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Activists Wearing Out Welcome?

FRANKLIN TOWNSHIP – Activists from New York showed up in Susquehanna County today to protest the removal of a water buffalo from a home.  A natural gas company had been providing water to a family who claimed fracking contaminated their water, but many people living in the Montrose area say they want no part of these protests.

The group protesting just north of Montrose is called Citizen Action of New York from Binghamton.  Many long time Franklin Township residents say they want no part of the out-of-state activists and the noise they’re creating in their community.

This was the scene gas company representatives were met with in Franklin Forks – anti-fracking activitst all from out of state – stopping them from removing a water buffalo they voluntarily put on this property in the spring of 2012.

“Our goal today was to remove our equipment, have them install their equipment and then we would fill their tank up with fresh portable water so they would start out with a fresh tank,” said WPX Energy Community Relations Manager Susan Oliver.

These tanks were put on Tammy Hadlick’s property and two others while the Department of Environmental Protection investigated claims that methane gas caused by fracking contaminated the water.

WPX Energy says the removal was agreed upon by lawyers, but these activists and the Hadlicks say that’s not the case.

“They didn`t have any documents to back that up that`s the issue, they have no documents saying that they own this buffalo,” said Citizen Action of New York Environmental Organizer Issac SIlberman-Gorn.

“They don`t care if we have water, I need my water, they don`t need to remove it.  In the beginning they wanted to be nice neighbors, I guess they don`t want to be nice no more,” said homeowner Tammy Hadlick.

Folks who live near the Hadlick`s home here in Franklin Forks say they`re more frustrated with activists showing up from out of town than they are with this water buffalo situation itself.

“We are really fed up with that,” said Kelly Harding of Franklin Township.

Harding grew up in this area and stood with other neighbors who say these protests are a nuisance.

“They`re too aggressive, it`s been a very disturbing thing to our community,” said Harding.

Now these residents say they’re working to fight back, and take back their home town.

“Show a voice to the township residents, the people that actually live here.  Not people that come in from far away states to stir up things and make problems for the gas company,” said Dale Webster of Franklin Township.

WPX Energy says they will be in contact with the Hadlick’s attorney within the next week since they were unable to take the water buffalo as planned today.

As for Citizen Action of New York, the group says they’ll be back again if they think it’s necessary.

12 comments

  • OZ

    First of all Vera, the water equipment is not “theirs” it is WPX’s. They put the equipment in place while DEP did EXTENSIVE tests on their water. DEP determined their water is not contaminated so therefor WPX can have THEIR equipment back. I have lived in the Franklin Forks area my whole life and have never been able to drink water at my parents house, my house, or my grandparents dairy farm. There is NATURAL methane in the water. Always has been. Get over yourself and go back to Long Island.

    • veraduerga

      I and others from Pa. were there; you can see me with the group ; I am from the county of Susquehanna ; Amanda , the reporter, with WNEP, wouldn’t even take any statement from me or hear me; she was very focused on the industry and industry supporters; I also helped organize this event; it was a Pa./NY citizen-organized event; not just NY; so, the info from Amanda-reporter is not accurate.

      • veraduerga

        Amanda Kelley, reporter, interviewed a handful of local township residents and that becomes “most” don’t want this; that is a big stretch. we were helping the residents keep their water equipment and get household water.
        This is not activists from out of town; they are local folks who are concerned about folks who need water after gas drilling;
        we are not from far away; from miles away in Pa. and just over the border in NY. a few came from farther. why is that the issue; the DEP water tests show super high methane in several homes’ water and high metals over the allowable limits; this water is not safe and needs to be addressed. The folks involved can not be just left on their own; Our DEP needs to protect them and get help and safe, clean water to them.

