantage of a miscarriage of municipal procedures, and drain Kunketown's groundwater supply.

One resident blurted out to Supervisor Gannon Pettit "hell, you're sleeping with the damned property owner!!!"   Ms. Gannon Pettit smirked and coyly replied "do you think that's why I got this job, to make this happen?"  The devil on my shoulder silently yelled "yes!"  Another resident acted like a student who had missed her afternoon meds; she was irrational.  She couldn't restrain herself from yelling and flailing about in her seat , and stormed out halfway through the meeting. The constable adjusted himself in his seat.  Another resident was concerned that her critical kidney treatments, from an in-house system that uses water, could be affected.  I was in the right place, and please pass the popcorn.  With butter.

One colorful resident in attendance was visibly upset

I intently listened to the proceedings, and took mental notes.  Nestle water pimp Eric Andreas was seated right in front of me - the target was dead ahead and taking his own mental notes.  The hunter was being hunted.  Not wanting to underestimate my well-funded prey, I kept quiet until near the end of the discussion.  I raised my hand and spoke to a point of order - not wanting to raise too many eyebrows, but wanting to make it clear I was familiar with the subject so the spider would be concerned he may need to weave a larger web.  Sure enough, Mr. Andreas took the bait and introduced himself.  I informed him we had nothing to speak about.  Not very subtle, but the message was sent that I was playing at an intermediate level, not a beginner.

Watching your backside... sometimes it isn't enough

By June, Eric Andreas was headed out of town on the horse he came in on, disgraced and possibly looking for a new job.

Kunkletown K-O's pimp in full frontal assault

Deeded water rights of neighbors to water on Gower property
The resident asking about deeded water rights was Terry Kleintop, who lived in a house next to the Gower property in the 1950's, and chipped in as a young man to maintain a water supply on the Chestnut Ridge that supplied at least six properties, including the residence of Mr. Kleintop and his parents.  Mr. Kleintop reported that there was a reservoir on the ridge, and a pipe system that brought water down, under the Buckwha, and to a distribution point on what is currently the Prutzman property.  Pinky Prutzman confirmed this, and said that this system was still in operation in the 1960's.  Mr. Kleintop reported that the reservoir had a plug like a cork that was the size of a basketball.  This would be removed annually and the reservoir drained and the walls cleaned.  Both Mr. Kleintop and Mr. Prutzman indicated that their deeds gave them the right to go on the Gower property and repair or reconstruct this system.  Mr. Andreas feigned ignorance of this detail, which is odd since rights to water was what this project was all about.  Due diligence and all that.

This blogger loves a good mystery, so he set about attempting to locate said reservoir, the pipes that it fed, and researching the deeds that might convey such rights.

Unnamed tributary on Gower property is actually Spruce Run
Easier to find than the reservoir was the tributary that Mr. Kleintop indicated ran down the gorge and the reservoir was located on.  Determining the name of said tributary was more difficult.  A map was located that showed the name to be "Spruce Run" - aptly named for the lush landscape in question.  See the bottom, beneath the millrace and pond, formed by Beemer Dam.
In the picture above, not shown is Beemer Dam, which created the pond and made possible diversion of water to the mill race for the grist mill - today the eyesore known as the old mill.

Without further ado - the Beemer Water Company
This blogger set about attempting to locate the reservoir that was the heart of the rumored water supply.  This was not an easy task.  Erosion has taken its toll in the area in question, with large trees scattered like toothpicks and tall banks washed away.  However, the deeds of neighbors in fact made reference to a reservoir on the Gower property, and pipes, Spruce Run and the Beemer Dam.

In 1926, Mr. Beemer owned the Gower property by virtue of the fact he was the Trustee in the bankruptcy of the Chestnut Ridge White Brick Company.  Beemer deeded rights to the owner of the current Prutzman (nee Christman) property, Francis Greenzweig.  Mr. Greenzweig then subdivided these water rights to five others.  The following diagram is an aerial view from 1938, with lot lines shown from the current county GIS, and lot owners from 1926.  There was a small reservoir on the Greenzweig property at the distribution point, possibly for feeding livestock.

