Many of you will remember when the water treatment facility was originally proposed last year. The plan to destroy this beautiful, tranquil parkland in order to build a 28 ft. high (2-1/2 story) 37 X 42 ft industrial building complete with 24/7 noise and air pollution was met with outrage by the local community, as well as residents from other parts of Montclair.
Despite short and inadequate notice, more than 80 people showed up for the meetings. Over 300 letters of concern and an online petition were sent to the Town Council and the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP)/Green Acres that must approve the plan. The town is required by the DEP/green acres to address these letters and to answer the questions and concerns contained in them.
Now, fifteen months later the water department seems ready to do that. They have quietly put the Nishuane Well presentation on the April 29 town council agenda. Once again, there has been virtually no public announcement. Questions have been asked, but not answered about what to expect at the meeting:
Just a few of the questions raised:
- Why is the township pushing forward a plan that robs Montclair of valuable pristine parkland?
- What will the well eventually cost residents? The town must borrow $3 million for construction–but this is not a gift. Once built, the facility must be maintained with taxpayer money.
- Where is a detailed analysis of Montclair’s current water needs and a prospectus for future needs?
- How much water is currently being pumped per year (we know that at least two township wells are “off-line” for months at a time) and why does a town that has enough water to sell to neighboring towns need more water if this will threaten green space?
All residents who care about hearing the answers to the questions raised are strongly urged to attend and make their voices heard. If you’re worried about over-development and rising costs in Montclair and concerned about keeping township leaders and planners accountable for their actions, please come and fight for our much-loved green space!
The only way to get the Council’s attention is with a strong citizen presence!