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Saturday, November 27, 2021

Md. Air National Guard Extends Public Comment Period

Potter County Today

November 26th, 2021

(UPDATE: A Maryland Air National Guard representative responded to the Potter County Commissioners this week. She informed the board that the ANG has agreed to extend the public comment period on its environmental assessment to Dec. 31. ANG has not committed to attending a local public forum.)

Potter County Commissioners Nancy Grupp, Barry Hayman and Paul Heimel have invited representatives from the Maryland Air National Guard to attend a public forum to share details of the unit’s planned low-level military aircraft training flights over a wide swath of northcentral Pennsylvania and answer questions. The request is in response to input the commissioners have received from organizations and citizens who are concerned about the impact of the plan on tourism, the environment and the local way of life. Maryland ANG seeks authorization from the U.S. Defense Department to train A-10 “Warthog” pilots for up to 170 days a year, no longer than four hours per day, in low air space (100 feet from the ground and up) across most of Potter and Cameron counties, as well as smaller sections of McKean, Tioga, Clinton and Elk counties (see map below).

A public input period is now open on the Maryland ANG environmental assessment, which determined that the flights pose “no significant impact” on local citizens or the environment. A copy of the study is available at public libraries in Coudersport and Galeton; online at https://www.175wg.ang.af.mil/Duke-MOA-Low, (click on Duke MOA Low icon) or by contacting Kristi Kucharek, National Guard Bureau, 3501 Fetchet Avenue, Joint Base Andrews MD 20762-5157. Her email address is NGB.A4.A4A.NEPA.COMMENTS.Org@us.af.mil.

Military aircraft have trained in the region for many years, but at a higher altitude. Pa. Dept. of Conservation and Natural Resources, which manages state forests and parks, has been studying the potential impacts for more than a year. DCNR Secretary Cindy Adams Dunn said the flights could “drastically change the character of this region,” with the sound negatively affecting tourism, wildlife and outdoor recreation. DCNR has called on the Maryland ANG to maintain its current flight protocols and operations, or to consider alternative locations. The agency is also calling for an environmental impact study to be conducted, rather than the less detailed “environmental assessment” that was recently released for public comment.

32 comments:

USA USA USA. Are you sure PoCo? said...

Wow. PoCo honors our military. Thank you for your service.
But…..no. YOU CAN’T PRACTICE HERE AND DESTROY ….??? Exactly what will they destroy?
Get real, we “may disturb the wildlife?” But guns don’t “disturb the wildlife”? ATVs don’t “disturb the wildlife”? ATVs also destroy the earth. Let’s all sign petitions to ban them. They have no real use?
Anyone who knows anything about these particular planes, the A-10, knows their worth to our military. They have saved countless troops on the ground in their Close Air Support (CAS) role. These particular planes worth is almost incalculable. The military brass has tried to retire these birds to modernize with the new F-35, but were met with the outcry of those soldiers on the ground who have been saved and the pilots who have saved them by neutralizing the enemy with their exceptional skills. They all tell how valuable CAS is on the battlefield.
Flying is what is known as a diminishable skill. To the PoCo natives who only understand basic toiling in a job, If a pilot does not fly, their flying skills diminish. Low level flying is a spatial test of their skill set as well as keeping their basic flying skills honed. By not practicing regularly, their skills will diminish rapidly, possibly endangering the pilots lives and those on the ground who they are pledged to save. Thus the Navy and Marine pilots who have to have a certain amount of “launches and recoveries” on an aircraft carrier each year. The Air Force and National Guard pilots have to have X hours of practice of low level flying to keep up their unimaginable skills. Trust me, the Sounds of these planes will soon be like living next to train tracks, eventually the noise becomes part of your life.
So PoCo officials and others. More lives will be saved by you EDUCATING and encouraging your citizens to get vaxxed rather than worrying about asking our military not to disturb and harm the local fauna by flying overhead!
Yes, I have lived on and have also visited US military installations nationwide and heard planes 24/7 for many years. Curious question….If plane noise is that detrimental? Why do we still have BIRDSTRIKES at airports? (Think Miracle on the Hudson) and why do they install DEER PROOF fences alongside many rural airports? Wouldn’t all of those animals be irreparably harmed long ago or vacated the premises?
Sorry for any grammar or spelling errors, I’m not a copy editor for the PoCo Leader.

Anonymous said...

There’s plenty of ocean to fly over. Lot softer landing too.

Anonymous said...



Rural areas are supposed to be away from noise pollution. Please comment against the low flying planes. Let the Maryland Guard fly over Maryland.

Anonymous said...

Well said @2:47!!!! 👏👏👏👏

Anonymous said...

i have mixed feelings on this. YES valuable training but why not use designated military ranges for training? Also i have seen first hand results of miltary aircraft crash sites contaminating the aquifer. Theres no avoiding it if a mishap takes place. Also the jettison of fuel, so i say stick to military ranges out west. No thanks

Anonymous said...

Thank you 2:47 Refreshing to know there is intelligence in potter county after all Well said ❗️

Anonymous said...

Freedom Delivered at 3900 rounds per minute! Warthog go brrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrttttttt! As a former USAF Officer, pilots must train and maintain proficiency which can only be accomplished through flight hours performing the maneuvers they use in combat. The Duke MOA has been here for decades along with a low level route across potter county. Ask any Veteran who has served in combat about the superior performance of the A-10 in close air support and they will overwhelmingly give praise to the pilots who are there to protect them!

Michael Pepper, Director
Potter County Veterans Affairs

Anonymous said...