Details of water supply system located on Gower property, on Spruce Run

Deeded rights to enter Gower property and repair water delivery components
An excerpt of the deed from James Beemer to Francis Greenzweig, which conveyed the initial rights to the Beemer Water Company, follows.  Those whom Mr. Greenzweig subdivided his water rights to have deeds that refer to this document to define their rights.  In this manner, the present day heirs/property owners of said parcels have a right to the water in Spruce Run, as Mr. Kleintop suggested during the board meetings in 2015.  This would have given them rights in the lawsuit that was filed in the Court of Common Pleas.  Nestle representative and water pimp Andreas claimed to have never been able to locate this language.  Maybe he didn't look.
Deeded rights to water on Gower property and entry to property to repair water supply system

Remains of Beemer Water Company
There is little left of the reservoir that Terry Kleintop remembers.  He reported there was a low dividing wall in it, and that DEP personnel confirmed they found remains of such a structure on a site visit in 2015.  The outer walls were said to be about waist high, and maybe 20' wide by 35' long.  Tributaries entered from multiple angles at the rear.  This blogger is a novice, but located features that appear to be of the same structure - wall sections and 5" pipe.

Fortunately, all this water company research became moot when Nestle withdrew.  It should be mentioned that there are others who use water from the Gower property, and adjacent parcels - some deeded, some not, fed through pipes coming from the south side of the Buckwha.  What is sad is very few of these people had the balls to speak up or stand in solidarity against the ill-conceived Nestle project.  You can bet that if Nestle's operation resulted in their pipes going dry, or ruined the quality of their water, they would have been among the first to complain.

Friday, November 4, 2016

West Penn Supervisors decree that recording can't take place at public meetings - but this is allowed under the Sunshine Act

It is reported that citizens of West Penn Township have been told that they can't record public meetings, and/or that they would have have to prior written permission to make such recordings.  Recording of meetings is specifically allowed under the Pennsylvania Sunshine Act:
§ 711.  Use of equipment during meetings.
        (a)  Recording devices.--Except as provided in subsection
     (b), a person attending a meeting of an agency shall have the
     right to use recording devices to record all the proceedings.
     Nothing in this section shall prohibit the agency from adopting
     and enforcing reasonable rules for their use under section 710
     (relating to rules and regulations for conduct of meetings).
        (b)  Rules of the Senate and House of Representatives.--The
     Senate and House of Representatives may adopt rules governing
     the recording or broadcast of their sessions and meetings and
     hearings of committees.
Sec 711 of PA Sunshine Act

If a tv station appears at a meeting to videotape, do they need "permission"?  Nope.  This is more bs, which appears to be in abundance in West Penn Township.  Section 710, referred to above, merely provides that activities at a meeting shall not interfere with the meeting.  As long as the recording does not interfere, it is allowed.  Requiring "written permission" is a crock of sh!t.  The back-asswards leadership of this community needs a serious wake-up call.  This isn't the Wild West.

If it looks like a crock and smells like a crock, it probably is a crock

West Penn residents should get everything associated with this water extraction debacle recorded, so they can protect their rights.

West Penn supervisors have a quandry - either protect their citizens and roads, or cater to a single business owner

In West Penn Township, the patience of affected residents has run thin with long term water extraction at a site near the East Brunswick border at Kepners Road.  The recent expansion by the owner of this operation to a new site only 2 miles away, at #1 Fort Franklin Road, has pushed some residents over the edge.

Tanker trucks associated with the #1 Fort Franklin Road operation have been reported to:
  1. Have destroyed the guardrail at the intersection of Route 309 and Blue Mountain Dr
  2. Pulled completely over the double yellow line and road shoulder of Blue Mountain Dr, when turning from Blue Mountain Drive onto Route 309 South
  3. Pulled over into and blocked both oncoming lanes of Route 309 North, when turning from Blue Mountain Dr onto Route 309 South.
  4. Be of the 50-ton configuration as well as the smaller 40-ton.
Let's take a look at the box that West Penn Supervisors are in, considering the ongoing battle of wits that has taken place in the past few years.

