On Wednesday, April 12, 2017, a public hearing was held at the Holiday Inn in Solomons. Dominion Cove Point requested the state to modify the original existing permits. The hearing was conducted by the Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE). The existing permits are associated with Dominion Cove Point’s Offsite Area A and pertain to the bridge that crosses the small stream and the wetlands.
When the project is completed, Dominion will give the approximate 100 acres to Calvert County. There has been a lot of dialogue on what the county plans to do with the site, when they receive it from Dominion, but nothing is set in stone.
Calvert Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) President Tom Hejl wanted those in attendance to know that the BOCC supports Dominion’s request to the MDE to modify the permit and leave the bridge in place. He also let it be known that the rumors about Dominion taking back the existing Cove Point Park are not true. There is always room for more recreational fields and this acreage benefits the citizens of Calvert County.
Many of the residents, who spoke at the hearing, worried that Dominion Cove Point might go back on their word and take the land back that comprises Cove Point Park now. Some thought it might mean a new expansion at the Dominion Cove Point LNG Plant. Some of the residents thought it was good that Offsite Area A was going to go the county and could mean more playing fields for the youngsters. It was noted by one speaker that Dominion Cove Point employees have been involved with local non-profits, volunteering their time and talent. Another thought a new recreational area would be good for local business.
According to MDE Nontidal Wetlands and Waterways Division Chief Amanda L. Sigillito, the public record on the permit modification request will be kept open for two weeks with a decision to be rendered in late May.
Karl Neddenien, Maryland Media/Community Relations Manager, Dominion Cove Point LNG, on the public hearing, “Dominion appreciates the opportunity to participate in this public meeting. Public comment is an important element in our regulatory filings”.
The three pictures below are of Offsite Area A and the beautiful mature trees.
Margit Miller / Calvert Beacon