Gas companies, DEC demand county’s soil, water oversight

NORWICH – The director of Chenango County Soil and Water Conservation staked out a claim with members of the Finance Committee to maintain his budget and keep funding for his staff next year.

“I have a very small staff and I lose a lot of sleep because I’m worried about keeping them,” said the department’s director, Lance Lockwood. County departments have just begun the process of budgeting for next year.

Local taxpayers support the Conservation department’s budget in total, which is $148,690 this year. Lockwood projected a zero increase in expenses. He said his department had been working diligently to bring every farm up to speed with water quality-based mandates and estimated it would take another year to do so.

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