November 2015 Road Structure Engineering Study Findings
Let's review the results of the Road Structure Engineering Study that West Penn supervisors commissioned and was completed in November of 2015.  Only four roads were studied - Retreat Road, Dorset Road, Kepners Road and Blue Mountain Drive.

  1. Apparently, this study was done specifically to address concerns of Jay Land's water tankers finding their way from the existing site of MC Resource Development at Kepners Road and the new site of Ringgold Acquisition Group at Fort Franklin Road onto Routes 895 and 309.
  2. The study's recommendation was that all four roads should be posted with a 15-ton maximum weight limit. 
  3. While Retreat Road and Dorset Road could withstand the current (prior to the activity that commenced at #1 Fort Franklin in October 2016) traffic with a 15-ton restriction, Blue Mountain Drive and Kepners Road require an additional 1-1/2 inches of pavement to withstand the traffic at that time, with a 15-ton restriction.  No upgrades have been made to these roads since the study.
  4. Even with a 15-ton restriction and 1-1/2 inches of additional pavement, Blue Mountain Drive and Kepners Road still would not have proper drainage or shoulders.

West Penn supervisors have allowed Jay Land to continue operations
at #1 Fort Franklin, in violation of his permit
Jay Land's company obtained a permit for agricultural water extraction at #1 Fort Franklin Road.  He never filed a Land Development Plan, and was issued a Notice of Violation in March 2015.  That's a year and half ago.  Despite the Chairman of the Board of Supervisors informing a resident on July 2, 2016 that a cease and desist order was being prepared, that was apparently never issued.  Or that is being violated too.  It's hard to tell - residents report that supervisors really don't tell them what is going on.  When the doo-doo hits the fan, the supervisors say they didn't know either.  Ignorance is not an attribute.  Now commercial water extraction is taking place, and at least one resident's water quality has gone from great to shit.

West Penn residents report that supervisors have told them to go elsewhere to get relief.  Talk to PADOT, talk to DEP, talk to DRBC.  Go everywhere but the people running the township.  Don't expect anything from us, but we're doing everything we can.  What the hell - take some responsibility damn it.  50-ton trucks aren't allowed to be on the roads being used without a permit from both West Penn Township and PADOT.  Did you issue one of those?  Do you even know?  What's my name, what day is it?

West Penn Supervisors are "doing all we can" - like Jerry Lundegaard @ 1:44

I can't get out of my own way
So what is the box?  West Penn Supervisors have allowed a business owner to do whatever he pleases, their own road study shows the roads can't support the traffic from either of Mr. Land's facilities even if 1-1/2 inches of pavement were to be added, the added tanker traffic beginning in October 2016 is destroying the shoulders of Blue Mountain Drive (or the guard rail - pick your poison) when turning onto Route 309, and tankers are blocking oncoming traffic onto Blue Mountain Drive, Route 309, or both.

Here's the real problem:  Mr. Land's tankers are 40 to 50 tons.  The roads used to transport water from the Kepners Road and Fort Franklin Road sites can't handle 15 ton trucks even if improvements were made.  According to the study, Mr. Land should switch to tankers that don't exceed 15 tons, or cease operations.  He should cease operations at Fort Franklin Road anyway, because he never satisfied the conditions of his permit.  West Penn supervisors spent over $10,500 of taxpayer funds on this study, but they don't seem eager to do anything with the results that negatively impact Mr. Land, but provide a plan for securing the safety and integrity of the roads for all citizens.  The plan was to implement a posting and bonding program.

Do West Penn supervisors have the balls to make a single business owner accountable, in order to protect the health, safety and welfare of their residents?  Based on history, it is unlikely.

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Jay Land water extraction operation in West Penn operating despite notice of permit violation causes neighbor's well to become unusable

About three weeks ago, a water extraction operation at #1 Fort Franklin Road in West Penn Township ramped up production despite the fact that a required Land Development Plan was never submitted and the township issued a Notice of Violation regarding same on March 2, 2015.   This operation is run by Jay Land, who also owns a similar operation a few miles away on Blue Mountain Drive.

