Open Letter from Lancaster Against Pipelines to Congressman Joe Pitts

Pitts’ Advisor – Tom Tillet – was not happy with Tim Spiese’s letter to the editor today! 

Tillet publicly released emails between Lancaster Against Pipelines members & Joe Pitts’ office – attempting to prove that we are trying to “cast Pitts in the worst light possible.”

He sent these emails to members of Lancaster Against Pipelines, Lancaster Newspapers, Lancaster Farmland Trust, the County Conservancy and other notable people & groups.  Lancaster Against Pipelines responded with this message, and our record of emails between our group & Joe Pitts!


Open Letter from Lancaster Against Pipelines to Congressman Joe Pitts

In response to (Congressman Joe Pitts’ advisor) Tom Tillet’s public assertions we, the coordinators of Lancaster Against Pipelines, have released the following public statement.

We Don’t Play Politics:

Mr. Tillet, your condescending, defensive tone suggests we’re all having a great time playing politics out here on our farms and in our neighborhoods.  Let us assure you: after the past six months, political games hold even less appeal to us than trespassing survey crews. We are tired, stressed, and fighting with everything we have at our disposal to keep this unwanted harm, for corporate profit, out of our county.  Never once have we heard Congressman Pitts acknowledge the legitimacy of our concerns.

Pitts Is An Outsider – He Doesn’t Participate in the Local Process

The selected addressees of your recent email suggests you intend to play local grassroots opposition against other respected local organizations like the Lancaster County Conservancy & Lancaster Farmland Trust.  Many of us who have put our lives on hold to push back against this corporate intrusion have been working hand in hand with these local organizations to fight this threat right alongside their efforts, joining our energies, sharing ideas, frantically corresponding and coordinating our efforts on a daily basis.


We—the residents of Lanc County—are not the outsiders in this unfolding resistance to Williams’ intrusion into our neighborhoods. Make no mistake about it: on this issue, Mr Tillett, you and Mr. Pitts are the real outsiders.  If Congressman Pitts had attended any of the local, public meetings held by Lancaster Against Pipelines, FERC, Williams, The Lancaster County Conservancy, or the Lancaster Farmland Trust, he would know that residents have been encouraged to participate in the FERC process by all groups since the pipeline was first announced.

This Pipeline is Not Like Others:

We have special concern for the size of this proposed 42” transmission line, and the fact that the gas it will carry is not available to PA residents; this is what sets it apart from all of the current pipelines in this county.

All We’ve Asked For is a Public Meeting Before the Election:

We have asked Congressman Pitts and Tom Houghton to attend numerous public meetings and events over the last six months.  Congressman Pitts has refused to participate in any of them, opting only for private meetings with a limited number of participants.

The Citizens’ Bus Tour:

While we understand that Congressman Pitts has a busy schedule, many elected officials, township supervisors, political candidates, and local groups have found time in their busy schedules to ride along on for the Citizens’ Bus Tour, or to at least come to one of the five stops.  These include Republicans & Democrats, and Congressman Pitts’ opponent, Tom Houghton. We believe that if Congressman Pitts took his constituents’ concerns more seriously, he’d work in time to attend a stop on the bus tour, along with the numerous other politicians who will attend.


Tomorrow’s bus tour is a Citizens’ event.  The tour’s slogan is “By the people, for the people,” for a reason.  Our focus will be upon the pipeline’s impact on the citizens of Lancaster County.  Not on Congressman Pitts.



Lancaster Against Pipelines

Mr. Tillet’s Email, and the email he references:


A Previous Email from Tillet to Members of Lancaster Against Pipelines:

Lancaster Against Pipelines was forced to cancel a private meeting it had worked hard to secure with Congressman Pitts, due to an injury of a primary spokesperson.  Check out Mr. Tillet’s rude response.