You are here

Coalition Sign-on Letter Requesting Enforcement of Dryden's 5/24/17 Letter to Dominion Transmission Inc and the Town's Public Utility Approval Moratorium

Honorable Jason Leifer
Dryden Town Supervisor
93 East Main Street
Dryden NY 13053

Re: Immediate Enforcement of Town of Dryden's 5/25/17 Letter to Dominion Transmission Inc and the Town's Public Utility Approval Moratorium


We, the undersigned, write to request that the Town of Dryden immediately revoke the Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan and the Building Permit that it approved for the proposed expansion of the Dominion New Market Pipeline Borger Compressor Station located at 219 Ellis Hollow Creek Road.

The Town publicly announced on May 25, 2017 that it would revoke these local approvals and require a Special Use Permit for the proposed project, but reportedly failed to take those actions according to Town authorities.

See: Dryden Town Supervisor 5/24/17 Letter to Dominion Transmission Inc. Regarding Revocation of Local Approvals for New Market Pipeline

We request that the Town fulfill our requests given the letter and spirit of a Public Utility Approval Moratorium that remains in-force until at least July 20, 2017. We also request that no moratorium waiver be granted to Dominion and no Special Use Permit be issued for the proposed Borger expansion because the facility is toxic-contaminated, cannot fulfill Town Zoning Law requirements and is utterly incompatible with Dryden's comprehensive land use plan for that area.

See: Local Law–Moratorium–Public utilities - Town of Dryden

Our request is based on the following well-documented rationalizations:

1. Proposed Borger Expansion Requires Special Use Permit Proceeding

Dryden wrote Dominion Transmission Inc. regarding the Borger facility expansion that: "Section 501 of the Town's Zoning Law states that public utility facilities require a special use permit in the Conservation zone, where this facility is located. The Zoning Law does not state when facility modifications will require special use permit amendments. Because Dominion's 1984 special use permit was specifically for compressor building and control building extensions, it does not cover any modifications made to the site after that date.

Absent criteria in the Zoning Law that spell out when special use permit amendments are needed/not needed, any proposed changes to the site require a special use permit amendment. The special use permit process is in place to assure that the use will not adversely affect the neighborhood. Because the Town Board looks only at the application before it, it cannot and does not make a pre-determination that any facility, no matter how large it gets or how many changes are made to it, will never adversely affect the neighborhood. Many other municipalities require amended special use permit applications for modified projects.

The Town did not require Dominion to obtain amended special use permits for post-1984 Borger Station modifications. However, there is a principle that there is no estoppel against the government, which means that even if a municipality misapplied its zoning law in the past, it is not estopped from applying it correctly in the future."

2. Dryden Public Utility Approval Moratorium Must be Strictly Enforced

It is shocking that the Town of Dryden failed to enforce its own Public Utility Approval Moratorium with regard to the proposed Borger expansion even though it is specifically prohibited according to the Town's own letter to Dominion:

"However, as Dominion is a public utility, special use permit and site plan applications for the project are covered by the Town's public utility moratorium because more than one acre would be disturbed. Dominion could apply to the Town Board for a waiver or wait for the moratorium to expire, which is currently set for July 20, 2017."

Dryden's Public Utility Approval Moratorium bars the Borger expansion because it prohibits:

"Acceptance, consideration, preliminary approval or final approval by the Town of Dryden Town Board of any site plan or special use permit for new or modified public utility infrastructure (including, without limitation, pipelines, pipes, mains, and conduits), that involves an area of land disturbance associated with the public utility infrastructure of one or more acres."

In addition, the Public Utility Approval Moratorium prohibits: "The issuance of building permits by a Town of Dryden Code Enforcement Officer in connection with any activity prohibited hereunder."

We further request that no public utility moratorium waiver be granted for the Borger compressor station expansion project and that the public utility moratorium be extended until all of the toxic pollution concerns documented at the proposed Borger Compressor Station are comprehensively remediated in strict compliance with all applicable state standards.

This request is supported by the goal of the moratorium: "The Town Board will be considering the following Town of Dryden Comprehensive Plan goals, among others, to determine whether Zoning Law amendments are needed to help assure that public utility projects are consistent with such goals: protect and advance the quality of life of residents; protect the unique natural assets of the Town;"

We also request that no approvals can be granted at this time for the Borger expansion project because:

"The Town Board is concerned that any new legislation would be subverted if public utility infrastructure projects that disturb a significant amount of land... were to be entertained and possibly approved before the Town Board considers legislation to address these issues."

