Two orientation sessions will get the Chemtura Public Advisory back in gear after a layoff going back to last fall. The meetings are set for June 8 and 15.
The sessions – the first featuring a presentation from the Ministry of the Environment and the second from Chemtura Co. – will mark the first public meetings of CPAC. Mayor Todd Cowan will chair the group following the decision of Coun. Julie-Anne Herteis to resign from committee.
Also stepping down before the first meeting was West Montrose resident Lynne Hare, who resigned Monday citing family obligations and time concerns given her new understanding of the “enormity the commitment to CPAC would involve.”
Hare is already involved in the gravel pit debate currently underway in the township.
One person who will certainly be attending is Alan Marshall, the Elmira resident recently removed from the committee.
Just as was the case when he was ejected from CPAC in 2008, Marshall plans to attend the meetings, speaking about what he sees as the most pressing issues.
It was his vocal criticism of the process and the delays in cleaning up the decades-old chemical site in Elmira that got him removed from the committee in both cases, as fellow members deemed him a disruptive influence.
For his part, Marshall said this week there’s a need for more action, not talk.
While acknowledging the pace has been fairly slow in getting CPAC up and running, Cowan said there’s been a steep learning curve since a new council was elected in the fall. Now, the first order of business will be the orientation sessions to help new CPAC members – and interested members of the public – learn some of the history, which dates back to the 1989 discovery of contaminants in the groundwater under Elmira.
“Everyone’s discovering that there’s a lot to learn.”
As CPAC meetings begin, Cowan is continuing to recruit new members. He said this week he hopes that with the situation stabilizing, some of the former members may be interested in returning to the fold.
Both next month’s meetings will get underway at 6 p.m. in council chambers at the Woolwich Township administration building on Church Street.