  • John Trallo

    Most of the protesters WERE PA RESIDENTS that I know personally. This amplifies reasons why people can not negotiate with this industry, and should not expect the local PA “news” who are now dependent of ad dollars from the gas industry to accurately report the chain of events that let to this demonstration. This is an industry that engages in predatory practices, gag-orders in lieu of settlements, industry funded ‘science’, and has spent millions in PA buying political cover and regulatory favor. WNEP should be ashamed of themselves. It’s time for the people of PA to change the channel and start writing letters to WNEP other non-gas industry related sponsors and threaten to boycott their products and services until they pressure WNEP to stop acting as apologists for the gas industry.

    • CentralPA

      You sure about that John Trallo? William Huston (Binghamton, NY) listed the groups there as Citizen Action of New York from Binghamton, Vestal Residents for Safe Energy (VeRSE), New York Residents Against Drilling (NYRAD), NY Friends of Clean Air and Water, NYers Against Fracking, Catskill Mountainkeeper, the Coalition to Protect New York, and Frack Busters (also NY). Not including journalists, who was there from Pennsylvania besides the local residents?

  • veraduerga

    Yes, I and other Pa. residents were there; this article is very slanted for the Industry removal of the water buffalo/1,000 gallon container that supplies household water for a family of 8, and the equipment to run this into the house; The DEP has not deemed their water well safe to drink or use. I and others were there to support this familiy and the other families with contaminated water which turned after gas drilling started in the area in 2011. WPX Energy can be good neighbors and just leave the equipment which these families can use and been using for one year and half. We were there to stop the removal per the family’s request. I asked WPX reps, Susan Oliver and Scott Miller, where is your paperwork. Do you have a court order ? none was shown. The local residents like Harding and Webster who came, came to support the Gas Industry and not to help their own neighbors in their township. Why would they do that? I asked them to help and meet these folks struggling with contaminated water for a year and a half and they haven’t. Why is this article slanted in favor of the industry. The reporter mainly focused on the industry and industry supporters. The DEP has abandoned these families and left them on their own. DEP has said in their Determination letter, they do not know what is causing this contamination, even though, they have two gas sites, within a mile, that have bad casing and spill violations, which are the Hollenbeck and Depue sites.

  • CentralPA

    Looks like you framed yourself Bill Huston

    Citizen Action of New York from Binghamton
    Vestal Residents for Safe Energy (VeRSE)
    New York Residents Against Drilling (NYRAD)
    NY Friends of Clean Air and Water
    NYers Against Fracking
    Catskill Mountainkeeper
    the Coalition to Protect New York
    and Frack Busters (also NY)

  • William Huston

    This report makes several facutal errors, and the entire framing is very bizarre.

    1) “…anti-fracking activists, all from out of state…” FALSE.

    The term “anti-fracking activist” is a slur and pejorative. We were not there as “activists”. We were there to OFFER PROTECTION for a family with a water crisis.

    Yes, the group was largely from NY, however there were several people there from Pennsylvania, including Vera Scroggins, Tammy Manning (Impacted family from Franklin Forks) and one man from Tioga County PA.

    2) The characterized what we were doing was a “protest”. It was not a protest. It was PROTECTION.

    3) “The group protesting just north of Montrose is called Citizen Action of New York from Binghamton” FALSE.

    Yes, we are very grateful to Isaac from Citizen Action for helping to organize this rapid response, however there were people from many groups present, including Vestal Residents for Safe Energy (VeRSE), New York Residents Against Drilling (NYRAD), NY Friends of Clean Air and Water, NYers Against Fracking, Catskill Mountainkeeper, PA Citizens for Clean Water, the Coalition to Protect New York, and Frack Busters.

    4) In fact, it was the local group who claimed to be “fed up”
    who were the actual protesters to what we were doing!

    The whole framing of the report failed to find anything bizarre about a group of local people who came to support the gas company REMOVING A FAMILY OF EIGHT’s WATER SUPPLY!!!

    What kind of people would SUPPORT the removal of a family of eight’s water supply!? BIZARRE!

    http://nyfriendsofcleanairandwater.blogspot.com/2013/11/water-crisis-averted-in-franklin-forks.html

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