Delhi fracking protest makes big news

The county board of supervisors may not have shown up, but there were plenty of reporters and video cameras at Wednesday's protest of gas drilling in Delhi, in Delaware County. (Read our coverage of the rally here.)

One of the attendees behind a lens was videographer Jessica Vecchione, one of the sponsors of the event. She put together this video documenting the protest:

Delaware County Anti Gas Drilling March & Rally 09/08/10 from VeccVideography on Vimeo.


Alas for the Walton Reporter (which doesn't have a website), the newspaper publishes on Wednesday, too early in the week to report on the monthly county board meeting. The paper did note that the board meeting's cancellation was a first for the county:


In what appears to be an unprecedented event, Delaware County Board of Supervisors Chairman James Eisel has cancelled a scheduled meeting of the board because of lack of business.

A news release, faxed to The Walton Reporter on Tuesday afternoon, said, "The chairman of the board of supervisors has cancelled the Wednesday, September 8th board meeting as there are only four resolutions, no presentations or executive session scheduled. Delaware County is large in size and to have supervisors and the public travel such a distance is an inefficient use of their time."

The front page of today's Delaware County Times (also print-only) is dominated by the gas protest. Reporter K.O. Wilson has fighting words for the board:

In many ways the protest mirrored resistance shown over water quality issues of the early 1990s. This time, it wasn't New York City ignoring the Delaware County Board of Supervisors. It was the Board of Supervisors ignoring its constituency.

Yeeouch. We're guessing Jim Eisel isn't going to be too happy about that.

Speaking of Harpersfield's ever-quotable supervisor, Eisel did have a few words on the drilling protest for the Daily Star, if not for the assembled protesters:

When asked about inviting protesters to a meeting to present their side, he said, "the board has spoken," unless supervisors tell him that they want to reopen the issue.

The Delaware County board has voted several times in the last few years to pass resolutions in support of gas drilling.

Channel 12 WBNG was there, but didn't get any supervisors to comment on camera. (To their credit, Delhi supervisor Pete Bracci, Walton's Bruce Dolph, and Meredith's Keitha Capouya showed up.)

Delaware isn't the only county in the area whose board doesn't want to hear from its rabble-rousing citizens. Recently, the Schoharie County Board of Supervisors refused to let a representative from a Cobleskill anti-racist group speak at its monthly meeting, deeming her concerns "not a county issue."

(In case you missed this one: Cobleskill supervisor Tom Murray, who by now is surely as worthy of the adjective "embattled" as any Albany legislator, was caught on tape referring to Martin Luther King Day as "[N-word] Day.")