HILLSVILLE, PA. Hearing set on quarry project

The official comment period ends Tuesday.
HILLSVILLE, Pa. -- Pennsylvania officials have set the time for a public informational meeting on a proposed mine reclamation project, which would involve burying coal ash in the old Erskine Quarry.
The hearing will be at 7 p.m. Sept. 13 at the Mahoning Presbyterian Church on New Castle-Struthers Road.
Scott Horrell of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection said the meeting will give residents an opportunity to ask questions about the project, which has generated concern among quarry neighbors.
The official comment period about the proposal ends Tuesday, by which time letters must be at Horrell's office at 286 Industrial Park Road, Ebensburg, Pa. 15931-4119.
Proposal: Erskine Resources, with owners listed as Charles Pezzulo and Frank Lentine, has submitted a proposal to do a reclamation contract with the state DEP's Bureau of Abandoned Mine Reclamation for an abandoned quarry located off Erskine Quarry Road, near the Ohio border.
But Horrell said Thursday there is no guarantee that the proposal will be approved. He explained that one potential obstacle is a provision in state law that allows only for "beneficial use of coal ash" in reclamation.
Any ash to be dumped into the quarry must undergo extensive testing and be certified according to these beneficial use criteria, which seek to ensure that neither groundwater nor people's health would be endangered.
He said if the applicants are unable to do this, and if they still want to landfill coal ash, they would have to go through a landfill permitting process with the DEP's solid waste office. A permit for such a landfill would include requirements for liners and other safeguards, Horrell said.

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