By Jon Dinan
NARROWSBURG, PA Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett arrived at an Upper Delaware River boat launch near Narrowsburg at 8 a.m. Thursday morning.
It was the start of a two-day kayak tour of the river to promote the state’s natural resources and highlight what a press release called a “critical waterway.”
A gun-metal-colored Ford Crown Victoria escorted the Governor’s black Chevy Tahoe to the side river access just shy of the Narrowsburg Interstate bridge.
Upon his arrival, Corbett was met by at least three dozen spectators, photographers, and protestors in boats and on shore. One large sign propped up in a canoe read: “Pay your DRBC dues or stay out,” referring to the Delaware River Basin Commission. It referred to the state’s decision to cut its contribution to the multistate agency which has regulatory powers over the river and its watershed.
Most other signs related to natural gas drilling, and stated messages both for and against fracking in the Delaware Watershed. One group chanted “Don’t drill the Delaware,” while another repeated “Drill the Delaware” in between the shouts of the opposing side.
Corbett entered the water in a red single-person kayak roughly ten minutes after his appearance on the scene, and despite the fact that he was accompanied by several colleagues and park rangers in boats of their own, he was immediately joined by a fleet of floating protestors who proceeded to follow him downriver and out of sight. Reportedly, some protestors were planning to use bullhorns to get their messages across, but were dissuaded by a law prohibiting sound amplification devices on the river.
The governor reached the landing at Lackawaxen, PA, at about 11:45 a.m. and held a brief press conference before being driven to Promised Land State Park in Pike County for lunch.