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ConEd2.4SMALLERFebruary 4, 2019 – After Con Edison recently announced a move to abruptly and quickly halt new gas-line hook ups in Westchester County – a move that will severely impact any proposed construction projects - County Executive George Latimer announced a multi-step approach to deal with this moratorium county-wide.

Latimer said: “This moratorium is a serious move that will impact development in Westchester County - particularly in our major cities where development has been very much part of their economic revival efforts. Our goal in County government is to bring together all local governments and plan – together – how we must respond to this.”

This approach includes:

  • Facilitating next steps with municipalities and Con Edison;           

    • Including a full list of projects and their timetables for construction to get a big picture of where we as a County are with demand; 

  • Enlisting the help of energy consultants who can guide us through the regulatory process;

  • Tasking Director of Energy & Sustainability Pete McCartt with performing a survey to explore how the County can reduce gas usage at our facilities;

  • Tasking Director of Operations Joan McDonald with working with New York State Public Service Commission (PSC) Chairman & CEO John Rhodes from to encourage Con Edison to delay the moratorium so we as a County can develop and action plan;

    • Additionally, County Executive Latimer will be testifying at the next PSC hearing;

  • Working with the business community, and other entities, to help them navigate this moratorium and how it relates to development.

New York State Assemblyman David Buchwald said: “There is no doubt in my mind that the Con Edison natural gas moratorium poses a serious challenge to the Westchester economy. It is now our task as representatives of the people and businesses of Westchester to help provide as clear a path forward as possible.”

New York State Assemblywoman Amy Paulin said: “The proposed gas moratorium by Con Edison is an all-hands-on-deck moment for our county, and I am thankful for County Executive Latimer’s leadership. We need to come together to figure out how best to preserve the development projects that drive so much of our economy, and special circumstances like school construction. I am hopeful that this will both lead to a broader awareness of renewable energy options, and better communication between the state, Con Edison, and our local communities around creative solutions to head off a crisis.”

Board of Legislators Chairman Ben Boykin said:  “This will affect everyone in Westchester County -- developers, homeowners, school districts, municipalities and others. The Board will be speaking with Con Edison and working with the County Executive and municipal governments to make sure a plan is in place which allows a way forward for developers and homeowners, and which addresses concerns about the adequacy of the natural gas supply, while continuing our push toward renewables.” 

 

New Rochelle Mayor Noam Bramson said: “We are very fortunate to benefit from the County Executive’s leadership on this issue and his instantly recognizing this is a regional challenge and we must coordinate our efforts. The cities of Westchester County are going through historic renewal and it is years of painstaking efforts that put us in this position. To receive this sudden news from Con Edison is potentially very problematic – but I am confident that all of us working together can achieve a solution.”

 

White Plains Mayor Tom Roach said: “The County Executive’s leadership on this issue has been tremendous. Part of what we need to do is get all of the facts on the table for developers so we can work together to make the changes we need to make to keep our economy moving forward.”

Yonkers Mayor Mike Spano said: “There is no question a gas moratorium will greatly impact development in Yonkers and across the County. It is essential we obtain an independent verification of the severity of the problem. We need to know if there is still additional capacity that would allow the moratorium to be delayed until alternative energy sources are put in place. I look forward to working with my colleagues in government to ensure our cities’ concerns are heard and appropriately handled.