Scenic Hudson, City of Kingston Alderman Request Longer Public Comment Period in SEQR

By Rebecca Martin

Recently, it was reported that The Chazen Companies (Niagara Bottling Company’s consultant for the proposed Niagara Water Bottling project) requested an additional 30 days to submit their scoping document (originally due on December 22nd, thirty days from which Lead Agency was determined).

At last night’s Town of Ulster Town Board meeting, however a new resolution was not passed that would have indicated any changes to the Town of Ulster’s (as Lead Agency) original SEQR schedule.

KingstonCitizens.org will follow this closely by keeping up with the Town of Ulster’s Town Clerk daily to learn and confirm whether or not the Chazen Companies has or will turn in their scoping document prior to January 22nd.

In the meantime, we are pleased to share letters from both Scenic Hudson and Alderman (and Majority Leader) Matt Dunn of the Kingston Common Council who submitted letters to the Town of Ulster in support of our request of a minimum of 60 days for public comment in the SEQR scoping process.

All eyes on SEQR now, Kingston citizens – and in working to provide you with the proper time required to respond.

 

Letter from Scenic Hudson:

 

Scenic Hudson 1
Click on the image to read the letter in full.

 

From Matt Dunn, City of Kingston Ward 1 Alderman and Majority Leader:

 

Matt Dunn
Click on the image to down load the letter written by Ward 1 Alderman and Majority Leader Matt Dunn.

VIDEO: Town of Ulster Town Board Defeats Resolution of City of Kingston and Town of Woodstock as Involved Agencies. Passes Resolution Clearing ToU as Lead Agency and Positive Declaration.

2seqrmap

By Rebecca Martin

* Because we want to get this information out to the public ASAP, we are still extracting important details from the video and of documents pertaining to  SEQR in the proposed Niagara Bottling Project over the next few days.  Please check back daily on this post as we do so and thank you.

Tonight at the Town of Ulster Town Board Meeting, the Town Board under the leadership of Supervisor James Quigley passed several resolutions that included a Resolution for the City of Kingston and Town of Woodstock to become Involved Agencies (Denied Unanimously, though with some hesitation),  2) A resolution clearing Lead Agency to construct a water bottle facility. (Resolution passed unanimously.) 3) A resolution declaring a positive SEQR declaration (passed unanimously).

The public comment was incredibly rich. Take a moment and review it below.

I ask that the citizens not be discouraged and to continue to be diligent.. There is a great deal underway to protect our interests. As the Town of Woodstock Supervisor Jeremy Wilber states in his public comment “There are citizens that transcend the borders…that are going to involve themselves. We would rather be inside the tent with you spitting out than outside the tent spitting in. But we will be an involved party….I just hope that we won’t have to dwell on legalisms as neighboring towns and as people and that share a very neutral concern for the future of our water sources of the area.”

We are united and committed in seeing our region prosper and in working together to find alternative solutions in addressing Kingston’s aging infrastructure.

Special thanks to Clark Richter of Kingston News for filming this evening.

 

Initial Public Comments

1:26 – 4:41
Kevin Smith, Chairman of the Woodstock Land Conservancy

4:45 – 6:11
Dennis Doyle, Ulster County Planning Board

6:20 – 8:05
Kate Hudson, Riverkeeper

8:14 – 11:57
Rebecca Martin, Kingston, NY
READ REBECCA’S SPEECH

12:00 –  15:44
Jennifer Schwartz Berky, Kingston, NY

15:55 – 18:37
Rev. Betsy Stang, The Wittenberg Center for Alternative Resources

18:47 – 22:13
Kitty McCullough, Kingston, NY

22:19 – 25:21
Rachel Marco-Havens, KingstonCitizens.org
READ RACHEL’S SPEECH

25:30 – 28:45
Robert Barton, Town of Ulster

28:58 – 31:58
Donald Gregorius, UC Legislator

31:57 – 35:39
Jeremy Wilber, Town of Woodstock Supervisor

35:55 – 39:39
Henrietta Wise, Olivebridge, NY

 

On Niagara Bottling Company Resolutions

0:10 – 1:08
Resolution including City of Kingston and Town of Woodstock as Involved Agency
Resolution defeated unanimously (though with hesitation)

1:12 – 1:41
Resolution clearing Lead Agency to construct a water bottle facility.
Resolution passed unanimously

1:42 – 2:29
Resolution declaring a positive SEQR declaration
“I would the people in the audience to know the that the town board is dedicating itself to an open and public process…as requested.”  – Supervisor James Quigley
Resolution passed unanimously

Closing Public Comments

2:46 – 5:21
Robert Barton, Town of Ulster

5:28 – 7:31
Jeremy Wilber, Town of Woodstock Supervisor

7:37 – 10:14
Rachel Marco-Havens, KingstonCitizens.org

10:23 – 11:27
Donald Gregorius, UC Legislator

11:35 – 13:40
Jennifer Schwartz Berky, KingstonCitizens.org

13:47 – 16:34
Kevin Smith, Chairman of the Woodstock Land Conservancy

16:43 – 20:09
Rebecca Martin, KingstonCitizens.org
READ REBECCA’S SPEECH

20:24 – 21:24
Mike Berardi, Town of Ulster

 

The Wittenberg Center: “Positive Declaration in SEQR Essential For Potential Level One Archeological Sites.”

