Avon, N.Y.—Property owners with gas wells on their land and the Town of Avon itself are among those affected by the shutdown of 16 gas wells.
Lenape Resources of Alexander, Genesee County took action this week, following passage of a moratorium against gas exploration and storage.
“We had taken quite a bit of time to make sure we had a document in place, a local law that would not have a negative impact on their wells or their operations in Avon,” said Town Supervisor David LeFeber.
Lenape President John Holko sees it differently. He said he met with the town in recent months and tried to explain the problems associated with enacting a moratorium of this kind.
“We’ve been operating in Avon for 20 years…now the town comes in and writes a moratorium to stop my business,” said Holko.
The law prohibits “Natural Gas and Petroleum Exploration and Extraction Activities, Underground Storage of Natural Gas and Petroleum Extraction, Exploration and Production Wastes.”
Royalty payments to homeowners with wells on their land will stop and the town’s use of Lenape’s natural gas well end, according to the company’s president and the town supervisor. Avon had been using Lenape natural gas to heat two of its buildings.
“What I’m trying to do is figure out exactly how this affects me,” said Holko.
He denied shutting down wells as a way of pressuring the town to lift its ban.
LeFeber said it is possible town leaders will reconsider the moratorium at its next board meeting, scheduled for Thursday night.