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Township conducts hearing for reclamation project

| Thursday, June 20, 2013, 10:14 a.m.

Representatives from Coal Loaders Inc. answered Ligonier Township residents' questions concerning a land reclamation project during a public hearing last Tuesday at the township supervisors meeting.

If approved, coal will be mined and land will be restored on a piece of private property near Tosh Road.

Dave Bridge, who lives adjacent to the property, expressed interest in learning how exactly brush from the project would be burned. Coal Loaders Inc. Engineer Mark Klonicke said the company plans to use an air curtain destructor to efficiently burn the brush, which he described as a “big fan and a big pipe” that directs air to the area being burned and burns the material faster.

Tosh Road resident Mike Droske inquired about how the project will affect his well water's quality. While Klonicke insisted it is “virtually impossible” for drainage from the mine to affect the well, he said Coal Loaders Inc. will provide a replacement supply of water of the same quality and quantity if residents' water is affected.

Droske also asked if the project will interrupt the flow of a stream on his property into a pond. Klonicke said the project will delay the flow of the stream for a day at most.

Klonicke presented a revised site map for the project during the hearing, which included decreasing the site's footprint by 2.5 acres, making the size of the site 15.1 acres.

Donald Lupyan vice president of Coal Loaders Inc. also presented information during the hearing, explaining that approximately four to five coal trucks will travel from the site Monday through Saturday between 6 a.m. and 4 p.m. if the project is approved. Klonicke insisted the trucks will not impact township streets, as one resident asked if the company's trucks would be able to pass other vehicles on narrow sections of Tosh Road.

If approved, this will be the sixth reclamation contract Coal Loaders Inc. has made with Ligonier Township.

“We've had a very good relationship with the township,” Lupyan said. “We've had very little negative publicity.”

Lupyan estimates the project will take approximately one year to complete.

The supervisors will put the project on July's meeting agenda for resolution.

Also approved during the meeting was a rewording of the Supervisors Money Purchase Pension Plan, in an effort to correct inconsistencies in executing the plan. The amended plan explains pension money is paid for all hours worked. Eligible participants include any employee who receives pay for employment at any time during the plan year.

Nicole Chynoweth is a reporter for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-850-2862 or