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Town board extends hydrofracking moratorium

Another 90 days added to give board more time to consider legal language

— Sal Demillio, a 25-year-old newcomer to Skaneateles from New Jersey said that when he heard about the hydrofracking issue “it made me sick. The fact that this is even an option is reprehensible.”

Some residents, such as Sheryl Ketchum and Sydney Howard, said if hydrofracking is allowed in Skaneateles they will immediately move out of the area.

No one in the audience spoke out in favor of ending the moratorium or of allowing hydrofracking generally.

Town Councilor Nancy Murray thanked all the attendees after the hearing closed, saying, “All this information is very valid and true, and we must sit down and think about this carefully. Not everyone out there agrees with everyone here tonight.”

The board then voted unanimously to extend the moratorium for 90 days, which was followed by loud applause from the audience.

“We’ll get this done before the moratorium expires,” Roney told the crowd.

Also at the town board meeting:

—The board awarded town highway department employee Stephen Bryant a plaque in recognition of his 30 years working for the town.

—Owasco Town Supervisor John Klink asked the board to consider joining the Owasco Lake Watershed Management Council in an advisory capacity as an ex-officio member. The OLWMC is an umbrella organization dedicated to maintain and improve the quality of Owasco Lake, Klink said. It is currently comprised of the Cayuga County legislature, the city of Auburn, and the towns of Owasco, Fleming and Cipio, with the towns of Venice and Niles expected to join soon. As a member, the Skaneateles Towb Board would be responsible for sending a representative to each meeting to share information with the group and then relay information back to the town board.

“The more municipalities that join, the more success we will have,” Klink said.

He said the action would cost the town of Skaneateles no money or fees, it would simply be an advisory role.

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