Local Matters

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February 5, 2012 - 5:55pm

What We Know so Far

As promised I have been asking questions and seeking knowledge. I don’t have all questions answered yet, but here is what I do have:

For those of you who might be out of the area and do not know I am Trustee on the Village Board. I was elected in March 2010.

I have been a case manager in the adolescent mental health system at St. Joseph’s Villa of Rochester since August 2001. I don’t diagnose or treat. I work with kids and their families to unite their teams to plan to address identified underlying needs that are believed to be the cause of the behaviors we are seeing. I am also a parent representative on the Committee of Special Education (CSE) in Le Roy.

My role here is as a leader in the community to try to help alleviate the very real fears that people have and reunite my fractured community.

Was soil from the derailment site on Gulf Road used as fill for the school? No! The DEC expert I spoke to said that given there has only ever been about one inch of soil on top of the lime rock layer at said site, there is no way that there was ever enough to harvest and use elsewhere.

Was rock from the site used? It is important to note that TCE is air soluble. This means that once rock is crushed or broken any TCE it might contain immediately evaporates into the air. We do not KNOW for certain if any rock from the derailment site was used, BUT if it was it wasn’t contaminated because the TCE would have evaporated out of it.

Is there fracking liquid leaking out of the gas well? No. These wells are too old to have any fracking liquid left in them. There were dead trees at the site before the wells were put in. There may have been some liquid from the Medina salt layer that has leaked out at some point. This is basically salt water. Salt kills grass, trees, plant life, just like when our grass is killed by the salt thrown up by the snow plows onto it. I was at the meeting yesterday at school and want to remind everyone that the school’s wells are in compliance with all codes. They are of no concern to the DEC.

What was the liquid spill at well 6? It was largely salt water with a little gypsum. It’s possible there was some iron and sulfur in the form of sulfides. Iron can stain, as you probably know, but the rest would wash away with the first good rain. Similar brines that come out of wells like these is permitted to be used on roads for de-icing and is similar to in chemistry to rock salt.

Why aren’t they burning chemicals out of the gas before using it in the school? The gas harvested here is clean. It is under the Medina salt layer, which is impermeable to liquid. There is no way chemicals have leeched into it out of the ground.

On my last post Bill Elsasser commented-The marshy end of Bunnell Park, just west of the fence line, near where the pond is located, seems like an area of interest. Who was the excavating contractor? Wasn't an excavator "buried" in the muck somewhere around here and then retrieved? Must have made the newspaper at the time. Where was the fill for that retrieval pit sourced? Is the playground and sports area of the Park a potential "common denominator"? The "natural" area, just northwest of the playground and east of Summit Street, draws the runoff from the sports fields, any need to sample soil or water here? The response I received was that the fill came from a farm near the Le Roy-Pavilion line on Summit Street. The land was poor for farming and only suitable for pasture, so there is no need to worry about fertilizers and pesticides. Track equipment gets stuck on daily basis during construction, so that specific even should not be of concern either.

Thank you for taking the time to read this. Please feel free to email me at [email protected]. Thank you very much to everyone who responded last time both here and through email. Thank you, Howard Owens, for the fine work you have been doing here and providing us this forum.

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