Hamlin supervisors OK waiver for Shell project

HAZEL HURST – After months of discussion on the issue, the Hamlin Township Board of Supervisors voted 3-0 Monday to approve a request from Shell for a waiver in the Stormwater Management Ordinance (SMO).Board Chairman Don Compton joined with Supervisors Guy Raught and Joni Britton to approve the waiver for a proposed pipeline and meter station linked with a Marcellus Shale natural gas well drilled by the Shell Exploration and Production Company.The vote came during a lengthy tumultuous meeting that featured frequent outbursts, name-calling and accusations between waiver critics, waiver supporters and the supervisors. Compton pounded his gavel several times to no avail to stop the bickering. At one point, Compton threatened to ask township resident Bill Belitskus to leave the meeting. Belitskus of West Wood Lane off Route 6 and Dr. Jan. Hendryx of Mead Run were among those who spoke out against the request for the waiver.Under questioning, Compton and Britton said they have read only parts of the SMO, which the county and its municipalities were required to adopt last year in accordance with a mandate from the state Department of Environmental Protection (DEP). Raught said "we don't have to read the whole ordinance" to make a decision on the waiver request. "You don't have to understand the plan," Raught said.See full article by purchasing the Feb. 14 edition of The Kane Republican.