The water tankers leaving this site are 40 to 50 tons, which far exceed the 15-ton recommended limit that resulted from a November 2015 engineering study commissioned by the township.

Neighbor's water FUBAR

 In the past week, a neighbor to #1 Fort Franklin Road had the insult of their water quality going to hell in addition to the nightmare of tractor trailer traffic at all hours of the night that they have experienced for the past three weeks.  Their water became muddy, dirty and foul smelling:

Honey, would you like to take a romantic soak tonight?

True Grit - a little iron in your diet will do you wonders

On October 18, 2016, West Penn Supervisor James Dean told this blogger that the Supervisors couldn't comment on what they were doing to insure the health, safety and welfare of West Penn residents, but to rest assured this was the highest priority of the supervisors.  I call Bull Shit.  This is the same supervisor who told a resident via voice mail on July 2, 2016 that a cease and desist order was being crafted against this operation.  Fool me once, fool me twice.  Actions speak much louder than words.

Next BOS meeting on November 7, 2016

The West Penn supervisors next regularly scheduled meeting is on Monday, November 7.  What will happen?  Will Mr. Land bathe the audience and supervisors with the usual raft of nonsensical mumbo-jumbo that is memorialized in countless BOS minutes of the past few years?  Will the supervisors tell residents that they are listening to their concerns, and then ignore them after each has spoken at the lecturn?  What about... the health, safety and welfare of the residents?  Does water quality fall under that?  The ability to pull into your road without risking a head on collision with a massive tanker that is parked totally in your lane facing you?  The road being destroyed by tankers nearly three times the weight the road can handle?

Health Safety and Welfare is the stated highest priority in West Penn Township

Sunday, October 23, 2016

50-ton trucks hauling water in West Penn Township from new Jay Land site - on roads that West Penn's own study recommended have 15 ton limit - require state and twp permits

Last week, it was reported here that a water extraction and hauling operation has sprung up in West Penn Township, much to the consternation of residents already dealing with a nearby operation operated by the same person - Jay Land.

Now, it has been observed that tankers that are believed to exceed the Federal, State and Township limits of 80,000 pounds are regularly hauling water from this site at #1 Fort Franklin Road.  Note these trucks have three axles, and are believed to be capable of a gross weight of 100,000 pounds.

Vehicles exceeding 80,000 pounds are never allowed on interstate roads, and only with a special permit are such vehicles permitted to haul water.  A permit is needed from both PADOT and West Penn Township, which would allow trucks up to 96,900 pounds to use local (Fort Franklin and Blue Mountain Drive) and state (SR 309 & SR 895) roads.

So, West Penn supervisors, are these 50-ton trucks actually permitted by you to be on your roads, or are you shirking your duties?  Have these trucks obtained the required PADOT permits needed?  As reported, a road study commissioned by West Penn Township in 2015 produced a recommendation that Blue Mountain Drive needs 1-1/2" of additional blacktop just to withstand the traffic at that time, (before the recent commencement of activity at #1 Fort Franklin Road) and that the road be posted for a 15-ton limit.  The road has not been improved or posted.

Is it possible that West Penn supervisors would grant the permit needed for these overweight trucks, given that a Land Development Plan was never submitted by Mr. Land - a violation notice for which he was sent in March of 2015?  Does Mr. Land say "jump," and West Penn supervisors ask "how high?"  Or is it possible that Mr. Land is just doing what he pleases?  Both?

Below is the 2015 road structure study, which cost West Penn taxpayers $10,500 and produced useful results - which have been summarily ignored by the supervisory body.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Jay Land/Ringgold Acquisition Group II LLC delivering water from site in West Penn Township to Niagara Bottling without required permits

On the border of West Penn Township with East Brunswick Township, there is a long history of issues with a water extraction operation on Blue Mountain Drive, operated by MC Resource Development which is owned by Jay Land.  Mr. Land's family has been in the water business in Pennsylvania for decades and is not new to controversy - a story from 1995 shows that Berks County residents were up in arms about Land-owned Wissahickon Springs' plans to tap the Oley Valley to the tune of 144,000 gallons a day, and truck it away by tanker.

