Letter from Mayor Wendell M. Butler, Jr. to Rev. Dr. Horace W. Strand, Chester Environmental Partnership

Feb 4th, 2008

Dear Dr. Strand,

As you know, I was unable to attend the Chester Environmental Partnership Meeting on December 12th, 2007, due to a scheduling conflict. However, I recently received a copy of your meeting minutes. As I reviewed the minutes, I became deeply concerned about the discussion held in regards to the Koach Energy Project and its interest in building of a plant in Chester. Based on the minutes, it is clear to me that Koach Energy is not the type of business that is consistent with the city’s current or future development efforts. They very well may be an attractive addition to some other municipality’s business base, but the City of Chester and my administration have fought for far too long in our efforts to transform our local economic base away from this type of industry.

As evidenced by our focus on converting environmentally contaminated brownfields into such dynamic projects such as the wharf at Rivertown and Harrah’s, we are not interested and would not support bringing in businesses that would further feed into the perception that potentially polluting industries are welcome in the City of Chester. In the past, that may have been acceptable to some but my interest is in the future and my focus will continue to be centered on how we move this city forward with new and exciting developments that build upon the momentum we have generated. Now is not the time to take a step backwards and focus on drawing in industries that interestingly always seem to think the City of Chester needs them more than they need us.

As Mayor, I feel it is my duty to clearly state that Koach Energy, regardless of their job creation claims and their alleged charitable benefits, is not aligned with the future direction of the City of Chester. I will not support businesses that will directly harm the city’s current positive economic trend which further reinforces the perceptions that some apparently have had that Chester should be the home for potentially polluting industries. I hope you will join me in this effort as I am sure we share a vision for the future of Chester that does not include these types of businesses.


Wendell M. Butler, Jr.