MONTVILLE, NJ - The Montville Township Board of Education passed a resolution supporting the Montville Township Committee’s opposition against the Pilgrim Pipeline, proposed to traverse New Jersey, including Montville Township.
“I want to thank our wonderful Board of Ed for passing the resolution against Pilgrim Pipeline last week,” stated Towaco parent Kerri Spitz, who contacted the Board of Ed and asked for the resolution. “Out of the 30 towns that this pipeline would travel through, our Board of Ed is only the third to pass such a resolution. Every step our town takes against the pipeline will help us in our fight to end this threat to our children's safety, our environment, and our property values.”
The resolution states:
RESOLVED, that upon recommendation of the Superintendent, the Montville Township Board of Education supports the efforts of Montville Township in their opposition against the Pilgrim Pipeline.
“The Board of Education is always pleased to support the efforts of those individuals and organizations who care about the safety and well-being of our students and residents,” stated Board of Education President Dr. Karen Cortellino.
The Pilgrim Pipeline is a dual pipeline, proposed by Pilgrim Pipeline Holdings LLC. This means it would carry crude oil in one direction and then refined products in the opposite direction, according to Ken Dolsky, of Already Devalued and Devastated Homeowners of Parsippany, a homeowners’ organization originally formed to oppose JCP&L’s electrical towers.
“This oil is explosive, and toxic,” said Dolsky. “Pipelines leak, causing contamination of drinking water, risks to the health and welfare of residents, and this pipeline is a risk to property values across the state.
“It’s all risk to the residents of New Jersey, especially the people whose homes are near the proposed pipeline, without any benefit. Our oil comes in on barges, but this would be on pipelines that would create risk that’s never been there before.”
The resolution passed by the Montville BOE represents the third to make such a statement; the Town of Chatham and Chatham Borough are the others, according to Spitz. The Montville Township Committee passed a resolution opposing the pipeline on September 23, 2014 (Read it HERE). Approximately 30 other towns have also passed similar resolutions, according to Dolsky. The Morris County Freeholders passed a resolution opposing the pipeline on March 25, 2015 (Read it HERE). The New Jersey State Assembly passed a similar resolution on December 18, 2014.
“Without these resolutions, we wouldn’t have formal opposition; it would be people writing letters and ‘marching in the street,’” stated Dolsky, “The resolutions give the situation visibility. A lot of people still don’t know about the threat of this pipeline or that it’s planned.”
The Coalition to Stop Pilgrim Pipeline was formed by the Sierra Club and about 40 other organizations that oppose the proposed pipeline, according to Dolsky.
The plan to build the pipeline were effectively stalled late in February when PSE&G told Pilgrim it will not allow access to its right-of-way, according to an email from PSE&G spokeswoman Karen Johnson reported on NJ.com. (Read more about the stall HERE)
An informational meeting about the pipeline will be held on May 21 at the Senior House on Main Road/Route 202 at 7:30 p.m. Dolsky will be speaking to residents of Montville and other towns on the dangers of the pipeline.
Read more about the Coalition to Stop Pilgrim Pipeline HERE.