Now, a company named Ringgold Acquisition Group II LLC (RAG II) and also owned by Land, has commenced commercial water extraction only two miles down Blue Mountain Drive at its intersection with Fort Franklin Road.  Like his other operations, Land has attracted the ire of neighbors who are fed up with heavy truck traffic, noise, and the threat that their water supplies will be affected.  Since approximately October 7, 2016, water tankers estimated to hold 6500 gallons each and weigh 40 tons have been observed to be leaving the Fort Franklin Road site at the rate of about 40 tankers a week, or 37,100 gallons a day.  They turn right onto Blue Mountain Drive, and then make a sharp right onto Route 309 South (red circle above).  Citizens and authorities have followed the tankers to Niagara Bottling Inc in Fogelsville, PA

Tanker arrives at Niagara Bottling in October 2016, followed from #1 Fort Franklin Road

There are some key differences in the new operation at Fort Franklin Road, however.  Let's look at them one at a time:

1. RAG has not obtained required permits from the DEP or Delaware River Basin Commission to operate a commercial water extraction operation.  It is believed that they haven't even applied for these permits.  A water bottler can't accept water from a non-DEP permitted supply.  Mr. Land has stated at a BOS meeting that he would not sell water to a bottler until such time that he obtained these permits.
Jay Land states at Dec 2015 BOS meeting he will not truck water to bottler without permits

2. RAG obtained a West Penn Use permit for water harvesting in January of 2015, and Mr. Land stated at multiple West Penn BOS meetings that he is hauling water off the property for agricultural use.  RAG is violating its West Penn permit, because by delivering water to a bottling company it is not using the water for the purpose stated, and is not conforming to all state and federal regulations.
Jay Land states at Dec 2015 BOS meeting he is hauling water for ag use

3. RAG is operating in a patently and conspicuously dangerous manner on Blue Mountain Drive.  Tankers have been observed to cross completely over the double yellow line of Blue Mountain Drive, in preparation for turning onto Route 309 South.  This creates a very real possibility of collisions with vehicles turning onto Blue Mountain Drive from either Route 309 South or North.  Furthermore, drivers who abruptly stop on Route 309 either northbound or southbound because such trucks are blocking the westbound travel lane of Blue Mountain Drive are at risk of being rear-ended by high speed travelers on Route 309.  Lastly, northbound vehicles on Route 309 who begin a turn into Blue Mountain Drive and have to stop in the southbound lanes because they find the Blue Mountain travel lane is blocked are at risk of an oblique head-on with vehicles travelling south at high speeds.

Water tanker from #1 Fort Franklin stopped, blocking entrance from Route 309 
to Blue Mountain Drive in Oct 2016

4. RAG is operating in a patently and conspicuously dangerous manner on Route 309.  Tanker tractors have been observed to cross completely over the double line and block both northbound travel lanes when turning onto Route 309 South.  This creates a head-on accident risk in both northbound lanes with vehicles travelling at high speeds.
Tanker pulling across double line of 309 and across both northbound lanes
Note guard rail mangled by tanker on October 8, 2016

Car and tractor trailer travelling northbound PA 309 have close call with water tanker

5. RAG trucks at 80,000 pounds are more than twice the weight limit of 15 tons recommended be posted on Blue Mountain Drive in a November 2015 Road Structure Engineering Study, which cost West Penn Township taxpayers $10,500.  This study found that Blue Mountain Drive requires another 1-1/2" of pavement in order to withstand the 15-ton recommended limit.  This study also found that Blue Mountain Drive is not wide enough for a long truck to negotiate curves without encroaching on the opposite travel lane.
$10,500 Road Structure Study's recommendations to post weight limits and bond
have been ignored.

