The final hearing was held in New York City yesterday after previous hearings were held in Binghamton, Sullivan County and Dansville, Livingston County.
In all, 590 people testified at the hearings, with an additional 669 written submissions.
“The turnout of 6,000 people at the hearings demonstrates how strongly New Yorkers feel about this important issue,” DEC Commissioner Joe Martens said in a statement. “Nearly 600 individuals took the time to voice their opinions, which ranged from urging an outright ban to urging drilling to occur now.”
Martens’ statement comes a day after the DEC announced it would be extending its public comment period on the proposals by one month. The comment period closes Jan. 11.
So far, close to 10,000 total comments have been submitted, according to a DEC spokeswoman.
“I appreciate the public’s unprecedented attendance and attention to this issue,” he said. “The comments made at the hearings will be seriously considered as we move forward with developing the final rules and conditions. In addition, all comments will be responded to in responsive summaries included in the final documents.”