The township told the citizens that the well was drilled and operated by the GMA, and they would have to go there to get their answers. So they went to GMA. GMA's board is comprised solely of residents of Gettysburg Borough. GMA told the citizens to go to their Supervisors because their supervisors should be attending GMA meetings.
Both municipal entities are gutless. They hide behind phrases such as:
Now they play the "Go ask your Dad"--"Go ask your Mom" game. No one will give these folks the answers they seek.
"We are not required to..." "We have no plans at this time..." "We are required only to..."
Indeed, the situation arose most likely when the Township, or some developer, asked GMA if there was sufficient water in the area to support "x" number of new homes. So, GMA goes and drills a test well that threatens the water supply of the existing residents in the area. Perhaps that is legitimate. What is not legitimate is that neither the developer [if one is involved], nor the Township, nor GMA bothered to inform the locals that they were drilling a test well in their area. Further, at every turn there were vague warnings that if pressed, the testing of the surrounding wells to see the effect the test well had on them could get expensive for the homeowners.
That is a shameful shirking of responsibility. For elected officials to take this approach when they are there to protect the citizens is reprehensible. This is not the first time, either. The same thing happened 8 or so years ago when an enormous test well was drilled and spewed tens of thousands of gallons of water out on the ground to see if there was enough to support the construction of the new prison and the new power plant out in Straban Township. The Strabaddies were surprised when a large contingent of local farmers showed up complaining about their wells running dry --and all this in the middle of a two year drought!
The buck-passing and shirking of responsibility by elected municipal officials is usually a sign they've been caught out at something. They do not like being publicly exposed when what they are about is the least bit shady. While the Strabaddies have finally learned to play by the rules, The Cumberland Clowns, and apparently the GMA Goofballs have not. Cumberland is well known for looking the other way at violations of agreements with contractors, totally ignoring green laws, and violation of their ordinances -- just so long as the money keeps rolling in...and it will as long as the developers and contractors continue to play the game. And they never tell anyone who may be affected by their decisions about how it will affect them. When asked, they hide behind "We are not required to...", and "We have no plans at this time...". You can tell they are lying because their lips are moving.
The GMA Goofballs simply take the word "Authority" far too seriously. They forget they ARE elected. The fact that no other municipalities are represented on their board when they claim "authority" over a very wide area is almost malfeasance. They should have restructured their representation to include folks from all the municipalities they operate in -- at the very least! Without that representation the board should stand up to its responsibilities and tell people the truth. And if their actions affect others negatively they need to bear the responsibility, especially financially. They SHOULD be monitoring the nearby wells for changes in recovery times, and water levels. And any developer involved should be made to pay the costs.
They are shameless in their wretched excesses.
The time for free rides for developers must come to an end. These municipalities need to become more responsive and sensitive to their constituents, even when they are not represented by some elected official. But get some guts and start charging the developers for all the tests, and do so without cutting back on what those tests are comprised of. Make sure nearby wells are also monitored.
Irresponsible government sucks. Playing dodge ball with constituent groups sucks big time.
Both municipalities owe these constituents an apology and the action steps necessary to make good what they should have done automatically in the first place.
Then they need an attitude readjustment. YOU FOLKS WORK FOR THE TAXPAYERS. AND DON'T FORGET IT. The Developers are your customers, but the taxpayers are your constituents.
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