Constitution Pipeline: Public Weighs In

By Erika Mahoney

September 24, 2012 Updated Sep 24, 2012 at 11:50 PM EDT

Village of Afton, NY (WBNG Binghamton) As project details continue to develop for the proposed Constitution Pipeline, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission is beginning its public hearings on the pipeline.

On Monday night, the Afton High School auditorium was packed with people who had a lot of opinions and a lot of questions.

According to Williams Energy Corporate Communication Specialist Chris Staffel, the proposed 121 mile long pipeline is designed to start in Susquehanna County, go into Broome, through Chenango and Delaware counties, and end in Schoharie County.

If approved, it will serve 3 million homes everyday.

Right now the pipeline is in "pre-filing" review with FERC and actually, the route isn't quite set.

Staffel said there is a 600 foot corridor for "room to move" to figure out where the best place for the pipeline is.

She said the company has just finished distributing surveys to the approximately 1,400 families that live along the proposed pipeline route.

Staffel said reactions to the pipeline are mixed, much like the reaction at Monday's public meeting.

"I have experienced pipeline installation in Pennsylvania," said Craig Stevens. "My property was negatively affected and my house was negatively affected as well. I have one acre, and they blew the creek out, eight times in my backyard over two and a half months.'

"I do believe that natural gas is the way of the future, so I do support it," said Town of Windsor Supervisor Randy Williams. "I do believe we do need some precautions, and that's why I came here tonight."

According to Staffel, the goal is to submit an application to FERC by February 2013.

Williams has 75 percent of the pipeline and Cabot Oil and Gas has 25 percent.

There is another public meeting scheduled for Tuesday night at Schoharie High School beginning at 7 p.m.