3. Proposed Borger Expansion Conflicts With Town Sustainability Goals

Finally, the Town of Dryden has announced that it is taking action to "Create an action plan to implement practices, activities, and policies that will support the achievement of sustainability goals" in order to "integrate sustainability principles into Town policy and decision-making activities to guide the Town of Dryden towards the measurement and achievement of a sustainable future..."


Given that lofty goal, it makes no sense whatsoever for the Town of Dryden to grant any local approvals for a massive fracked gas pipeline expansion project that would pose on-going toxic contamination threats to the rural, residential neighborhood around the Borger Compressor Station while perpetuating Dryden and New York State's addiction to fossil fuels for decades to come.

We believe that those actions would be totally contrary to the Town's avowed sustainability goals and must not be permitted.

Thank you for your consideration. Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions about our respectful request.

Yours very truly,

Total Signatory Count: 410

Nari Mistry
Ellis Hollow RD
Ithaca, NY
Elaine Livingston
1403 Glenwood Rd
Vestal, NY
James W Prescott, Ph.D.
1140-23 Savannah Rd
Lewes, DE
Wendell F Perks Jr
6035 Turnpike Road
Trumansburg, NY
Donna Mummery
67 Village Trail
Honeoye Falls, New York
Barbara F. Usher
144 Besemer Hill Rd
Ithaca, NY
Douglas Kinney
63 River Street
Oneonta, New York
Laura Nowack
28 South Main Street
Earlville, NY
Amy Harlib
212 W 22nd St Apt 2N
New York, NY
Paul Sawyer
435 N Aurora
Ithaca, NY
Rebecca Casstevens
Sole Proprietor
BeanCounters Unlimited
22 Winding Way
Binghamton, New York
donna mundt
retired FNP
po box 187
newark valley, NY
Jeannine Laverty
115 Lawrence St
Saratoga Springs, NY
Rachel Evans
33 maple
Beacon, Ny
Deborah Jones
Board Member
Community Science Institute
3166 Perry City Rd.
Trumansburg, New York
William Mathews
State University of New York
8 Wintergreen Way, .
Rochester, NY
Andrew Cranston jr
265 south rd
Holmes, N>Y>
David Mitchell
402 Esty Street
Ithaca, NY
obie hunt
1150 Grand Concourse
Bronx, New York
Carolyn Clark Pierson
Professional Tutor
SUNY Delhi
5262 County Highway 14
Treadwell, New York
David Sibley
2 Dove Drive
Ithaca, NY
Pat Halpen
3071 Shay Road
Naples, NY
Tara Sumner
Vice President
Advocates for Springfield, NY
PO Box 302
Springfield Center, New York
Emily Ouckama
6649 Waterburg Rd
Trumansburg, NY
Jacqueline Lopez
8 Genung Rd, ---
Ithaca, New York
Victoria Furio
Climate Justice
37 Highland Ave
Yonkers, NY
Shirley Rice
3457 South Hill Road
Burdett, New York
Tonia Simon
1337 Afton Lake Road
Afton, NY
hilda wilcox
6 Pine Blvd
Cooperstown, New York
Jean Hricik
445 Smith-Kingsman Rd.
McDonough, ny
Bonnie Logan
3199 Grenell Rd.
Middle Grove, NY
Dianne Sefcik
194 Clickman Rd
Westerlo, NY
shyama orum
305 west 28 street #16E
new york, ny
Mike Millow
1316 Caton Rd
Corning, NY
Suzanne McMannis
Earthwalk Farm
246 Bone Plain Rd.
Freeville, NY
Lynn McMannis
Earthwalk Farm
246 Bone Plain Rd
Freeville, NY
patricia rodriguez
to: town board in Dryden
we are seneca lake; ithaca college
559 Brooktondale Rd
Brooktondale, NY
Donald Mintz
29 Whig Street
Trumansburg, NY
Julien V. Koschmann
Cornell University
705 Ringwood Road
Ithaca, NY
Stacy Binkerd
392 Locke Rd.
Groton, NY
Alice Bartholomew
415 Wall Street
Elmira, NY
Jonathan Titus
15 Maple Ave.
Fredonia, NY
Daniel Pagano
POB 313 Unadilla, NY 13849
unadilla, ny
tracy basile
74 Revolutionary Road
Ossining, NY
Jeannette Rice
31 Rice Road
Rensselaerville, NY
Shannon Luzum
3105 Clute Rd
Cortland, NY
sarah sweeny
28 stonybrook rd
Tivoli, NY 12583
Elsa Leviseur
122 Union Street
Hudson, NY
Kara Emmons
30 East Mayer Drive
Suffern, New York
Stacy Snyder
154 Westhaven Road
Ithaca , New York