Re: 2:47

Must be from Maryland....

Anonymous said...

They can fly over my place anytime they want to. God Bless America

Anonymous said...

Freedom? That’s ironic, considering that we just got out of the longest running war in US history, and yet the Pentagon budget is $8 TRILLION dollars for the next ten years. It’s almost like this illusion of “freedom” directly benefits the bank accounts of the military industrial complex.

Anonymous said...

I wish they would train tanks with live ammo. Make me feel safe.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Pepper, thank you for your service.
@ 2:47 - I would tell you to your face where you can stick those jabs. I am so sick of people judging those who chose to not be jabbed. This stuff is still in clinical trials, so when you've had this stuff in your system for a couple years, I will give you the chance to convince me that it's a good thing.
I believe that our military is here to protect us, and we need to let them train wherever they think is best to train. If they need to be in this area to protect us from violence of illegal immigrants, you may be singing a different tune.

Anonymous said...

Aircraft will create far less disturbance than the jack***** on 4 wheelers do.

Anonymous said...

I agree let’s get rid of all these dam ATVs they do a hell of a lot more damage and they are here more that the planes

Anonymous said...

I am disappointed to say the least to see the Potter County Veterans Director taking a stand on this issue. Mike you know my husband and the hell he and all of us have been through with his PTSD. This is something that would probably destroy what comfort level we have been able to achieve for him after so many years of suffering. How can you go to bat for him on this when you are lobbying to do that to him? You and all of us are entitled to our own opinions but it is inappropriate for you as the director to be advocating for this.

Anonymous said...

Warthogs are less noisy than the very many ATVs that can drive on all of our township roads at about 2000 feet above sea level or 0 feet above ground level.

Anonymous said...

Why train over mountains and woodlands. The bigger question is , is there something we don't know about like their next Area of Operation. We all know that the A-10s have been serving in area's with High Mountains and vast deserts. Training over the ocean happens, I'm sure. But the A-10 is a Ground Attack special Purpose warplane and Tank Killer. Over Ocean training gives you airtime and not a lot more. It boils down to two sounds that of Jet Engines or the Lonely sound of TAPS. I'll take the sound of Jets any day over Taps.

Anonymous said...

I'd much rather hear the sound and the sight of the Warthog over the sight and sound of a deer bouncing off my new $60,000 vehicle!!!

David Reed said...

Keep flying! Really cool.

Anonymous said...

We must protect our precious and pristine Pa Wilds. Stop these flyovers. Thank God that logging, fracking and hunting do not disturb
the delicate balance of the Wilds ecosystem.

Anonymous said...

My husband has been through hell first in service to our country and then with the PTSD that affects our lives every day. These high aerial flyovers over the years have been devastating and to think that now they will swoop so low 170 days a year for multiple hours is unthinkable to us. I suppose some of you who want to see your air show every other day of the year will tell us to move away if we don't like it. That is the kind of 'thanks' that a lot of veterans get in this country so that won't surprise me. And the veterans affairs director who sounded off on here should focus on the veterans and their needs and not on his own opinions.

Lisa Hoffman said...

I hope the noisy tax dollar guzzlers don't drown out my Rachel Maddow show. Front row seat of Building. Back. Better!

Anonymous said...

While I don't argue the need to practice and wholeheartedly support our military, I can't help but wonder why Maryland Air National Guard doesn't practice over Maryland? There are lots of areas in that state that are completely rural. May it be because the folks in DC who have vacation homes in those rural areas don't want the noise in their back yards?

Anonymous said...

how about doing this training over the southern border

Anonymous said...

What would really be cool, would be to have the Warthog's seven nose canons
available as an accessory on ATVs and UTVs. Then the detractors would really have something to whine about.

Anonymous said...

7:12 don't forget snowmobiles going past your house at 9:30 at night.

Anonymous said...



Re: 10:50 PM "The bigger question is, is there something we don't know about like their next Area of Operation."

Yes, unfortunately, the next mission is against us. They are training in areas where they anticipate pockets of resistance against the elites and their New World Order. Don's scoff...

Anonymous said...

what's the impact on wildlife or doesn't PGC care?

Anonymous said...

Plenty of other places to do this. We are already under a dictatorship that is destroying our country, people are trying to feed families in any way they can...tourism is a big part of that and this will have a major impact on that.

Anonymous said...

The A10 is one of the least noisy aircraft out there. There is a lot that goes on in our rural area as far as ATV's, Lumbering, Hunting and more that make a lot more impact. While I do not agree getting rid of ATV's the A10 is going to be a lot LESS invasive than most things. Let them fly, they're a BEAUTIFUL bird!

Anonymous said...

IF the gov simply changed the name of the plane to "The Wind Hummer" or something other than "Warthog", most of you know - it - all's out there wouldn't give a damn if they flew over our area.

Anonymous said...

For "Gods Country" Potter County sure has some of the meanest most arrogant, stuck up, and outright dumb people Ive ever seen. The Duke LOW MOA has been a training area for years. Its terrain is GREAT for mimicking the mountains of Afghanistan, or other mountainous areas. Flying to the MOA also gives these pilots stick time and airframe experience. Without it, it would be like driving to the grocery store. Not very long, not very engaging and you arent going to gain much experience. You stand there and clutch your bibles and waive your flags.. but when it comes time to TRAIN the people that GUARANTEE the way of life you have, you say " Not here.. no way!" Im sure youre the same people who lose their marbled every time Russia flies to the ADZ. Let our men and women get their training and keep your traps shut.