Northwestern Press

Saturday, December 15, 2018

Albany creates EAC

Wednesday, December 5, 2018 by Debra Palmieri dpalmieri@tnonline.com in Local News

Albany Township supervisors, in a 3-0 vote, have established an Environmental Advisory Council.

The Pennsylvania Municipalities Planning Code provides for creation of these advisory bodies in commonwealth municipalities.

According to information provided by Brooks Mountcastle of the Appalachian Trail Conservancy, volunteer members of the EAC will advise township officials about environmental concerns, and planning and zoning issues.

Mountcastle also noted in the email to The Press, the Appalachian Trail Conservancy assisted with the formation of the Albany Township EAC.

Supervisors’ Chairman Josh Rabert commented on the new endeavor.

“The Albany Township Board of Supervisors’ creation of an EAC in the township is a great way to create additional community involvement within local government,” Rabert said. “We look forward to working with the EAC members who have decided to dedicate their valuable time to our community.”

Other supervisors are Vice Chairman Charles Volk and Chris Schucker.

A primary focus of the EAC will be the Kittatinny Ridge, a designated state and global Important Bird Area.

The ridge, on which Hawk Mountain Sanctuary is located, provides a migration route for thousands of hawks, eagles and songbirds.

Supervisors are expected to appoint seven EAC members from various backgrounds to serve on the council during their January 2019 board meeting. Todd Bauman, director of land and facilities at Hawk Mountain Sanctuary; Jeff Schucker, president of Bailey Wood Products Inc.; Tom Kerr, former president of Wildlands Conservancy and secretary of the Kempton Community Center; Dr. Laurie Goodrich, director of long-term monitoring at Hawk Mountain Sanctuary; Bracken Brown, science teacher at the Kempton New Church School; Anita Zawada, township planning commission member; and Stephanie Wessner Stoudt, who helps manage Albright’s Mill, Kempton; are expected to be on the EAC.

“We greatly appreciate the leadership the township supervisors have provided in this effort,” Kerr said. “The members of the EAC are anxious to work on conservation issues facing the township in a cooperative spirit with township officials.”

Goodrich also commented on the EAC creation.

“Albany Township is a special place for people and for wildlife, including migratory birds,” Goodrich said. “Hawk Mountain Sanctuary is eager to assist the township with this new endeavor.”