BY STACI WILSON
The Susquehanna County Planning Commission gave final approval to Williams’ Potter Compressor Station in Brooklyn Twp. last week.
Williams was granted preliminary approval to construct the building about two years ago. The sound study completed by SLR International Corporation indicated that, with its 13 engines operating, the station met the county’s noise requirements.
County Planning Director Robert Templeton told commission members Williams’ original plan had two buildings on it that were not built and not included on the revised plans. In order to construct those as intended, the Planning Commission would require the company submit a new set of plans.
Three members of the audience expressed concern about the compressor station. After some discussion regarding the level of natural gas development in the county and the county’s comprehensive plan, Victoria Switzer commented about the absence of a plan that determined how many compressor stations were acceptable in the county.
Templeton reminded those in attendance that the planning commission has no authority over the use of a building.
Planning commission member Chris Caterson backed him up. “What is in a building is not our concern,” he said, “as a body, it’s not our concern.” He explained the commission had no authority over building use. “We can’t change what we’re allowed to do,” he said.
Audience member Barbara Clifford said, “You can create pressure,” and asked the members to “do more.”
Planning Commission Chair Nancy Harvatine said, “We’re not a permitting agency.”
Audience member Bill Huston asked if the county could do a noise study on the Potter Compressor Station.
And Planning Commission member John Butler said the sound study had been done prior to coming to the commission for its final approval.
Huston also asked about the comprehensive plan and whether that could be used as a tool to deny projects not consistent with it.
Templeton said an update to the comprehensive plan was underway and it would likely be adopted by the county commissioners later this year. “The planning commission did not invite the gas companies here,” Templeton said, “individual landowners did.”
Audience members were encouraged to take their concerns to DEP and the state legislature. `
In addition to the Potter Compressor Station, the commission also granted final approval to Integrative Counseling Services commercial development in New Milford Borough.
Miller’s Auto Connection expansion in Dimock Twp., and New Milford Hardware’s land development were granted preliminary approval.