Because of confusion over the purpose of the sign-in sheet used at an Informal Conference regarding a quarry permit for North Mountain Shale that took place on April 14, the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection is continuing the conference on Thursday May 6. The continued meeting will take place at 6 p.m. at the Comfort Inn located at 1872 Edwin Miller Boulevard in Martinsburg, which is just off Exit 16E of I-81.
At the April 14 meeting, the facilitator concluded the meeting, but was made aware that at least one individual was not given the opportunity to speak.
“On the sign-in sheet, there was a column in which the person signing in was to indicate that “Yes” he or she did wish to speak, or “No” he or she did not. Several people did not mark anything in that column, so it was presumed that they did not wish to make a comment at the meeting,” said Kathy Cosco, Communications Director for the WVDEP.
Because of the confusion, Cabinet Secretary Randy Huffman declared that the meeting would be continued. “We want to make sure that those who wanted to speak, but who did not get the opportunity to do so, have the ability to have their comments entered into the record for this permit application,” Huffman said.
Those who signed the sheet without marking anything in the comment column were sent letters specifically inviting them to the May 6 continuation of the conference.
Because the meeting is a continuation of the previous meeting, those who wish to speak will have three minutes to enter their comments into the public record, which is the same amount of time given to those who spoke on April 14.
The public comment period is still open and written comments will continue to be accepted until the close of the meeting on May 6.