PSE&G to Lease Land From East Hanover for Power Project
Open space at the former East Hanover Airport to be used for storage, but mayor still opposes Susquehanna-Roseland line.
The East Hanover Township Council has authorized the township to enter a lease agreement with PSE&G that would have the utility company pay the township $200,000 each year for two years so it can lay down equipment and store vehicles at the former East Hanover Airport site on Ridgedale Avenue, which was acquired by the municipality for open space, while construction of the utility's Susquehanna-Roseland power line project is under way.
The governing body unanimously authorized entering the agreement at a special meeting last week, but officials have not yet signed the lease, Administrator Joseph Tempesta said Monday.
The agreement could include an option for a third year.
Tempesta said PSE&G would keep supplies on the six-acre site, including poles, parts, and 10 to 20 vehicles, and usage would be similar to previous uses there.
There will be no helicopter operations out of the location, and PSE&G is not able to install fencing or plantings because Indian artificants were found at the site and there are restrictions in place set by the Department of Environmental Protection, Tempesta said.
Hours of operation would be 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday to Friday, and Saturday hours could end at 5 p.m. Officials said there is much precedent for public agencies to have open space used as construction lay down areas as long as the arrangement is temporary.
Mayor Joseph Pannullo said at the meeting the planned deal doesn't mean he is advocating for the lines.
"I'm also a realist. I fought long and hard. This is in no way endorsing the project itself," he said. "It's a means for something that's going to happen. It's going to happen anyway. Whether we rent that land or not they'll just go somewhere else to rent the land. We don't have to bless the project."