6. RAG tankers are travelling onto the dirt shoulder of Blue Mountain Drive, which is not only illegal and extremely unsafe (see #3 above), but will destroy the pavement at the transition.  Mr. Land's company MC Resource Development "generously" donated $6000 towards the road fund as reported here.  Whoa daddy, that will fill a couple of potholes until your tankers cause the patches to fall out.
Tire tracks this past week reveal extremely dangerous and illegal traffic pattern detailed
in #3 above.  Note cracked pavement - it won't be there long at this rate

7. A tanker believed to be travelling from RAG destroyed the guardrail at the intersection of Blue Mountain Drive and Route 309 on October 8, 2016.  A resident observed a tanker stopped at the scene, but it left before police arrived on the scene.
Guard rail damage which occurred on October 8, 2016 - a witness alleges a water tanker
caused the damage.

8. RAG never submitted a Land Development Plan in conjunction with its Use permit, despite multiple certified letters from West Penn Zoning Officer William Anders.  One Notice of Violation (addressed to the landowner) is dated March 18, 2015.

9. On July 2, 2016, West Penn BOS Chairman James Dean informed a resident that the Zoning Officer was drafting a Cease and Desist Order against RAG.  This order was never issued.  Why not?

Official Comment by West Penn Chairman James Dean - no comment
On October 18, James Dean was asked to comment on the operation at #1 Fort Franklin Road, in light of the recent increase in activity and associated issues on the roads, destruction of public property apparently by a tanker associated with operation, the compromise of safety of the residents, and the fact that Mr. James Dean himself had told a resident on July 2, 2016 that the West Penn Zoning Officer was drafting a Cease and Desist Order.

His response was that the health safety and welfare of West Penn residents was the Board's primary concern, but counsel had recommended that the Board not comment on what steps the Board is taking to respond to the significant increase in activity at the site.

What is the West Penn Board of Supervisors waiting for?

West Penn Supervisors are on notice an unsafe condition exists since 2015

At the November 2, 2015 West Penn BOS meeting, resident Judy Russo reported that she was very concerned because she witnessed a very slow tanker cross totally across the oncoming lanes of travel of Route 309 (as in #4 above).  Here we are a year later, a Cease and Desist Order was supposedly being drafted in July of this year, yet it hasn't been issued.  If a serious accident involving a water tanker occurs (one with no injuries apparently already has), it will be on the West Penn BOS to explain, and possibly be held responsible.  This says nothing of the real threat to the wells of residents in the area - to have a non-permitted operation sucking large amounts of water out of the ground, there is no telling what the consequences could or will be.

A Cease and Desist Order must be issued immediately
Mr. Dean and his fellow supervisors would be well advised to get off their asses and see that the West Penn Zoning Officer issue a Cease and Desist Order immediately.  Not take a vote in November, requesting the Zoning Officer do his job.  Call him today and tell him the police chief tracked a tanker from Fort Franklin Road to Fogelsville.  Remind him that he issued a Violation of the permit in March 2015.  Ask where the devil is the Cease and Desist Order (even though the supervisors are very likely aware why it was not issued)?  This isn't rocket science or brain surgery.  "We are most concerned about the health safety and welfare of our residents" is the right thing to say, because that is what the Municipalities Planning Code and Second Class Township Code dictate the Supervisors' duty is.  Words are cheap, and we have a problem, Houston.  Ringgold Acquisition Group II LLC has violated the terms of its permit in more than one way, has thumbed its nose time and again at West Penn residents, and is operating in a manner that puts motorists, citizens and township property at great risk.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Well goes dry at property of 2015 Eldred Board of Supervisor candidate - US Gov't groundwater monitoring device appears nearby

This past week, a new well was drilled reportedly out of necessity on Wood View Road in Kunkletown, near the site of the planned Nestle Water extraction.

Ironically, the site of this replacement well is the home of none other than Kevin Silliman, candidate for Eldred Township supervisor in 2015, at the height of the furor over Nestle Waters/Deer Park's plan to extract 200,000 gallons of water a day from the aquifer underlying the heart of Kunkletown.  Mr. Silliman was defeated by Joann Bush in the general election.

