My stance on the Allegheny Land Trust project

On Sept. 8, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette printed an article about the Churchill Valley Country Club in which I was incorrectly quoted.

The newspaper has since retracted those comments attributed to me but I want to make sure my constituents know the newspaper reporter erred.

The article is about the Allegheny Land Trust’s (ALT) effort to convert the former country club site into a nature preserve/walking trail.

The PG reporter said I was in favor of using that parcel for gas wells and fracking.  Nothing could be further from the truth.

The ALT project has received mixed reviews.  After personally meeting last spring with ALT representatives, I told them I respect their efforts, but I do not believe green space is the best use for the site.  The Penn Hills Mayor and Council had to raise taxes this year as did the School Board.  The Penn Hills School District is in serious financial debt and state financial recovery.  I cannot in good conscience endorse a proposal for a nearly 150-acre parcel (1/3 of which is in Penn Hills)  of prime developable land that will take it from the tax rolls when that income is so desperately needed in Penn Hills.  I believe the site is ideal for a variety of development including upscale residential housing.  I never said it should be used for fracking as I know that is not even permissible by local codes, nor do I believe that is an acceptable use.