Comments on Eagle Rock

 

Comments on Application for Major Modification to NPDES Permit No. PAG-2005403032 for Laurel Valley Subdivision of Eagle Rock Resort, Eagle Rock Resort Co., Black Creek and Hazle Townships, Luzerne County, and East Union and North Union Townships, Schuylkill County

July 30, 2004

Kate Crowley
Water Management Program Manager
DEP Northeast Regional Office
2 Public Square
Wilkes-Barre, PA 18711-0790

Re: Application for Major Modification to NPDES Permit No. PAG-2005403032 for Laurel Valley Subdivision of Eagle Rock Resort, Eagle Rock Resort Co., Black Creek and Hazle Townships, Luzerne County, and East Union and North Union Townships, Schuylkill County.

Dear Ms. Crowley:

    Citizens for Pennsylvania s Future ("PennFuture") is a statewide environmental nonprofit organization dedicated to creating a just future where the environment, communities and the economy thrive. PennFuture hereby submits for your consideration these comments concerning the proposed Laurel Valley Subdivision and possible future development of an additional 815 acres adjacent to the existing Eagle Rock Resort in Black Creek and Hazle Townships, Luzerne County, and East Union and North Union Townships, Schuylkill Counties .

     Specifically, these comments address the Notice of Intent ("NOI") submitted by Eagle Rock Resort Company ("ERRC") for a major modification of its NPDES Stormwater Permit (General Permit No. PAG-2005403032) for discharges of stormwater associated with construction activities for the proposed development. The major modification application proposes to add 815 acres to the existing PAG-2005403032 and to perform construction activities on 241 of those acres which would be subdivided into 502 building lots. This 502-lot subdivision, referred to as the "Laurel Valley Subdivision," is Phase 1 of ERRC s plans for developing the 815 acres site. Phases 2-5 are listed a "possible" in the permit application, but no plans or details with respect to future phases are provided. The NOI indicates that construction-related and post-construction stormwater will be discharged into the receiving waters of Tomhicken Creek, Sugarloaf Creek, Stony Creek and Black Creek. The nearest public water supply intake is the Humboldt Reservoir, which provides approximately 20% of the City of Hazelton s water supply. This public water supply reservoir is within the Stony Creek drainage, and would receive stormwater runoff from approximately 60-70 acres of the 815 parcel for which ERRC seeks NPDES permit coverage.

     PennFuture has reviewed the NPDES application and relevant public files, and raises the following concerns and comments for your consideration.

  1. The existence of uncorrected, ongoing environmental violations precludes the issuance of a major modification of NPDES General Permit No. PAG-2005403032.

    a. ERRC has an extensive history of noncompliance, and a multitude of uncorrected, ongoing violations are causing pollution to waters of the Commonwealth.

    As DEP is well aware, ERRC has an extensive and troubling compliance history involving numerous environmental violations. Erosion and sedimentation control violations resulted in the issuance of a Compliance Order dated November 17, 2003. As recently as July 8, 2004, an inspection by the Schuylkill County Conservation District revealed numerous violations, including a failure on the part of ERRC to fully comply with the November 17, 2003 Compliance Order.[1]

    On November 6, 2003, a joint inspection of the Eagle Rock Resort was conducted by DEP, Schuylkill County Conservation District and Luzerne County Conservation District. At that time, ERRC s NPDES Permit for Disch
Reboot state efforts, restore the Chesapeake Bay
In the wake of the Flint crisis, all eyes are...

Coming soon: Weigh in on your municipality’s MS4 permit
Since PennFuture and the PA Department of Environmental...

Dela-where was PennFuture?
Q: What spans 5 states, provides drinking water...

Wildlife in Hot Water: Central PA Edition
This is the second in a multi-part series localizing...