Wednesday, February 11, 2009

LETTER: $13 million rail yard relocation now $46 million

NewsLanc received information from a TRRAAC spokes person which we have edited and posted below:

"Monday night a bunch of Manheim Township residents and members of TRRAAC spoke to the commissioners. Mike Yoder of the Intelligencer Journal was present and spoke to us afterwards, but no article has been published yet to my knowledge.

"The issues are a little complicated, but let me try and summarize briefly:

"1.EDC Finance Corporation (EDC) is the conduit applying for state grants to cleanup the dump. In an application to the Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED), EDC claims to have a $1 million 'commitment' from the Department of Environmental Protection(DEP). DEP has not responded to an Open Records request and it has been two weeks...

"2. We wrote to Manheim Township on January 26 asking them to step up and pay attention to the storm water issues associated with the excavation of the dump. That letter is posted on TRRACC's web site. There was no response from the township. That's why we showed up Monday to complain.

"The first part of the excavation is in the floodplain. East Hempfield never was notified. There was no review by Manheim Township engineers. Application submitted by Lancaster County Solid Waste Management Authority. None of it has been posted on F & M's web site.

"3. A Right to Know request to PENNDot revealed interesting documents. F & M obtained a $700,000 grant to do engineering design study. The contract required monthly progress reports. PENNDot said all they have is the application and award of the grant. They do not have the actual work product.

"That application contains a copy of the letter of intent between F & M and Norfolk Southern. Originally this was a $13 million project and the proposal was to cap the landfill. Now it is $46 million and excavate the landfill (so Lancaster County Waste Disposal can charge $3.5 million in tipping fees to relocate the waste from its old dump to Frey farm. * (Editor's note: Frey farm, not Fry farm.)

* Emphasis added