The long awaited public meeting on Elcon is being held tonight at 7 p.m. in Pennsbury High School West’s Keller Hall. After years of debate and high tensions, the Falls Township Board of Supervisors will be reviewing the toxic waste facility’s land development application.
Hundreds of residents have attended previous meetings to voice their concerns of the potential environmental impact.
“They want to put this in the middle of a highly, densely populated area, which is just ludicrous,” one resident said. “It doesn’t make sense.”
“Even though it is in Pennsylvania, it’s right on the river and so are we,” a Bordentown, NJ resident said. “Air quality and water quality don’t know borders. It’s going to affect us.”
Some members of environmental groups have called on the Board of Supervisors to pass a clean air ordinance. However, Supervisor Chairman Bob Harvie said they legally could not.
“Our attorney and his firm took a look several times at this issue and had discussions with other attorneys,” Harvie said at a meeting late last month. He cited the DEP striking down similar actions taken by Philadelphia and Allegheny Counties. “This is not a decision people are going to like to hear, but we do not have the ability to pass a clean air ordinance.”
Yet some avid environmentalists debated the point. A member of the Energy Justice Network gathered residents in the parking lot after a Board of Supervisors meeting. He told them the information was misleading.
“The logic that they’re twisting to be able to give you the misinformation you’re getting in this room ties into what Philadelphia and Allegheny County can do that other places can’t do, which is take over DEP’s job,” Mike Ewall said. “We’re not trying to do that.”
Most recently, the Falls Planning Commission rejected Elcon’s facility proposal. Though it is only an advisory board, their input could have an impact on the final decision, which could come before midnight Tuesday night.