If you have been following the information we have been sharing regarding the behavior of Supervisor Gonser, the information included in this post will come as no surprise to you. However, it has now reached the point where the citizens of Oakland Township need to express their opinions on his inappropriate, unauthorized decisions.
The most recent incident involves a decision he made on the possible use of park land. His action is consistent with his desire to control the, separately elected, Parks Commission.
After reading this, if you find his behavior unacceptable and are concerned about the impact of this pipeline on our park, we invite you to the December 9th Oakland Township Board meeting at 7 PM and let the Board know your position. It is not officially on the agenda, but some Board members may add it. If it is not placed on the agenda, you will still be able to provide your input during the ‘citizen comments’ section of the meeting.
Here is the background on this issue:
- At the November 12, 2014 Parks and Recreation Commission (PRC) meeting, Chris Hawthorne, an employee of EnSite who represents Vector Pipeline, gave a presentation describing a proposal to install a 42 inch diameter high pressure gas line (up to 1000 psi) through our Township.
- This pipeline is intended to transmit natural gas from Illinois, through Indiana and to Canada.
- 95% of the pipeline route through the state is intended to follow an existing pipeline and utilize the currently approved rights-of-way (ROW’s already going through our Township).
- Vector Pipeline wants to deviate from the existing right-of-way in one area of our Township by putting the pipeline through Draper Twin Lakes Park.
- The stated reason for the deviation was that installing the pipe through the existing right-of-way was “extremely tight”.
- They were asking permission from the Parks Commission to survey the land to determine the feasibility of routing the pipeline through the park.
- During questioning, the representative stated that all Supervisors in the affected communities had previously been contacted regarding this project.
- The Parks Commission members were not aware of any previous communication on this issue.
- When PRC chairman Zale asked if any Commission members would like to make a motion to approve the request, there was silence. As a result, the request was denied.
- The Parks Commission did not approve the request on the basis that the park land has deed restrictions that prevent the pipeline from going through it.
- A few days later, parks personnel observed individuals from EnSite USA surveying Draper Twin Lakes Park.
- Upon further investigation, Mr. Harthorne indicated that after he did not receive permission to perform the survey from the PRC, he contacted Supervisor Gonser, and Supervisor Gonser gave him permission to do the requested work.
Here is a copy of the map showing the proposed path for the pipeline through Oakland and Macomb Counties.
Click on the map to see a larger version of it.
Here is a copy of the map showing the proposed route for the pipeline through the Draper Twin Lakes park: (The yellow line is the existing pipeline and approved ROW. The red line is the proposed path through the park.)
Click on the map to see a larger version of it.
Here is a video showing the typical impact of the installation of this type of gas line:
Why is this important to the citizens of Oakland Township? Supervisor Gonser did not have the authority to authorize the surveying work. He appears to not be concerned about the impact of a gas pipeline through our Parks.
Gonser unilaterally made this decision, totally disregarding the PRC’s stance on this matter. The park land is the PRC’s responsibility, not the Supervisor’s. He did not have any public communication on this matter with other Township Board or PRC members.
His lack of knowledge regarding the impact gas lines can have in a community is exemplified by his total disregard for the location of a gas line near his home. As part of an settlement agreement in a personal protection order (PPO) request made by his neighbor against him, he agreed to move a tree that he planted on his neighbor’s property. When Gonser had a company move the tree, a gas line was ruptured. He did not utilize ‘mis-dig’ to locate the line prior to attempting to move the tree.
It appears that when Gonser wants to get something done, he does not consider the correct process to be followed, or the potential consequences of his actions.
Gonser’s personal experience with gas lines
This recent action by our Supervisor is yet another example of his arrogant, authoritarian style. Please click on the words “Supervisor Gonser” in the right portion of this webpage to scroll through and read the many previous posts regarding Supervisor Gonser’s actions.
If you find his behavior unacceptable or are concerned about he impact of the pipeline on our park land, please attend the December 9 Board meeting, and express your displeasure with his actions and decision.