Property Owners Concerned with Proposed Quarry Near White Lake
A property owner on White Lake is very concerned with what he's learning is a proposed pink granite quarry to be developed adjacent to his property.
Devan Cornish lives in the Rochester area most of the year, but calls White Lake a Summer getaway. He and other property owners were recently sent a letter notifying them of a permit application filed with the Adirondack Park Agency to build a quarry across from the State Route 28 side of White Lake.
Cornish posted to the Forestport NY Community (friends) Facebook group his concerns over the issue and talked about the fact that his camp sits on a ridge of pink granite, the material they want to quarry for. Shirley Cornish, a relative, was curious why they would allow this to happen or why they would want it to happen, based on the pristine condition of the spring fed lake. Cornish called White Lake "the cleanest lake in the park." Shirley Cornish wanted answers so she reached out to Sarah Staab, according to Devan Cornish. Staab is with the Adirondack Park Agency and he inquired about the proposed project.
Cornish says Staab told his mother, "the White Lake area is classified moderate intensity and rural use, and in these areas, APA wants development.” Again, this is according to Cornish. He was surprised that the APA would develop a quarry on one of the busiest travel routes up north and possibly put camp owners and visitors at risk. Cornish asks, Isn't the the purpose of the APA to protect the beauty of the Adirondacks?
Shirley Cornish continued to inquire about the process leading up to the development of the quarry. Cornish says she asked about public hearings on the project and he claims Staab said there would not be any public hearings. Cornish says she also asked if there would be blasting in the formation of the quarry. She says, Staab denied there would be any blasting, but a FOIL request led to Cornish acquiring the permit application for the quarry and it indeed included blasting. Cornish argues that with blasting, comes dust which could be a health hazard for property owners and visitors. Also, Cornish believes the project will bring large trucks to the State Route 28 corridor, which will be an added nightmare to an already busy two-lane state highway. He believes that this project, which is almost through the planning purposes was done completely in the dark.
Members of the APA reached out to WIBX to provide a statement regarding Cornish's claims and statements. Public Information Officer Keith McKeever says, "Agency staff did not speak with Devan Cornish. They spoke with Shirley Cornish. All statements attributed to staff are inaccurate." He also provided a statement that reads,
The project application is currently incomplete. Staff are working with the applicant to obtain all information required for a complete application. Once the application is determined complete, the Agency will initiate its review process. This will include a coordinated review with the Department of Environmental Conservation. The Agency will provide public notice when the project is deemed complete and under review. Notice will include detailed information regarding how members of the public can formally comment. The Agency has 60 days from the date the project application is deemed complete to determine if a public hearing is warranted. If the Agency determines there is a need for a public hearing all details regarding public participation will be provided.
Cornish's Facebook post includes a call to action for people to contact various officials and tell them their thoughts on the project.
If you feel opposition to this quarry project going forward, please contact the following agencies:
NYS APA, Sarah Staab- Sarah.Staab@apa.ny.gov
NYS DEC, Randall Young- Randall.Young@dec.ny.gov
NYS DOT, Linda Lubey- Linda.Lubey@dot.ny.gov
NYS Office of Parks and Recreation, Erik Kulleseid- Notes@parks.ny.gov
Along with all Town Officials of the Town of Forestport, Oneida County, NY
The APA project number is 2021-0075
Cornish is urging people to try and preserve and protect the cleanest lake in the Adirondacks.
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