A (replacement) well grows in Kunkletown

An Eldred resident was interviewed, and related 3 conversations he had with Mr. Silliman during the run-up to the election.  This resident wanted to know where Mr. Silliman stood on the issues.

Q: Was Mr. Silliman either pro-Nestle, or anti-Nestle?
A: He kept saying that he had to appear neutral, since he was running for supervisor.
Q: Did he appear to have a bias, an inclination towards one side or the other"
A: Not with me, but the public widely believed him to be pro-Nestle.
Q: Did you ask specifically what he thought of the proposal?
A: Yes, and he said that he didn't know enough about the issue to offer an opinion one way or the other.  I felt that his apparent lack of interest and failure to educate himself about the most volatile issue in town was an indication that he didn't care, or was in favor of it.

Mr. Silliman probably cares now.  Reportedly $6000 had been spent prior to the well being completed.

edit 10/19 - Mr. Silliman has posted some comments on this blog, making some interesting statements.

  1. He suggested that as a journalist, I may want to write differently.  I'm not a journalist, I am a bottom feeding blogger.  World of difference.
  2. He suggested I traumatized his family, wagged around "private property" and the PA State Police.  What happened is a car pulled up behind me on Wood View as I was preparing to take my first picture, and I moved to the shoulder of the road, with my back to that car.  The car pulled into the driveway and behind shrubs as I was taking a picture from where I stood, and its horn blew several times.  A woman yelled out of the car towards the house something, maybe someone's name, and then started yelling "EXCUSE ME!" "EXCUSE ME!" while the she was still behind the shrubs.  The woman then appeared at the end of the driveway continuing to yell "EXCUSE ME!", just as I had taken a picture 15' down the road towards my car.  As I got in, she approached me, gestured off towards her house, and said "I just saw you on my property!", to which I replied truthfully :"I was not on your property, I was on the road."  I added that it is legal to take pictures from public property, but not people, and she gestured as if to say "well, my property IS private."  The law is that pictures may be taken of private property from public property, as long as it isn't of something trademarked, like an architecturally unique structure.  Like my home, I doubt that the home in question is trademarked.  You also can't take pictures of some government buildings.  Think Google Maps - how can they publish pictures of your house?  It's legal, that's how.
  3. I didn't traumatize this family - the woman escalated the situation as I calmly explained it was legal for me to take the pictures I did from the road.  She was yelling out my license plate as I drove away.  Started yelling as soon as she hit her driveway with the car, and didn't stop until I was down the street.  I remained calm and on public property at all times.  If Mr. Silliman is thinking of pressing charges, he better find a very creative camera that miraculously moves me onto his property, or change the law.  The only person I interacted with was the woman, who didn't appear to want to accept my explanation.  I can't control that, and shouldn't have caused trauma to anyone through my words or actions.  As a bottom feeding blogger, I won't be intimidated by threats to get the State Police involved.  I can't imagine them pursuing the matter at all, but if they did I would be pleased to speak with them.
  4. I didn't publish the two pictures I took.  They prove I was where I say I was, however.
  5. I will continue to delete Mr. Silliman's posts, since they allege I traumatized his family and suggest I may have trespassed, as well as they identify the ages and sexes of his children.  If he wishes to create his own blog, that is his right.

US Government is monitoring groundwater only steps away

Only a few houses away on Wood View Road, there is a monitoring device.  When the phone number on the box was called, it was explained that the device monitors groundwater, but why the box was installed and who requested it could not be released.

Big brother is watching - but exactly what and why?

Water levels down in area creeks

Nestle's engineer testified under oath that he had done "an analysis" that showed the required 90,000 gal/hr rate could be supplied by the dry hydrant at the Chestnut Ridge Lane bridge.  His analysis will never be seen, but was likely flawed.  Here are some pictures taken October 15.  How might they differ if Nestle was sucking the aquifer dry?
Buckwha Creek

Princess Run at intersection of Fiddletown Rd and Kleintop Lane