Watkins Glen Village Board Passes Resolution Against LPG Storage Facility

WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. (18 News) – The Watkins Glen Village Board has voted in favor of a resolution that opposes Crestwood’s proposed Liquid Petroleum Gas (LPG) facility along Seneca Lake.

The Village Board took the vote on Monday night, just a little while after hundreds rallied against the facility on Route 14. The vote was three in favor of the resolution, none opposed, and two abstaining.

The main concern for the trustees who voted for the resolution: the increased truck traffic through the Village of Watkins Glen, which can already be heavy with the bottleneck of Routes 14 and 414.

Trustees said they also worry about the loss of tourists the area has spent the last decade attracting. “Is it really worth the job creation that it'd make versus what it could potentially drive away in our tourism,” said Kevin Smith, a Watkins Glen Village Trustee who voted for the resolution. “And as you can see, over the past ten years, this place has really blossomed."

Smith did say that as an engineer, he knows there is the potential for projects like the storage facility to be done safely, but that he had to listen to his constituents in their opposition of it.

The resolution had been in the works for the past few months, but the protest Monday brought it to a head.

It is important to note the facility would not be inside the Village of Watkins Glen, but is actually located in the Town of Reading.

For its part, Crestwood says the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) approved a small expansion for its natural gas storage facility, not liquid petroleum. In a statement, the company said, “The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) recently authorized a small expansion of our Seneca Lake natural gas storage facility. The FERC order authorizing the expansion requires us to file an implementation plan for the environmental and engineering conditions contained in the order. We filed our implementation plan last week, and we cannot commence construction until the FERC approves our plan.”

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