Pipeline for KLN Snack Plant Gets Green Light, Water Authority R - WICU12 HD WSEE Erie, PA News, Sports, Weather, Events

Pipeline for KLN Snack Plant Gets Green Light, Water Authority Removed from Project

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Waterford supervisors gave KLN plant the go-ahead for a critical construction project on Monday night, throwing out the water authority's controversial vote from last week, and ending five months of conflict.

More than 100 waterford residents, cheered for the jobs that KLN plans to create, now that the company's plans for a water and sewer pipeline will allow the plant to run in full capacity, with room to grow.

"I'm really happy that it went through, the community needed it," said Dale Fortin, a concerned Waterford resident who created an online petition in support of KLN. "I don't normally get into this meeting part of it, but it's gotten to the point where I needed to get up and say something - get on Facebook, create a support group, create a petition - and there was an overwhelming response from that," he said.

The road to was not easy going, leading to Monday's tense emergency meeting.

"I was getting very nervous that we were getting so far along and nothing had been resolved," said Bruce Coffin, one of the three Waterford supervisors. "I'm disappointed that it came to this. I have a lot of respect for everybody in this community, whether it be the borough or the township," he said.

In reviewing ordinances, the supervisors found that they have jurisdiction the projects overseen by the water and sewer authority. In a two-to-one vote on Monday's meeting at Fort LeBoeuf middle school, the supervisors removed the authority from the developer's agreement, stripping away their role entirely, which discredits the authority's Thursday vote against the pipeline.

"I think the fact so many Waterford residents came out tonight speaks loudly to KLN, who has been extremely frustrated with trying to bring business to Erie County," said Kathy Dahlkemper, Erie County Executive. "We don't have this opportunity very often, so tonight was a great show of support," she said.

KLN Family Brands/ Barrel O' Fun plans to start construction on the pipeline immediately.

"Finally after this long road, we're very pleased," said Brian Garlick, general manager of the Waterford branch of KLN. "We're ready to move forward from this, start getting the plant ready, and start making chips here in Waterford very soon," he said.

The company plans to start off with kettle chips. Garlick expects the company to employ 125 people by October 1st, and up to 500 as the company expands.

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