PennFuture Files to Overturn Stormwater Permit at Eagle Rock; DEP Violated Law by Granting Permit as Company Continues to Pollute

Jan 21, 2005, 00:00 ET from PennFuture

    HARRISBURG, Pa., Jan. 21 /PRNewswire/ -- Citizens for Pennsylvania's
 Future (PennFuture) today announced that it has filed an appeal before the
 Pennsylvania Environmental Hearing Board against the Department of
 Environmental Protection (DEP), claiming DEP had violated the law in granting
 an NPDES (National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System) permit to Eagle
 Rock Resort Company, allowing the company to expand its development in Luzerne
 and Schuylkill Counties.  PennFuture is appealing the December 17, 2004
 decision by DEP granting the resort a stormwater discharge permit for the
 expansion despite clear evidence that the company continues to fail to control
 erosion and sediment pollution in the existing resort.
     "DEP has failed to meet its obligation to protect the waters of the
 Commonwealth," said Matthew Royer, PennFuture's staff attorney, who is
 handling the case.  "Pennsylvania law requires that any company applying for a
 new permit must demonstrate that it is in compliance with all existing DEP
 permits, regulations and orders before it is given a new permit.  Eagle Rock,
 however, has continuously failed to adequately control erosion and
 sedimentation.  DEP should not be rewarding a company with permission to
 expand without first making that company correct its existing environmental
     In its appeal, PennFuture also claims that DEP was wrong to grant the new
 permit for construction on a large section of land when the company only
 provided stormwater control plans for a smaller, first section.  The failure
 to require the company to submit plans for future phases of the development as
 part of its permit application means that interested members of the public
 will not have notice of plans and an opportunity to comment, undermining the
 public's right to participate in governmental decisions and citizens' right to
 due process.
     "We urge DEP to recognize their errors and rescind this permit," continued
 Royer.  "Environmental permit decisions must be based on the law and all
 available evidence.  This permit fails on both accounts."
     PennFuture is a statewide public interest membership organization that
 advances policies to protect and improve the state's environment and economy.
 PennFuture's activities include litigating cases before regulatory bodies and
 in local, state and federal courts, advocating and advancing legislative
 action on a state and federal level, public education and assisting citizens
 in public advocacy.  PennFuture's offices are located in Harrisburg,
 Philadelphia and Pittsburgh.
     A copy of the PennFuture appeal is available online at

SOURCE PennFuture