“We are writing concerning the proposed Niagra Bottling Plant SEQR review process. We are asking for a positive declaration on the following grounds. We strongly believe that both Cooper Lake and the location of the proposed Niagara plant are potential Level One archeological sites.

We are writing concerning the proposed Niagra Bottling Plant SEQR review process. We are asking for a positive declaration on the following grounds. We strongly believe that both Cooper Lake and the location of the proposed Niagara plant are potential Level One archeological sites.”
                   – Rev. Betsy Stang and Rev. Jim Davis, the Wittenberg Center for Alternative Resources

 

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Click on image to download the entire letter.

WHAT TO EXPECT: Town of Ulster Town Board Meeting Thursday, 11/20/14 at 7:00pm

By Rebecca Martin

The Town of Ulster Town Board will meet on Thursday, November 20th at 7:00pm.   Scheduled to occur that evening is the Town of Ulster Town Board to give final approval of itself as being “Lead Agency” in the proposed Niagara Bottling Company SEQR process.

The public is invited. Public comment on any matters will be made available following “Old Business” at the end of the evening. We expect that to occur between 8:00pm – 8:30pm, though it may be later.   Please see Supervisor James Quigleys’ note below.
We ask that all residents prepare a statement in advance to be no more than 3 minutes in length. Please show respect to municipalities that you are visiting.

Here are several posts to research that will help you to create your 3 minute speech so to hit key points that evening.

On a Positive Declaration in SEQR.
LINK1   LINK2  

Why the City of Kingston should be an Involved Agency.
LINK1   LINK2

Insightful letter to the DEC from Town of Woodstock Supervisor Jeremy Wilber.
LINK

Their meetings are always audio taped by the Town and we will be on hand to to film the event thanks to Clark Richters of Kingston News.

If you have any questions, please contact me at: rebecca@kingstoncitizens.org

Thank you.

 

TOWN OF ULSTER
TOWN BOARD

WHAT
Town of Ulster Town Board
1 Town Hall Road
Lake Katrine, NY

WHEN
Thursday, November 20th, 2014
7:00pm

WHERE
Town of Ulster Town Hall

AGENDA
Click on this LINK

 

As per Supervisor James Quigley regarding this month’s meeting:

“A DRAFT AGENDA will be posted Tuesday morning (we have linked it above) and is subject to change. There are no items currently listed on the Agenda related to Niagara Bottling. I am awaiting the Resolutions from Counsel prior to place the item on the Agenda. A Revised Agenda will be posted as soon as possible. There are two opportunities for the Public to speak during the meeting. In the beginning Statements may be made on Agenda Items. At the end of the meeting is Public Comment for any and all topics. Remember these are times for the Public to make statements to the Board not enter into a debate with the Town Board.  Anyone who wishes will be able to address the Board during these periods. Comments are limited to three minutes per speaker and there is no yielding time to other speakers.”

 

Corporation Council Andy Zweben: “The City of Kingston is not an “Involved” Agency

By Rebecca Martin

Perhaps the most disappointing letter that I have seen in the past four weeks since beginning this work is one initiated by the City of Kingston’s Corporation Council Andrew Zweben – a public sector lawyer dated 10/24/14 -appears to be working against our Common Council’s memorializing resolution. Why?

Read more…

ACTION: Contact Martin Brand of DEC Regarding SEQR Action and Lead Agency.

By Rebecca Martin

ACTIONContact all listed below to alert them that the ACTION in the current Environment Assessment Form (EAF) for SEQR (drafted by Niagara/The Chazen Companies) is too narrow in scope. It does not include the SALE of water from its supply sources in Woodstock to Niagara and is a critical part of the entire project that needs to be environmentally reviewed by SEQR under ONE Lead Agency (that being the DEC) before any decisions can be made or actions taken by any involved agency, including the City of Kingston Water Department.

Read more…

SEQR: Interested vs. Involved Agencies

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By Rebecca Martin

Last night the Town of Ulster Town Board expanded both their ‘Involved’ and ‘Interested’ Agency list on a “Revised Resolution on Notice of Intent to Declare Lead Agency” (see pages 38 – 44) for the Niagara Bottling Facility project.

We are disappointed that involved parties don’t also include the Town of Woodstock, City of Kingston and Town of Esopus.

Read more…