Public Outcry at Outdoor Wood Boiler Hearing Puts Pressure on DEC; Hawley Reminds Residents To Continue Grassroots Effort

Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,I,C-Batavia) is reminding residents to continue to attend hearings hosted by the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) regarding outdoor wood boilers. Additionally, the assemblyman is reminding residents that they have until July 2 to submit written comments to the DEC.

“On Monday, more than a hundred people attended the public hearing held in Batavia,” said Hawley, whose Chief of Staff attended the hearing. “With the statewide number of households with wood boiler heaters around 14,000, the excellent turnout from our community alone showed how important it is that these regulations not be enacted.”

The DEC is conducting public hearings across the state, giving information sessions on the newly proposed regulations while allowing the public to express their concerns. The Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) proposal looks to place new regulations on operating requirements for both new and existing outdoor wood boilers. Under the new restrictions, outdoor wood boilers would have to be at least 100 feet from neighboring properties and would have to be at least 18 feet in height. New York is the only state considering the new regulations on existing wood boilers.

“Purchasing and installing new wood boilers can cost anywhere from $10,000 to $25,000. At that price, these new restrictions are simply unaffordable for many people whose boilers already meet the current DEC regulations. With only about a hundred complaints over the last four years leading to these proposed regulations, clearly this is just another example of a downstate controlled government agency circumventing the legislature to enforce a mandate. I encourage Upstate and Western New York residents who own outdoor wood boilers to continue their grassroots effort and submit their written concerns to the DEC before the July 2 deadline,” Hawley concluded.