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Champion extends extraction moratorium

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WEST CARTHAGE — Following a public hearing at which no one spoke, the town of Champion board extended the moratorium on natural gas or petroleum extraction for 180 days.

The issue was first presented at the April 2 meeting, and an initial 180-day moratorium was enacted at the May meeting to give the town board and Planning Board time to study the issues and develop regulations if deemed necessary.

Town Council members initially expressed concerns about the effect on the environment and property value of hydrofracking activities. During the spring meeting, Councilman Bruce R. Ferguson said that regulating the activity would be in line with the town’s comprehensive plan in regard to land-use control.

Planning Board Chairman Peter J. LaBarge said members hope to have land-use regulations devised by the time the extension is up.

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