RENSSELAER FALLS – A Rensselaer Falls woman is hoping her state senator will help install a natural gas line in her community.
Bonnie M. St. Denny, a 47-year resident of Rensselaer Falls, said she is tired of paying the high cost of fuel oil to heat her home, and is hoping state Sen. Patricia A. Ritchie, R-Heuvelton, will champion her cause.
It comes down to economics, Mrs. St. Denny said.
She and her husband paid close to $4,000 from November to March, an average of $1,000 per month, last year to heat her home.
We have a big home, but thats a lot, she said. Its been steadily rising at least a dollar and two dollar a gallon since 2007. That starts to add up year after year.
Other home-heating options, she said, have also become less economical.
We used to burn wood get it for about 20 for a cord now it is between $60 and $100, she said. St. Lawrence Gas, which has installed lines in nearby Heuvelton and Canton, considered installing lines about 10 years ago after the company installed lines at the Corning Incorporated, 334 County Route 16, Assistant Manager James P. Ward said.
It comes down to feasibility, Mr. Ward said. It can be difficult to justify the expense. We have to meet our rate of return by the fifth year. That can be a barrier for smaller communities that are outside our territory.
The company said that it would be willing to revisit installing lines based on public interest and accessibility.
We would be more than willing to look at it again, Mr. Ward said. We would like to grow our business as much as we can.
Installing lines could improve overall economic development in the village, Mrs. St. Denny said.
Maybe thats why we havent had a lot of businesses move into the area, she said.
Mrs. St. Denny said she would submit her letter to Mrs. Ritchie early as next week.
Sarah Compo, spokeswoman for Mrs. Ritchie, said that Mrs. Ritchie could not comment on the issue until she received the letter. James E. Reagen, community relations director for Mrs. Ritchie, said issues involving community development are the kinds of issues Senator Ritchie is concerned about.
I cant see why we dont have it, Mrs. St. Denny said. We have high speed internet but we dont have natural gas. Were not in a deep valley or on top of a mountain. We are in a pocket that it just hasnt got to yet.