THE DEP IS TRYING TO DENY US A PUBLIC HEARING ON THE BERKS HOLLOW NATURAL GAS POWER PLANT!!!
CALL THE DEP AND DEMAND A PUBLIC HEARING!!!
Legislative Affairs Director, Tom Santanna, 717-783-8303 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Air Quality Director, Joyce E. Epps, 717-787-9702 or email@example.com
CALL ON YOUR LEGISLATORS TO HELP!!!
We found out about the public comment period for the Berks Hollow Natural Gas Power Plant shortly before it ended. Over a weekend, we spread the word and you responded. You submitted 125 comments to the DEP calling for a public hearing.
Representative Jerry Knowles heard from his constituents too and wrote a letter to the DEP informing them of that. The DEP’s Tom Santanna responded with a letter stating that the submissions lacked addresses or phone numbers and couldn’t even be identified as Berks residents. As a result, Santanna concluded that, “Taking the additional step of holding a public hearing does not seem warranted, as the level of identifiably local interest is not particularly high.”
Fortunately, we directed people to submit their comments via the Clean Air Council’s system that keeps a record of submissions for just such an occasion. Our friends there reconstructed the list of submissions (minus the actual comments) and provided me with the portion of the list that contains the contact information you entered.
I called the DEP several times and got a response from someone in the Air Quality office, but was unable to connect with him before he left for a vacation. I ended up speaking with another person in his organization. When I said I had the spreadsheet of contacts for all 125 people who submitted comments, he changed the story a bit and said that they always consider the comments even without identifying information, but that he’d look into this specific situation.
That was on Monday, 6/17. We’ve heard nothing since. Tell the DEP you want a public hearing!!